THE HISTORY OF VOLKSWAGEN
Volkswagen was perhaps the start of motoring as we know it today. From the plans and ideas of Ferdinand Porsche in Germany 1931, the rst ever ‘people’s car’ was created. Adolf Hitler took a keen interest in the design, demanding that it be made cheap and easy to repair, so that ordinary German citizens could afford it. By 1934 the basic shape was one of the worlds most distinctive and best-loved car designs – the beetle- was in place.
VW TYPE 2 T1 TRANSPORTERS
In 1950 the Type 2 was put into production, this was manufactured as a commercial vehicle that was originally based on the beetle. After extensive improvements and tests the type 2 was born, this was the basis and start of the VW camper. Production carried on and the VW camper took over the world.
THE MAN WHO INVENTED THE TRANSPORTER
Ben Pon was a Dutch automobile importer. Pon introduced the VWs into the American market in 1949, by 1960 there was set to be half a million beetles imported to the states.
Ben Pon made such a difference to Volkswagen, they invited him to the factory where the beetles he had been exporting were made. During his time at the VW factory he drew a quick sketch of a car, which inspired the engineers at VW and was eventually developed into the VW Type 2 Transporter, beginning the birth of the radical Transporter series which is still alive today.
Due to all the work Ben Pon did with Volkswagen he became a well known figure and a was known as the father of the Type 2 Transporter.
THE BIRTH OF THE TRANSPORTER
Within three years of Ben Pon initial sketch the Vehicle had been made reality and was being produced known as the VW Transporter. This model was revealed in 1949, with it being put onto the market in March 1950. Within the 40year life span of the VW it was developed and adapted to many different styles and varieties. The basic shape of the vehicle was kept the same but was revised periodically to keep it up to date. The type 2 was eventually issued in ve basic models, T1 – T5. It has been estimated that around 5 million of these vehicles have been produced and sold, with some of the designs being a prototype for other car manufacturers. The basic model was a delivery van with no side windows and the entire area of internal space behind the front seats available for cargo loading. This was known as the panel van and there was a raised roof version with even more space. Another popular variation was the Kombi, this model had removable rear seats and three windows per side for a choice of freight or passenger transport.
THE MODERN CAMPERVAN
To bring the T5 into the camping sector, Volkswagen developed a rail system within the van which means you can clip different aspects into the van. The seats worked on this system, so you could take them out and replace them with pre fab camper van interior.
There were two models brought out which consisted of the campervan interior: Kombi or Multivan Beach and the California. The Kombi/Multivan Beach has a fold out bed, but the California is more of the traditional camper having beds and other facilities such as benches, tables and a sink.
The T5 won many nominations and became a great success as a versatile vehicle that Volkswagen offered. Many VW enthusiasts will still favour the older models, but nevertheless the T5 is the new state of the art camper and passenger van, which took the public by storm and is still in production to this today.