The Volkswagen Microbus Concept Car (also known as the Volkswagen New Microbus and Volkswagen Microbus Concept) was an early-2000s concept car recalling the original Volkswagen Microbus and first presented at the 2001 North American International Auto Show.[not verified in body]
The new Microbus was completely modern compared to its predecessor, featuring a 7-inch screen in the center console and a second ceiling-located 7-inch screen that allowed the driver to see behind the vehicle.
In June 2002 Volkswagen announced that the Microbus, using the platform of the forthcoming T5 light van, was slated for production commencing during 2003 at the company's Hannover plant, ramping up to 80,000 units annually by 2005. The launch was deferred, however, and the project was formally canceled in early 2005.
In 2005, VW instead announced that Chrysler would build minivans for Volkswagen in the United States, while in Europe the VW Transporter Multivan would fill the niche previously intended for the reborn Microbus. The Chrysler built Volkswagen Routan was released to the North American market in September 2008. Unrelated to the new Microbus, the Routan is a seven-seat minivan and is a rebadged variant of the Chrysler RT platform, fifth-generation Dodge Grand Caravan and Chrysler Town & Country.
In September 2008, Autoblog reported that the Microbus Concept might actually yet be produced, and at the 2011 Geneva Motor Show, Volkswagen unveiled a second, smaller concept van (also reminiscent of the first generation Transporter) called the Bulli. In the event, the Bulli also was not actually produced as envisioned in 2011.
Bulli concept, on display at the 2011 Geneva Motor Show.
Bulli concept, on display at the 2011 Tokyo Motor Show.
- "Neues vom Auto: VW baut den neuen Microbus is Hannover". Auto, Motor und Sport. 2002. Heft 14: Seite 12. 26 June 2002.
- "Chicago 2008: Volkswagen unveils the newish Routan minivan". Autoblog.com, Jeremy Korzeniewski, Feb 6 2008.
- "2009 Volkswagen Routan Minivan - - What's New for 2009". About.com, Jeff James. Archived from the original on 2008-01-08.
- "Rumormill: VW Microbus back on the table?". Autoblog.com, Alex Nunez, Sep 6 2008.
- "Geneva 2011: Volkswagen Bulli". topgear.com, Paul Horrell, March 1, 2011.
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- 4 Volkswagen Microbus Concepts From the Past and Present - Motor Trend
- Automotive.com, First Look: Volkswagen Microbus, 2007
- Concept Cars (UK), Concept Car Database, Volkswagen Microbus