Back in the mid-60s Volkswagen was looking for a successor to its then rather outdated Type 34 sports coupe, better known as the Karmann Ghia. At the same time Porsche was striving to expand its position in the market with a sports car in the promising segment beneath the 911. Facing this challenge Ferry Porsche and VW’s CEO Heinrich Nordhoff agreed in spring 1966 on a joint venture destined to benefit both parties. Porsche was given the assignment by Volkswagen to develop a low-cost mid-engined sports car intended to enter the market as a Volkswagen with four cylinders and as a Porsche with a six-cylinder boxer engine.
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