Sunday, October 21, 2007

"Home is where the heart is..."

"... on the Bus!"

Hey there my liberal hippy friends...your chariot has arrived! Remember this? you remember anything from the sixties for that matter? Don't ask me. I wasn't born until '65.

Volkswagen is investigating whether it can design and build a more simple replacement for the historic Camper van.

It may seem like a strange alliance, but Volkswagen and British rock group The Who have joined forces. And the result could see the return of the firm’s much loved camper van.

According to VW, the new Camper will almost certainly be built in the US, and it’s equally likely that it will be badged Bulli – a name that the company has only recently registered to itself.

Dude, like don't get your hopes up. VW has promised this a couple times before.

Here's some VW Bus history!

1947 Ben Pon, a Dutch distributor of Volkswagens, sketches his ideas for the Transporter after seeing VW Beetle-based flatbed trucks used to carry components around the first Volkswagen factory in Wolfsburg.

1948 Pon's idea for a commercial vehicle is officially accepted by Volkswagen. Many of the components, including the engine, transmission and running gear are borrowed directly from the Beetle.

1950 The Kombi is introduced. The seats are easily removed to facilitate loading of cargo, making it the first combination people/package hauler, hence the name "Kombi".

1951 The Samba Bus (also known as the Micro Bus DeLuxe) is introduced. It is essentially a Kombi bus with all the bells and whistles for passenger comfort included. These include more windows, a sunroof, updated interior, wet bar, surfboard racks, and a good deal of chrome on the exterior.

1952 The pickup version of the Transporter goes into production.

1959 Two performance improvements are introduced: engine power is increased to 34hp (that's not a typo)

1965 Engine is upgraded to an output of 44 horsepower at 4000 rpm. Transporters are still passed on the highway by everything except heavily-laiden ice cream trucks, but with some persistence, they eventually catch up later that night.

1966 Seat belts are introduced.

1972 The automatic transmission is made available on all models except the pickup.

1975 The 2 liter engine is introduced, providing 70 horsepower at 4200 rpm. Small engine size finally pays off as owners of large V-8 powered vans are stuck in around-the-block lines at filling stations during the gas crisis while bus owners cruise on by.

1979 The third generation Transporter or 'Vanagon' is introduced.

1982 While other Volkswagen vehicles were now water-cooled, the Transporter had hung on to its air-cooled heritage. No longer - the Transporter now features a water-cooled 1.9 liter flat-four engine, also known as a "waterboxer".

1986 The 2.1 liter waterboxer engine is introduced. Highway speeds approaching 100 mph can be attained, but are not recommended.

Peace out!


Bike Bubba said...

Ah, fond memories of the VW Van....riding behind one, even one whose piston rings are NOT worn out, was not a pleasant bicycling experience. Back when I was in shape, though, one didn't always HAVE to ride BEHIND the Microbus...

It also turns out that some newer VW models burn quite a bit of oil as well--the "Bug" even has/had a note for a time warning of high oil usage.

The more things change...

Anonymous said...

i wish i lived in the sixties man! Those vehicles rock, they look freakin awesome and they just rock. I would party in one of those things all the time if i had the chance...