Virtanen Restoration Panels company founder, Mika Virtanen (born in 1970) lives and works in Vesilahti, Finland. He was 15 years old when he began VW restoration hobby in 1985. He found an abandoned, poor VW oval beetle ’54. In a few years the oval was restored by young Virtanen, and the oval served as his first daily driver. The oval beetle is still in his garage, even in better condition now.
During the years, Virtanen has restored e.g. a Split window beetle made in Jan ’52 and June ’52. He became interested in making repair panels during the welding work of his Type 2 Panel van ’67. The van was badly rusted and Virtanen couldn’t find repair panels good enough for his demand. So he began to making repair panels himself.
After making the repair panels for his Type 2, Virtanen began manufacturing them also for old beetles. He made e.g. running boards for VW38 #6. Today he is making dozens of items for the VW beetle from 1938 up. All panels are made in Vesilahti, Finland.
Mika Virtanen graduated as a Master of Science in Mechanical Engineering in 1997; his major subjects were production engineering and materials science. Before his career as panel manufacturer, he worked for Valmet Automotive Inc. as production development engineer and Nokia Inc. as design for manufacturing specialist. His family consist of a wife, two children and a cat.