Rob Ganley
Group editor

See other News articles filed in ‘Base vehicles’ written by Rob Ganley
   
Volkswagen has unveiled a new version of its Microbus concept vehicle at the Geneva Motor Show.

It updates the ‘Microbus’ concept displayed in 2001, which was VW’s first attempt at creating a modern reinterpretation of the classic Type 2. The Microbus’ retro design wowed motor show crowds, but never made it into production.

Volkswagen has unveiled a new version of its Microbus concept vehicle at the Geneva Motor Show.

 

It updates the ‘Microbus’ concept displayed in 2001, which was VW’s first attempt at creating a modern reinterpretation of the classic Type 2. The Microbus’ retro design wowed motor show crowds, but never made it into production.

 

The latest iteration of the concept is called ‘Bulli’, after an early name given to the original Type 2 Transporter in 1949. It features a six-seater configuration, with two benches, each seating three. At 3.99 metres in length, it’s primarily a people carrier and doesn’t have the space inside to be turned into a California-style kitchen camper. However, the two benches in the ‘Bulli’ fold flat to create a bed, which indicates that VW is not ignoring the Type 2’s storied history as a camper.

 

The ‘Bulli’ is propelled by an electric motor, good for 113bhp and 192 lb/ft of torque, which is powered by a 40 kWh battery pack concealed in the floor, giving it a claimed range of 186 miles. The concept is also capable of accommodating more workaday 1.0 or 1.4-litre petrol and diesel powerplants.

 

Our sister magazine Autocar reports from Geneva that the ‘Bulli’ has already been green-lit for production, and will be based on a lengthened version of the current ‘MQB’ platform that underpins the VW Golf – this is a passenger platform rather than a commercial one, raising question marks about the concept’s ability to function as a proper camper, due to payload requirements and so forth.

 

The ‘Bulli’s minimalist retro interior will need a few tweaks before making production – the lack of a shift lever and tachometer (unnecessary for an electric vehicle) will need to be addressed, and they’ll probably find some way to introduce a centre console, as well – perhaps by cutting the passenger count down to five. The cutting-edge iPad-controlled infotainment system is likely to be ditched as well, although this is one feature we’d love to see in the finished product.

Share with friends

Follow us on

Most recent motorhome reviews

The Practical Motorhome Chausson Flash 530 – 1 - You can get the 2017 Chausson Flash 530 on the Ford Transit (as tested) or on the Fiat Ducato (© Alf Alderson/Practical Motorhome)
The Practical Motorhome 2017 Elddis Autoquest 195 review – 1 - The 2017 Elddis Autoquest 195 has a licence-friendly MTPLM of 3500kg (© Peter Baber/Practical Motorhome)
The Practical Motorhome La Strada Regent L review – 1 - The German van converter with an Italian name is back in the UK after many years – and the Regent L is one of La Strada's flagship models (© Peter Baber/Practical Motorhome)
The Practical Motorhome Wingamm Micros-Plus review – 1 - The slick GRP bodyshell sits well with the Volkswagen T6 base vehicle – the Micros-Plus is priced from £62,000 OTR (© Andy Jenkinson/Practical Motorhome)
The Practical Motorhome Autocruise Select 184 review – 1 - The Autocruise Select 184 is priced from £39,885 OTR, however our test ’van had a price tag of £44,570 (© Phil Russell/Practical Motorhome)
The Practical Motorhome Hymer B-Class DynamicLine 588 review – 1 - This four-berth Hymer motorhome costs from £73,500 OTR, £85,128 as tested (© Nick Harding/Practical Motorhome)