1935 Büssing-NAG 375T: Omnibuses
(intercity coaches) were streamlined - the Autobahn programme
required a new type of bodywork with low drag co-efficient, allowing for
higher speeds and modest fuel consumption.
Volkswagen Bus to be revived as an electric vehicle - cancelled in 2013, the classic Volkswagen Camper may find a new lease on life as an eco-friendly EV. The iconic “hippie wagon” may soon see a very apropos resurrection from the dead. Speaking at the New York Auto Show, Volkswagen board member Dr Heinz-Jakob Neusser announced that the German auto company was working on a brand new camper concept - one that would run on batteries, rather than petrol, powering an electric motor driving the front wheels. Dr Neusser said that the new car would maintain 3 iconic design principles of the original Type 2 microbus, first introduced in Germany in 1950. “First the wide, solid, D-Pillar, second the boxy design of the center section; and, third, the front end must have a very short overhang.” In 2011, the company took a stab at an electric concept it called the Bulli, clearly inspired by the Type 2, but closer to a small van, with 4 hinged doors and 1 bench seat in the front and another in the rear that could be folded flat to make a sort of bed. The Camper, in comparison, contains a small mobile home with optional kitchen equipment and detachable canvas tents and awnings; seats that could be folded out into beds; a folding table, and a small refrigeration unit. Production on all VW Type 2 units, incl. the Camper, ceased in 2013. Production had been outsourced to Brazil after safety regulations introduced in the 70s in Germany meant that it could no longer be made there. In 2012, Brazil introduced legislation that went into effect on Jan 1, 2014, dictating that all cars made in the country must have ABS and airbags on both driver and passenger sides. VW decided that, rather than make a completely new vehicle, it was more cost effective to simply say goodbye to the Type 2 after 63 years of production. However, Dr Neusser now said that if the cost of production on the new electric Camper was feasible, the car could make it to market. The VW team continues to work on the concept.
- Life is short. Keep in touch with your parents (he was in the UK to visit his mother in the hospice).
- Don’t leave money in the bank, invest it in property.
- Be prepared for an economic crash. It’s coming sooner than you think (2 years, he reckons)
- Never lose sight of reality. People are too absorbed in the virtual world and forget what’s happening around them (he caught me tumbling/tumblring on the bus).
- Having kids is a reality check, you have to be ready for them (I told him I got married last month and am looking forward to starting a new life with my husband).
- Don’t have kids till you are absolutely sure about your marriage. It’s the least you can do for your future children (he has 8-year-old twins and said he couldn’t imagine doing it without his wife).
- No one can escape the hardships of life. Just because things are going well for you now doesn’t make you invincible. You have a better chance of dealing with troubles if you are mentally prepared for them. It helps to be aware of things around you (again, don’t have your nose in your phone).
- Don’t take sleeping pills. You most probably have a zinc or magnesium deficiency so look to supplement them in your diet. Consult a doctor first.
- Get good food and get proper sleep, go for a run when you can.
- Don’t get addicted to coffee. It’s not good for the heart. You don’t need more than a certain amount of coffee to get through your day - always remember that.
I don’t usually pay attention to the words of middle-aged strangers on the bus/train/flight. People love to give me advice for some reason. But there was a tone of sincerity in his voice and I was grateful for his time. Hope this gets you thinking as well. - Zeba