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Wilhelm Karmann GmbH
Wilhelm Karmann acquired a carriageworks in Osnabruck, Germany in 1901. Karmann really wanted to build Motorwagen rather than horse-drawn carriages and had built his first body on a Dürkopp in 1902. By 1905 Karmann had a catalogue of 4 different car bodies, and by 1908 Wagenfabrik Wilhelm Karmann was building for Adler and Opel. By 1911 Karmann had patented a folding hood mechanism, and survived the First World war by building Ambulances. Car production in Germany was in the doldrums after the war and Karmann survived by building carts until 1920. As production picked up Karmann visited America and learned enough to realise that metal bodies was the future and the time was up for the fabric-covered wooden bodies. In association with Adler in the 1920s, Karmann developed many legendary cars, including the Primus and Trumpf convertibles. During the Second World War Karmann manufactured Aircraft components, but ended the war bombed out. Karmann, now with Wilhelm Karmann jr at the helm, started slowly after the war, mostly building truck bodies for the Allied Forces. However, in 1945 Karmann cut the roof off a VW Beetle and made it into a convertible. Volkswagen management initially rejected the concept, but when a prominent VW dealer ordered a 1000 VW Beetle convertibles the deal was sealed. In 1953 Karmann commissioned Luigi Segre at Ghia to design a sporting car based on the VW Beetle and then presented the concept to Volkswagen as the Karmann Ghia. Once again Wolfsburg was persuaded and Karmann's most famous product started the first of half a million to be sold. Karmann Ghias ended production in 1974, and convertible Beetles ceased production in 1980 after 332,000 had left the Karmann factory. The relationship with VW continued, with Karmann producing the Scirocco, Golf Convertible. Diversification saw Karmann undertaking the Ford Escort convertible, components for Renault convertibles, and then did work for Daimler-Benz and Chrysler.
Volkswagen Beetle Convertible
Volkswagen Karmann Ghia
Triumph TR6
Volkswagen Golf Convertible
aa_Volkswagen Beetle 1969 Convertible badge
Volkswagen Beetle Convertible by Karmann 1969 - badge on bonnet side
aa_Volkswagen Golf GTI 1987 Convertible badge
Volkswagen Golf GTI 1987 Convertible - badge on front wing denoting Karmann who built Golf convertibles
aa_Volkswagen Type 14 badge
Karmann Ghia. Volkswagen Type 14 - boot badge. Dr Karmann commissioned Ghia of Turin to design the Type 14 and Volkswagen sanctioned the building of the car at Karmann's Osnabruck works.
key text:  This is the page introducing Simons love of cars from the website  RedSimon which is a series of photo albums of Simon GP Geoghegan.
The names of Pinin, Farina, and Pininfarina are also considered
There are also notes on Pininfarina
as well as the car maker
and links tothat car maker
see also my Picasa car albums
withe even more on RedSimon
Simon is also a contributor to SuperCars.Net
And also to Wikipedia
Photos may be purchased from PhotoBox