Posts Tagged ‘volkswagen’
it isn’t very often that you get the opportunity to photograph one of your cars at freeway speeds piloted by an entity other than yourself. but…. by cracky, this opportunity materialized a few weeks ago whilst enroute to the uber dork-fest known as the rose city bug-in. depicted here is my 1960 volkswagen beetle in fine fiddle.
The Volkswagen Type 181 “Kurierwagen”, popularly known in the United Kingdom as the Trekker, in the United States as the Thing, and in Mexico as the Safari, was a small military vehicle produced by Volkswagen from 1969 to 1983, although civilian sales stopped in 1980. It was based in part on Volkswagen’s Type 1 (Beetle), and was a continuation and improvement over the Kübelwagen, which had been used by the German military during World War II. The name Kübelwagen is an abbreviation of Kübelsitzwagen, meaning “bucket-seat car”.
i spotted this single cab on approach to the rose city bug-in. i got me quite a hankerin’ for a nice restored single cab with canvas hoop cargo bay. if anyone knows of a good one for sale, why let me know !
i loves me a good volkswagen bus. i spied this one tootling down interstate 5 with a sticker in the window proclaiming “0-60 in 11 minutes”. it was piloted by a young lad who looked not a day past 19 and every bit a character. i remember my friend steve lodefink had a volkswagen bus in college…. t’was in sweet condition and i believe it was a ’76 in two-tone cream yellow and white. i also recall him telling a tale of how he fell asleep at the wheel and the bus flipped over on its side and skidded that way for 100 yards coming to a rest in jackpot nevada. luckily ‘old fink emerged with nary a scratch. magic bus.
(photo courtesy of tamerlane) The Volkswagen Beetle was an economy car produced by the German auto maker Volkswagen from 1938 until 2003. It used an air cooled rear engined rear wheel drive. Over 21 million Beetles were produced in all. In the 1950s, it was more comfortable and powerful than most European small cars, having been designed for sustained high speed on the Autobahn, and ultimately became the longest-running and most-produced automobile of a single design. In 1933, Adolf Hitler gave the order to Ferdinand Porsche to develop a Volkswagen (literally, “people’s car” in German). Hitler required a basic vehicle capable of transporting two adults and three children at 100 km/h. The “People’s Car” would be available to citizens of the Third Reich through a savings scheme, or Sparkarte (savings booklet),at 990 Reichsmark, about the price of a small motorcycle.
there is no way around it, the volkswagen rabbit was a revolutionary vehicle. the boxy unlikely successor to the revered beetle, the rabbit represented the dawn of a new age of automobile design and technology…. a world away from the mechanical and hand-built aesthetic of the beetle. i spied this rabbit sprinting along and it occurred to me i seldom see nice roadworthy rabbits out and about.
i have been going through a pretty significant air-cooled volkswagen phase lately…… to the degree that i just purchased my 2nd beetle this year, a 1953 standard ‘zwitter’. there is something just so ‘right’ about an air-cooled volkswagen…. the quality, the simplicity, the mechanical nature, the design, the egalitarian appeal. i don’t see too many type 3′s running around, so when i spied this one i knew i had to apprehend it.
i spied this 1968 volkswagen campmobile careening down the highway and noticed someone took pains to paint “penny lane” on the back of it as well as lower the front end….. Vroooom! “In Penny Lane there is a fireman with an hourglass. And in his pocket is a portrait of the Queen. He likes to keep his fire engine clean. It’s a clean machine”
a sheep in wolve’s clothing, the porsche 914 is actually a volkswagen in disguise. don’t believe me ? the 914′s birth certificate belly-button plate clearly reads “manufactured by volkswagen”. i have always referred to these as the “ice cream sandwich car” due to the horizontal, rectangular flat nature of the design. Volkswagen: There Is No Substitute.
i spied a curious 1996 volkswagen golf parked in and around the general vicinity of my work-place. upon the first sighting i assumed it was owned and customized by some wacky artist trying to assert his/her artiness as it is always parked by a cluster of fine galleries. the next time i saw it i decided on two things: 1) i need to do a bit of research (which these days counts as spending 15 seconds on google) 2) i had to have one. i quickly discovered these multicolor golfs were factory made limited editions of approximately 260 cars and came in 4 color variations…. you can tell the original color of each version by the roof and rear pillar colors…. this car was originally blue and then panels were switched at factory. if anyone knows of a good condition harlequin for sale with a manual transmission i have cash money waiting for an acquisition. (photo courtesy Chris Haak as i haven’t been able to capture my local harlequin in motion)
“Well my baby, she’s alright, Well my baby, she’s clean out-of sight. Don’t you know that she’s … she’s some kind of wonderful.” some kind of wonderful indeed. you don’t see too many vehicular communes motoring down the road these days…. not as many as in the 1960′s-70′s i would surmise. this american made rabbit was not really road-worthy… it had a severe right-rear list, was over-loaded with what might be best described as band mates or fellow fugitives from an unknown realm. piled high with nook-sacks on the roof, suggestive in appearance of some sort of freakish cupcake. and nary a gas cap. you have to give them credit for running diesel though.
beetles, transporters, karmann-ghias & type III air-cooled volkswagens were the coolest cars ever built. they had an irresistible combination of austerity, functionality, affordability, quality, and were ingeniously engineered & designed. these cars appealed to people with brains: professors, hippies, architects, college kids, beatniks, enlightened suburbanites, frugal housewives, design conscious proletariats, etc. an air-cooled volkswagen was not merely an automobile, it became a physical manifestation of ideology, culture, equality and hope for a better world. perhaps the only similar galvanizing product that exists today is the iphone & apple computer…. yet these fall well short in the charm department compared to a minty fresh 1963 vw beetle.
vw beetle’s big brother……..