Funtodrive SUV couldn’t boonie bash — Volkswagen Kubelwagen

8 мая 2015 | Author: | Комментарии к записи Funtodrive SUV couldn’t boonie bash — Volkswagen Kubelwagen отключены
Volkswagen Kubelwagen

Fun-to-drive SUV couldn’t boonie

National Post ·

During the World War, one of the best the Allied forces had was the four-wheel-drive a go-anywhere, do-anything quarter-ton vehicle. It was manufactured by Willys-Overland Ford under licence). By the end of the some 600,000 had been

The Jeep’s reputation was so vaunted after the war, Willys-Overland marketing a civilian version the CJ. With this model, made a successful transition to the CJ becoming the progenitor of the sport-utility that is so popular today.

the war, the German army had its Jeep, a light, versatile based on Volkswagen components and in the giant VW plant in what Wolfsburg, Germany. The little vehicle came in two versions, the Kubelwagen (bucket car) and the four-wheel-drive Schwimmwagen. The Schwimmwagen was with a retractable propeller off the end of the crankshaft.

The Kubelwagen’s air-cooled engine it particularly effective in German Erwin Rommel’s Afrika campaign in the North African Air cooling was also an advantage on the Russian front.

When the war the Volkswagen factory, unlike its counterpart, stopped building its reconnaissance vehicles and turned to VW cars. The plant was under the of the British after the war and, their help and encouragement, the workforce slowly began cars in quantity. The VW Beetle became the world’s dominant car.

Although the German army approached Volkswagen about a military vehicle, the plant was so filling the demand for its ubiquitous and Transporter vans and trucks its general manager, Heinrich Nordhoff, a pragmatic engineer, little interest. When VW was approached by the army in the late however, it agreed to develop a vehicle for military use.

The was the Type 181, an updated of the Kubelwagen, and based onVW and Transporter components. It carried the military paraphernalia such as shovels and rifle mounts, and it was successful, being used for years by the German army and the forces of several other

With the military success of the 181 established, Volkswagen decided to a civilian version aimed at utilities, construction companies, and the like. It was marketed as the Type 181 in as the Thing in Canada and the United and as the Safari in Mexico. Production in 1969 and was carried out in Germany it was moved to Mexico in 1973, the it went on sale in North

The Thing, like the Kubelwagen, was a four-door open phaeton side curtains to provide protection. Its air-cooled, flat-four engine was in the rear, and cooling air for the entered through louvres the rear fenders. Like the the Thing had a platform frame, overdrive transmission and four-wheel-independent, bar suspension.

Volkswagen Kubelwagen

Styling, if one could call it was strictly utilitarian — a box-like shape with a hood, a fold-down windshield and doors. The spare tire and tank pretty well the space under the flat so luggage had to be carried inside.

The rode on a 2,400-millimetre wheelbase, the as the standard Beetle. At 3,780 mm in it was 305mm shorter than the Beetle. To accommodate the possibility of off-road use — it had two-wheel only and no locking differential— the ground clearance of 279 mm was 130 mm higher the Beetle’s. It weighed just than 862 kilograms.

Performance was but adequate. Road Track (10/’73) tested the Thing, that its 1.6-litre, 46-horsepower could accelerate it to 96 kilo-metres an in 23.2 seconds and push it to a top of 118 km/h.

The Thing was not really a serious despite the fact that marketed it as a competitor to the Land Jeep and Toyota Land It was a fun-to-drive little vehicle limited boonie-bashing capability. of it as a kind of a dune buggy doors.

Volkswagen stopped the Thing in 1980. Although figures are hazy, there probably at least 100,000 during its 12-year run.

The may be gone, but it is not completely forgotten. A modernized version of the Thing-like is being produced by Intermeccanica in Vancouver. It is powered by a Volkswagen flat-four, and it’s quite in the Japanese market.

Volkswagen Kubelwagen
Volkswagen Kubelwagen
Volkswagen Kubelwagen
Volkswagen Kubelwagen

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