In two separate incidents vandals in Arizona broke the windows on a 1969 Volkswagen bus, leaving its elderly owner with no transportation or way to make a living. So members of local car clubs donated money to get the van fixed.
Three customized Volkswagen Buses (pictured above) made to look like blocks of Tillamook cheddar cheese are safe again after being stolen on July 12, and two men are in police custody for the alleged theft.
Whether known as the Transporter, Kombi or simply the Bus, the Volkswagen Type 2 became almost as much of a style icon as the Beetle, but it just went out of production. However, a couple in England is keeping the design alive with its Dub Box camper. Mixing the classic, '60s VW look with retro interior design and some modern features, the result is a very attractive little trailer. For about the past year, they have also been available in the US.
From the time a vehicle first enters a family, stories will be told about it. People talk about their road trips, or a special bumper sticker or some random memory that their vehicle was involved in. As the years go on, the memories and stories that people have with their cars grows, and eventually, it turns into a cult following. Spend enough time traipsing around the world's roads, and the stories and memories turn a vehicle into an icon.
A Brazilian politician tried to save it, unsuccessfully, so the final Last Edition Volkswagen Type 2 Kombi was produced on December 20, 2013 and now resides in a vintage museum at Volkswagen's Commercial Vehicles HQ in Hanover, Germany.
Brazil: the country of carnivals, indescribable beauty adjacent to abject poverty, Ayrton Senna and old Volkswagen models. Only they're not old – they're new, they're just based on old designs. The original Beetle continued production there long after it had been phased out elsewhere, but the original Kombi van has lasted much longer. That ends today, however, with the iconic VW Microbus ambling out of production on the last day of 2013.
Manufacture of the longest-produced model in the global automotive industry, the Volkswagen Type 2 Microbus, is finally coming to an end in Brazil after 56 years in production, which started in September 1957. The blue VW Kombi Last Edition you see here (click on the image above to enlarge) is one of 600 that will be produced before new safety regulations in the country force Volkswagen to phase it out.
We're big fans of the Volkswagen bus, from the original Type 2 and its descendants, to the Vanagon that replaced it, and even the front-drive Eurovan. While VW hasn't sold one of these in the U.S. since it discontinued the Eurovan in 2003, the rest of the world has enjoyed the Transporter T5 for the past decade. The VWs are immensely popular camper vans in Europe (especially those with pop-top roofs), and the novel Doubleback conversion shown above takes the formula to another level.
Arguably more than any other mainstream automaker, Volkswagen is serious about its heritage. So much so that it appointed Franz-Josef Paefgen – former chief executive of Audi, Bentley and Bugatti – to head up its classics program. In this capacity, Paefgen oversees the heritage departments of each of the group's brands, but while its commercial vehicles operation may seem the least likely to preserve its past, today's announcement proves that assumption wrong.
As a car-obsessed tot, your author used to snuggle up in his bed, pretending he was taking a long road trip in a Volkswagen camper van. The fantasy went so far as to include a small fan so there would be a constant rhythmic chatter similar to the air-cooled flat-four that helped build the Volkswagen name. While pure imagination capably transformed a twin bed into a Westfalia-trimmed Type II on a nightly basis, a user over at Instructables has gone even further than just dreaming, winding up with
We certainly understand the need to scrap older vehicles. Not only is it impractical to preserve every car that's ever been built, but why would you want to? That said, decisions to destroy old cars, whether under the auspices of a government program like Cash For Clunkers or by profit motive at an automotive recycler, should be made by informed individuals. That way, vehicles that may have potential as collectibles don't unnecessarily vanish.
Volkswagen buyers in the Netherlands will soon have the opportunity to get their hands on a brand-new 2012 Volkswagen Type 2 Microbus. That's right, the original hippie van will be available brand-new in Holland as a 2012 model.