To put it simply, there aren’t a lot of cars that make me smile. By looking at them, I mean. Sure, time spent behind the wheel, with the pedal down and the revs up will almost always lead to a release of endorphins, it’s difficult for a car to evoke an emotion of happiness from its presence alone.
It was just an un-assuming little squareback, sitting in California waiting for a new owner to claim it. The beige wagon wore layers of paint over body panels that had seen a rough handful of decades, but its patina was endearing in a way. Fortunately for the old aircooled, the boys at Type 2 Detectives were back in the States and on the hunt for the perfect transportation during their stay here.
Photography by Bryan Cheney
“What year is that thing?” – If you’ve ever owned a classic car, you know the question well. Chances are it’s the first thing a curious stranger will ask you when you pull up at a gas station. Older cars just seem friendly and inviting. You’ll end up deep in conversation with passers-by as they reminisce about how they had a friend or relative who once had some similar car when they were a kid.
“Californian” is as much an adjective as it is a noun – a description that embodies the essentials: palm trees, ocean waves, and sunny skies. In the details, you’ll find surf boards, vans shoes, good food, and on occasion, a classic aircooled Volkswagen Beetle. Through his 1967 bug, and with a heart to match, Dylan Rodriguez has built a car that is nothing short of quintessentially “Californian.
For those who’ve never visited Old Towne Orange, California, it’s an odd place. As someone who grew up in a quaint mid-west town, it’s familiar and comforting, but amidst the hustle and bustle of California freeways and endless expanses of asphalt and shopping centers, it feels out of place as if you’ve taken a step back in time.