This Dash-Mounted Coffee Maker Is Likely the Rarest Volkswagen Accessory Ever

Dash-Mounted Coffee Maker

Options on vintage cars can truly elevate their value, but not all of them are created equal. While some may delve into the realm of mundane, like different color combinations or unique trim pieces that only paint thickness gauge enthusiasts would obsess over, others tread the path of exceptional rarity and sophistication. Take, for instance, Honda’s analog navigation system from the 1980s or Oldsmobile’s “Visual Information Center,” a CRT touchscreen infotainment system that emerged decades ahead of its technological era.

Yet, there exists a category of rare options that ventures into the peculiar, like the enigmatic Hertella Auto Kaffeemachine—a dash-mounted coffee maker designed for the Volkswagen Beetle. Scant information persists about this unique accessory, with a lone German brochure serving as one of the few artifacts on the web. It’s so elusive that the only way to unearth more details is to connect with someone who has experienced it firsthand.

In my pursuit of coffee-infused knowledge, I stumbled upon Dave Hord of Classic Car Adventures through a Reddit post. His quest for the Hertella Auto Kaffeemachine led him to Serbia, where, after a failed attempt to convince a seller, he eventually secured one for himself. The journey of this coffee contraption didn’t end there; it traveled from Serbia to the U.S., only to introduce more mysteries upon arrival.

The machine, void of any discernible markings, left Hord grappling with questions about its voltage specifications. Testing with a 6V battery revealed a glowing indicator lamp, but the elusive heat left the coffee conundrum unresolved. The absence of a power switch only added to the intrigue—plug it into the cigarette lighter, and it simply heats up. As for the coffee it brews, Hord’s speculation suggests it might resemble a tea-brewing process, though the absence of instructions leaves much to the imagination.

Despite the potential shortcomings in coffee quality, the Hertella Auto Kaffeemachine boasts ingenious features. Porcelain cups with magnetic discs could attach to the machine, and a straightforward bracket facilitated easy removal for cleaning. However, it’s the rarity that sets this accessory apart, with Hord having encountered a mere six units in his three-year quest. As far as anyone knows, that might be the entire surviving population of these quirky coffee makers.

Though the Hertella Kaffeemachine may not have been the pinnacle of coffee perfection, it came with a hefty price tag in its heyday—roughly $136 adjusted for inflation. Today, these relics command prices as high as $900, making them a luxury for the few who appreciate the eccentric charm of a vintage Bug with a dash-mounted coffee companion. So, while your Cars and Coffee companions might question the quality of your bean water, they can’t deny the allure of the rare machine adorning your Bug’s dashboard.

Originally posted 2023-12-19 11:50:26.