New Volkswagen T2 Microbus Headed for Europe… and the States?

Volkswagen Type 2 Microbus

In certain crowds, mention of the Volkswagen Type 2 results in fond memories of a wild, but lost, youth.

To others, dropping “Type 2” in casual conversation results in nothing but blank stares. Call it a VW Microbus, though, and people know in an instant exactly what you’re talking about. Whatever it’s known as, there’s no denying VW created an icon that played a part in defining an entire generation in the 1960s.

Introduced in 1950, the panel van was Volkswagen’s second model. (Thus Type 2. The Beetle, of course, was Type 1.)

Although the Microbus hasn’t been available in the U.S. in decades, it never has ended production. That’s right, in some places, it’s still possible to take home a brand-new VW Type 2. Could it re-enter the U.S. market?

South Americans have been enjoying uninterrupted playtime with the Type 2 in recent decades, while North Americans and Europeans have been left to chase classic models. Now, word is the Type 2’s presence will grow, as it is slated for the streets of Holland. Yup, Volkswagen buyers in the Netherlands will soon have the opportunity to get their hands on a brand-new 2012 Volkswagen Type 2 Microbus. Well, sort of all-new. Our friends at Car and Driver sum it up nicely:

Vokswagen T2 Camper vanDutch Volkswagen dealership Volkswagen Campercentrum in Amersfoort, Netherlands, is offering brand-new T2 models for a whopping €45,000 or so. How is it legal? The trick is to bring the T2 into Continental Europe through Danbury Vans in the U.K., which has imported the T2 for several years. “There is no other way to get these vehicles legal except through the U.K.,” admits Martijn Siegers of the Campercentrum. “Technically, we sell them as used cars, but they are just briefly registered in the U.K. and have zero kilometers.”

Built in Brazil, the Type 2 hasn’t changed much visually in 60 years. However, the van’s characteristic air-cooled flat 4-cylinder engine has been replaced with a more modern 1.4-liter inline four.

Even with the new motor, there’s no hope of seeing new T2 models sputtering up and down U.S. streets. The VW Bulli concept, though, remains a distinct possibility.

Would you be interested in a new Volkswagen Microbus, or is it better off left in the past? I’d take a Microbus over a Routan any day!


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  1. correcto Nathan. it is a fact that you can kill yourself on skates if you try a bit,,my theory is that manufacturers try to make their newest offerings more palatable for certain people , and that they accomplish with the so called focus groups, that crowd has been the responsible for the death of the type 2 , the original land cruiser , the original jeep the k5 blazer..I loathe them because of their choices (only sports cars seem inmune) we all get force feed with their softmobiles..pity..but you know we wont win there are way too many of them

  2. really randy? VW is maiming and killing people? and Europeans are far more important and valuable than other human beings, you’re right. ever think it could be bad drivers or thick headed jerks that hurt people? the T2 was, and always will be an icon. i’v worked on them, driven them, and road-tripped in them, and in all my experience the people who drive VW transporters are some of the nicest people on the planet. they know their car is slow and a proverbial death trap, so they generally try to avoid collisions, as anybody should, unless you feel safe in your mini van, then feel free to run into whomever you like. as can be seen by it’s new price tag, not just anybody is going to be owning a fresh T2, the ones who will be, will be the ones who are passionate about them.

  3. Well, the reason third world citizens can still buy the type 2 is because it’s OK for VW to maim and kill customers with an outdated and unsafe design in those countries. Here and in Europe our governments take some care to protect citizens from corporate product mayhem.
    I certainly can see no reason to have this type of vehicle in a market full of much better (and safer) designs like minivans and light trucks.

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