Volkswagen’s Classic Hippie-Van Comes Back
Get out your denim bell-bottoms, moccasins and John Lennon glasses, because rumours are afloat that the classic Volkswagen hippie-van may come back. Board member, Dr. Heinz-Jakob Neusser revealed at the New York Auto Show that they’re working on an electric version of the classic Camper.
Initially known only as a ‘microbus’ or ‘minibus’, the van achieved popularity during the counterculture movement of the ’60s and came to be known as the “Hippie van”. Production for the iconic bus was outsourced to Brazil in the ’70s due to changes in German safety regulations. In 2013 the assembly-line was halted altogether as it failed to meet a 2014 modification to Brazillian safety standards.
However, keeping the regulations in mind, Volkswagen intends on bringing the van back in the US and Neusser wants to maintain the features of the new electric van as close to the original hippie-van as possible. “First the wide, solid, D-Pillar, second the boxy design of the center section and, thirdly, the front end must have a very short overhang. The distance from the A-pillar to the front end must be very short.” Neusser said.
Over the years Volkswagen has come out with many versions of the hippie-van that did not match the original in terms of aesthetics like the 2001 Retro Microbus and 2011 Bulli as shown above. However, this latest rumour suggests that the makers are serious about re-capturing what made the ’60s hippie-van so magical. As of now, the idea is only a concept and we’ll have to wait and see if they’re able to begin manufacturing for the masses.