I think it's safe to say that the designers of the VW 1500 were familiar with the Ferrari 250 GT.
Most obviously seen in the taillight design, but in lots of other details too. John von Neumann of Competition Motors Hollywood fame had a hand in the development of the 250 GT California in the late '50s. Coincidence?
And the Abarth exhaust on Freddy's 1500S takes the similarity one step further.
[images borrowed from qv500.com and Freddy's VW1500s blog]