Last updated Sep 3, 2013
I bought this Lafer -- designed by Percival (hence the nickname) Lafer and factory-built in Sao Paolo, Brazil in 1981 -- from a collector in Montgomery, Texas, near Lake Conroe north of Houston, in the spring of 2007. It wasn't in quite as good a shape as he'd indicated, but for the price I still feel it was a bargain.
Since taking delivery, I've had the gearbox tweaked, replaced both floor pans with new ones (from Brazil!), put in a 10-gallon foam-baffled fuel cell, and had a new dual-port 1600cc VW engine installed (with a heater, which apparently was not standard equipment in Brazil).
Also new: both seat mounts, muffler with dual exhausts, rear wheel cylinders, steering damper, four new tires and two dash switches (headlights and ignition).
In the spring of 2011, I had a new StayFast fabric top made, got the doors and seats reupholstered in butterscotch tan vinyl, and had the carpet replaced. When I bought it, the dash -- which had been painted black -- was not in good shape. My wife and I scraped, stripped and sanded it, but I haven't found time to apply the Brazilian Rosewood stain and seal it.
Length – 153.9 inches
Width – 61.8 inches
Height – 53.1 inches (with top up)
Ground clearance – 7.1 inches
Weight - 1,676 lbs.
The TI came from the factory in Sao Paolo with no chrome. I had originally intended to bolt on some new chrome bumpers, but the more I drive it the more I like the black ones it came with. I may still add just a bit of chrome: front turn signals, left and right door mirrors, and the rear license lamp. Undecided whether to paint the alloy wheels and windscreen frame silver, and still can't make up my mind about the mock grille, although I'm leaning toward painting the "slats" silver.
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