A no engine fan is aware, that the car market is very demanding and is constantly changing. But there are exceptions that break with this dynamic. Many users and collectors opt for classic models that have become rolling history. An obvious and striking case is in two German models, the Volkswagen van T1 and Volkswagen van T2, although currently only be purchased used. Today there are many people who drive this unique vehicle through the streets and highways around the world. And is why the models have connected so effectively, with lovers of a lifestyle…'Free and unattached'.
The Volkswagen T1 means the beginning of a strategic line of success; the Transporter series of the famous known German firm. The first model was launched in 1950 with an attractive modern design for the time. Loaded with dynamic lines that broke with a more conventional or classical aesthetics. A vehicle that has a great versatility and a more attractive price, two features that users seek, and desire to purchase such vehicles. There is a 25 hp boxer engine and a fully customised interior space that has allowed a payload of up to 750 kilos of goods, or to comfortably carry up to 8 passengers. The success of the Volkswagen T1 came up, and just over ten years, has sold nearly one million units. During the fifteen years of their production engine evolution it was constant, going to 44 hp in its latest version.
The year 1967 was chosen to launch the second model of the Transporter series, the Volkswagen T2. The strategy was clear, they had to keep the lightness and vehicle performance without sacrificing the implementation of new technologies or the development of more powerful engines. Its aesthetic line remained largely variations and focused to get a much brighter interior space. During the twelve years of manufacturing this model, the engines reached the not inconsiderable power of 80 hp. The Volkswagen T2 was an icon in the 'hippie' movement, which found in this model, a philosophy of life that suited their needs.
In the second-hand market it is common to find the Volkswagen T1 and T2 Volkswagen. A golden opportunity to enjoy one of the most famous cars in history. Another factor to consider is that despite years of manufacturing these vehicles, care and maintenance is usually excellent, which favors the purchase of a Volkswagen T1 or T2, is a resounding success.
It's a collector piece, for those looking for a vehicle that allows them to break up the monotony, enjoy family life with a different form or practice, all kinds of mountain sports or aquatics. No doubt a perfect choice full of beauty, symbolism and history.
Second-hand VW T1 and T2
One of the vehicles that has permeated the public and has been designed for private use, is the VW Transporter range of vans. These models of the German mark have become an icon, even becoming standard bearers as important as was the 'hippie' movement of the 60s, representing a new way of understanding life movements. Today this model is in its sixth generation, but still one can find second-hand VW T1 in very good condition. The same applies to the second-hand VW T2, which can also be found at very competitive prices. It was in 1950 when the VW T1 was launched and since then has continued to gain followers, even TODAY! The VW Kombie, is highly prized, although its production has ceased. The VW van T1 for sale, second-hand, are also known as VW Kombis.
The VW is a van with a long history. Even today there are models of second-hand VW T1 c.1975, which was the last year in which these vehicles were produced. Its production began in Germany in 1950 and continued until 1967. In 1953 it started in Brazil and was put on sale from the T1 VW factory in 1975, for the last time. Since then these vans and features have gone hand in hand between individuals and dealers selling used cars. VW T2 second-hand models that can be found on the market may correspond to those manufactured in Germany in the period from 1967 to 1979, which took place in Mexico from 1971 to 1994 or the most recent built in Brazil from 1976 until 2013, when world production of this model ceased.
A variety of bodies
There is no doubt that one of the reasons for the market success of the VW van is the wide variety of existing bodies. From the beginning, it was put on the market, as a panelled cargo vehicle, to carry goods with a pick up double cabin and convertible top and motor home type.
The engine of both models is 4-cylinder boxer air cooled, which means that it does not require a water cooling system or water pump, hoses or cylinder head gasket. Yes, it incorporates a small oil cooler. This feature turned this model into a very convenient option for places with extreme climates and this was one of the main advantages over other models of the time, allowing a global expansion model, regardless of the existing climate. It is a very reasonable price and low maintenance costs, also helped this great diffusion.
'Hippies' Used Volkswagen Vans T1 and T2
T1, is also known as 'Kombi' in most European countries, is the 'hippie van', Volkswagen par excellence. In fact, it has become a real collector's item for many lovers of aesthetics that characterized the 60s worldwide. A few years after its appearance, the German brand unveiled to the world the T2, updating the previous design, which was a real revolution.
Today, although it seems impossible, you can still buy a 'hippie' Volkswagen van, especially in the spot market. Plus, it is, that many users have remodeled and refurbished these vehicles keeping in with the times, with its original charm. Therefore, we will dedicate this article to discuss these two legendary VW models
History of the Volkswagen 'hippie' van
The history of the VW T1 that can be found today in the market, starts shortly after the conclusion of World War II. Specifically, it was in the factory, that Volkswagen had in the German city of Wolfsburg, and at that time, was under British control. This was April 1947. At this time, the Dutch businessman Ben Pon requested permission, to market the vehicles of his own company in the Netherlands.
Ben Pon is especially relevant when talking about the Volkswagen Kombi or T1 because the idea of this van was born from it. Specifically, Ben Pon came to see the basis of a VW Beetle that ran the manufacturing plant as a freight car very effectively. Why not create a vehicle with similar characteristics but specially designed for charging commercial goods?
Indeed, any VW Kombi for sale available in the market today, was born, solely and exclusively as a freight car. In 1948 he began to build the first prototype under the name Volkswagen Type 29. In fact, it was not until 1950 when he confirmed the name under which it is known,… Volkswagen vans.
Specifically, the manufacture of the popular Volkswagen 'hippie' van began on March 8, 1950. Shortly thereafter, due to the incredible demand that existed in South America, which was, in general, higher than in Europe, the firm decided to open a first assembly plant in Sao Paulo, Brazil. Also in 1956, in Mexico. In Europe it was manufactured between 1950 and 1967, while in South America it was between 1953 and 1975.
Characteristics of VW T1 and T2 for sale
Any VW Kombi T1 or T2 for sale, if not modified by any of the owners who have had, has some technical and very specific and recognizable mechanical characteristics. First, all models were equipped with 1,100 cc engine in the rear, something that was very common in the 50s and which reduced the volume of the noise, making the whole much more of a compact body.
Meanwhile, this engine had four opposed cylinders and was air cooled. In addition, it was able to deliver a maximum power of 25 hp, which gave it to reach a speed of 80 kilometers per hour. Shortly thereafter, due to the high demand, the vans began to be manufactured with 1,500cc engines that provided a power of 50 hp and reached 110 km / h. It is estimated that in its first year, 100,000 units were sold. Ten years later, this figure grew to 1.8 million.
Keys to the success of this old Volkswagen van
Both the vans, Volkswagen T1 and T2 have become collector's items for many lovers of old cars. The first was really popular during the fifties and sixties in Germany as well as in Brazil, where it was manufactured until 1975. So, even today, in an old Volkswagen van T1, can be found as main features, a front window divided and folding. At the time, the plus 8 was especially known for its high load capacity. Also, in the first three generations engine it was used and worked boxer air type.
As for the external aspect, a Volkswagen T1 was especially noted for its colourful and cheerful rounded appearance. Originally, the main novelty compared to other vans, the driver's seat was located just above the engine. However, for safety reasons this finally joined in a panel or enclosure to be fully protected. A chassis upper side, highlighted by small windows, the doors of the cabin, however, also had ventilation. Finally, a rear window and a bumper was also added.
From a cultural standpoint, the former Volkswagen became a symbol of the 'hippie' community. This group often painted vans and flowery vibrant colors and turned the interior into living space. In fact, this type of vehicle morphed, to later, be famous motor homes. It happened with something similar with T2, the following logic. This is true even today continuing to be known as 'Volkswagen T2', old as the 'bus', the 'microbus' or 'minibus' and is characterised, especially by its rear engine. Such was the success of this model which until 2013, was produced halfway around the world!
Volkswagen Kombi T1 blue
The van Volkswagen T2 opted out for a front with front wheel curves. The old-cooled engine is helped by lateral openings that draw in air. Indeed, the T2 began manufacture from 1967 and up until July 1971. T2a and T2b occurred from this year until 1979. In both models a large tail light was also incorporated, known as 'ears'. In addition, front disc brakes and rear drums and steel wheels which reduced noise levels, were added.
In the seventies also, the first electric model T2 arose. As time passed, new accessories emerged, which makes it fully distinguishable: a large grill made of plastic and a large bumper. No lacking for even the most luxurious version, such as the 1989 model, which was called 'Caravelle', with tinted windows and metallic finish. In 1995 he began to also use a 1.8 litre engine, water cooled. The latest models were further capable of reaching a maximum speed of 133 kilometers per hour and consume up to 12.9 litres per 100 kilometers and an area of 2.290 mm.
Now, let's talk about the current Used Volkswagen T1 or T2 that can now be found for sale. Factors that marked his success were many and varied. First, it is essential to note that these vehicles were REALLY versatile. Therefore, not only were used to transport goods, as was its original purpose, but also used as ambulances, vans, and motor homes, etc etc.
The fact must added, that this van, was manufactured using it as a basis for the efficiency. That is, at a time when large engines that consume huge amounts of fuel, VW released a powerful yet economical petrol van whose expenditure was quite low. This was, without doubt, really important for introduction into the US market. Meanwhile, its 4-cylinder air-cooled system, water pump/radiator or head gasket was not needed. Therefore, it was equally efficient in desert climates such as freezing weather and mechanics was extremely reliable.
Obviously, the design played an essential role in the success of the Volkswagen 'hippie van'. And it is that it's rounded shapes, its huge headlights, the 'W' of the front with reliefs ... All were elements that helped to perceive the VW T1 rather than as a vehicle such as a pet. And the front area recreates a happy smiling face, which generates an enormous empathy for them.
Features Volkswagen T2
Used Volkswagen T2, which currently can be found, is the natural successor to the T1. Specifically, it began to be produced, in 1967, in Germany, and was in force until 1979 in the Old Continent. However, as it was the case with its predecessor. In South America, it enjoyed greater success and, therefore, was drawn up for several more years. Specifically, the VW plant in Mexico, production remained until 1994, and in Brazil until 2013.
In aesthetic terms, the truth is that Volkswagen T2 is quite similar to the T1, while it is true that their lines became less rounded and ignored the big 'W' embossed on the front. However, it is quite mechanically refined to include a 1390cc engine with 4 cylinders in line capable of providing a power of 78 HP and speeds up to 135 km / h. In addition, over time, the German company marketed a version, that ran on diesel.
Although we no longer have anything to do with this and the 'hippie's vans' The VW of which we are talking about, this model gave rise to all subsequent versions that appeared on the market gradually and convinced, definitively, to identify this line of vehicles as alternative and different. Therefore, despite all the time that has passed since the outbreak of T2, its subsequent updates (currently, exists the 'T6'), it remains in high demand by fans going camping and seeking nature in general.
Why VW vans T1 and T2 became the 'hippie' aesthetic referents?
The mixture of space, design and price of these vans, especially T1, sold like hotcakes during the 60s, and also assumed an excellent opportunity for youngsters in every way. In addition, these models were very favorable for customisation, so the 'hippie' movement found them to be the ideal way to transmit their aesthetics.
The nomadic life, and the relatively psychedelic design T1, fits like a glove in the 'hippie' movement, who gifted this van flowers, doves of peace, and, ultimately, of all the iconography associated with it. For its part, it also helped that, in 1963, Bob Dylan illustrated the cover of his album, with the 'The Freewheelin' model, being one of them. Many festivals of music of the era, like the mythical Woodstock, were flooded with these vehicles.
All this contributed to that. Right now, everyone who retains a VW T1 or T2 has a treasure in his hands. And, if that were not enough, the restoration of these vehicles is high on the agenda. Therefore, it is still possible to buy them, either with their original finishes and engines, or completely restored in many places. In fact, even concentrations of these vans are carried out around the world.
In short, if you are looking for a VW T1or VW T2 to buy, and fulfill your dream, to have in your garage, an authentic and inimitable aesthetic 'hippie' van, you now have the opportunity to buy easily and safely. In this sense, the market offers a lot of possibilities that can you can take advantage of.
We hope that after this article, you have solved all your questions related to Volkswagen T1 and T2 vans and understand more, why they are still considered as the quintessential 'hippies' vehicles. Surely, these are models, that formed an essential part of the history of the world in the second half of the twentieth century.