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The History of VW Sand Rail Vehicles

Dune buggies and sand rails have been popular since the 1960’s when mechanics and enthusiasts realized that their light frames and motors would be great for driving on the dunes. People start tinkering with the motors and chassis to make them ideal for dealing with the harsh desert terrain. The air cooled engine of a VW Beetle was ideal for the concept of a VW sand rail, weighing in at around 200 pounds and being totally air cooled. In fact, the name dune buggy came from the VW “Bug”.


Later, designers started using other motors in their vehicles as well, finding that lightweight and air cooled engines were best. You can position these engines in the mid or rear section of the vehicles which is important to weight distribution when you are driving off road. Today, however, many vehicles use the most modern water cooled engines as technology has developed to make them even more advanced than air cooled models were.



VW dune buggies were shown off and raced for many years and they are still treasured by modern sand rail enthusiasts. VW sand rails have become a sort of classic item amongst the community and many websites are dedicated to information on the original Volkswagen designs. You can still buy all the parts you need to create VW sand rail cars.

If you are interested in owning original VW dune buggies made from Beetle frames and engines, you can find them from many dealers. To find them for sale in your area, check online forums and contact local dealers for information or where you can find VW sand rail vehicles still in good condition. Most modern sand rail cars are now very different from their Volkswagen ancestors, so it can be fun to take a ride in the vehicle that started them all, the VW sand rail.
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