TUTHILL PREPARES OFF-THE-PEG BEETLE
VW for low-cost rallying
Francis Tuthill has unveiled a plan to make the VW Beetle an affordable package for endurance rallying and is heading to Africa next week to test the project on the inaugural Rift Valley 1000 Rally.
The 1974 Beetle was built in Francis’ workshop at Tuthill Porsche to the famous Salzburg rally VW specification. It will now tackle up to 1000 competitive miles in the five-day event that starts on December 9.
“I’ve had this idea for a simple, affordable endurance rally car for a while,” said Tuthill. “People are now rallying all over the world, in search of great experiences. The question that so many ask is, what car can they use for rallying that does not cost a lot of money relatively speaking, but is reliable and enjoyable to cover thousands of miles in? There is only one answer for me: it has to be avolkswagen Beetle.”
In 1977, Tuthill finished the London to Sydney Rally 36th overall in a Beetle. While he still owns that car, much has been learned over 40 years. Tuthill’s latest build is a fresh take on a contemporary Beetle rally car.
“The concept is to offer a turnkey endurance rally car for roughly the same price as the donor Porsche 911 required to build a top-flight Tuthill endurance rally car. The aim is just to finish,” said Tuthill. “This project has to start somewhere, and what better place than Kenya in December, on a beautiful rally with great rally people? I am very excited to see how the Beetle performs.”