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Kombis in the News

Discussion in 'Kombi Spotting' started by Van Housing, Mar 27, 2010.

  1. Van Housing

    Van Housing Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    10,417
    Location:
    Yarraville Vic
    An occasional series.
     
  2. Van Housing

    Van Housing Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    10,417
    Location:
    Yarraville Vic
    Affair of the heart

    [​IMG]

    "ROLAND Smeekes and his Kombi go a long way back -- they were both born in 1962.
    And the Hobart draftsman expects to soon get a "birth certificate" from Germany for his red and white Kombi.

    "I was born in December 1962 and the car was manufactured in the same month, so I have a sentimental attachment to it," he said.

    The iconic Volkswagen people mover has its 60th anniversary this year and the car company is celebrating, as are Kombi owners worldwide.

    Mr Smeekes' love of the idiosyncratic hippie van started when he was one of five children being crammed into one.

    "Mum and Dad probably had 10 Kombis, so to have a Kombi brings back memories," he said.

    As a six-year-old, his loyalty was sorely tested.

    "I got hit by one, it broke both my legs and I spent nine months in hospital and had to learn

    to walk again," he said.

    After 30 years, Mr Smeekes renewed the acquaintance last year.

    "I just love their simplicity and character and that they are able to do their job so well," he said.

    Luckily, his wife Rachel not only shared his enthusiasm but pragmatically turned it into a thriving business, R&R Kombi Hire.

    "We hire it out for weddings and formals and special tours," Mr Smeekes said.

    "I'm always the driver, I don't like other people driving it."

    He would dearly love to buy another Kombi but makes do with one.

    And it's not just any old Kombi. His split-screen model is a favourite of enthusiasts and collectors, with some worth up to $50,000 in top condition."

    from the Hobart Mercury:
    http://www.themercury.com.au/article/2010/03/19/134931_tasmania-news.html
     
  3. Van Housing

    Van Housing Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    10,417
    Location:
    Yarraville Vic
  4. 68BUS

    68BUS Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    4,434
    Location:
    Brisbane
    And it's not just any old Kombi. His split-screen model is a favourite of enthusiasts and collectors, with some worth up to $50,000 in top condition."

    Imagine how the reporter would react if they saw the price of some of the Samba's!
     
  5. Van Housing

    Van Housing Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    10,417
    Location:
    Yarraville Vic
    Backpackers Campervans Rental Now Available In Europe

    "ORIGIN rents small Volkswagen vans fully equipped (2010 model) for 2/3 person with colorful and unique designs. ORIGIN revives the mythic VW Kombi!

    ...
    According to Céline Fauvarque from Origin Campervans, the idea came from Australia and New Zealand were the concept is enjoying great success with tourists wanting to get the most of the stunning nature and life style of these countries… “After having lived “Down Under” for a few years, we wanted to offer this concept in France to allow visitors to discover Europe outside the beaten tracks without breaking the budget.” "

    http://www.freepressindex.com/news-backpackers-campervans-rental-now-available-in-europe-27607.html
     
  6. Van Housing

    Van Housing Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    10,417
    Location:
    Yarraville Vic
  7. Van Housing

    Van Housing Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    10,417
    Location:
    Yarraville Vic
    Curbside Classic: 1960 VW Bus (Type 2) Westfalia

    "Just like it’s usually impossible to identify the absolute source of a new design direction in cars, so it is with cultural trends. But Ken Kesey was something akin to, well, the VW bus. Like the Transporter borrowed heavily from the Beetle, but re-packaged its donor’s mechanicals into a creative and influential new shape, so Kesey borrowed from the Beat era of the fifties and transformed its fading intellectual energy into something new and highly influential. Kesey himself said: “I was too young to be a Beat, and too old to be a hippie”. Perhaps the VW bus could say it was too old to be a Beetle but too young to be a minivan."

    [​IMG]

    From The Truth About Cars (US) - with 9 accompanying images:
    http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/curbside-classic-1960-vw-bus-type-2-westfalia/
     
  8. Van Housing

    Van Housing Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    10,417
    Location:
    Yarraville Vic
    Conversations with Richard Fidler (ABC Brisbane)

    "Annette Henderson and her husband prepared carefully for their trip across the Sahara - but not carefully enough.


    Former anthropologist now author Annette Henderson made a return visit to Conversations.

    Back in the 70s, Annette and her husband Win decided to cross Africa in their Kombi van, and spent a year preparing for every contigency they could think of.

    As it turned out, nothing could really have prepared them for the disasters that befell them!

    Annette wrote about their experiences living and working in the jungle in her book Wild Spirit, and is busy working on the next manuscript about their Saharan adventure."

    from ABC local radio:
    http://www.abc.net.au/local/stories/2010/04/19/2876651.htm

    Audio can be downloaded (eg right-click) here:
    http://mpegmedia.abc.net.au/local/brisbane/conversations/201004/r551301_3262435.mp3
     
  9. Van Housing

    Van Housing Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    10,417
    Location:
    Yarraville Vic
    Chinese camper could replace Kombi

    "A Chinese campervan could become a spiritual successor to the legendary Volkswagen Kombi for Australian backpackers and the growing grey nomad clan.

    Like the Kombi, vehicle importer Ateco - which now imports the Chinese Great Wall Motors and Chery brands - hopes it will forge a niche by being competitively priced and well packaged for those looking to explore Australia.

    A single Great Wall Motors Motor Home will soon be imported to Australia for evaluation as a camper, where it could sell for as little as $50,000, undercutting more expensive rivals typically based on Toyotas, Fiats, Volkswagens or even Mercedes-Benzes.

    Whereas most campervans and motor homes arrive in Australia as the basic vehicle before being built up locally, the Great Wall Motor Home would leave the factory as a built up vehicle, complete with combined toilet/shower, kitchen and sleeping space for four.

    It can also take five people in its dual-cab cabin, allowing flexibility when travelling or away from home."

    continues, with pics:
    http://theage.drive.com.au/motor-news/chinese-camper-could-replace-kombi-20100423-ti1x.html

    [​IMG]
     
  10. Surfpig

    Surfpig Member

    Messages:
    440
    Location:
    newcastle, nsw
    wouldnt trust anything chinese built
     
  11. the invisible smith

    the invisible smith New Member

    Messages:
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    Location:
    Bonogin,Gold Coast
    There was an article on the news the other night about aussie school students over in Gallipoli. There teacher was wearing a Kombi tee shirt.....an orange late Bay.
     
  12. StevieVW

    StevieVW Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    3,474
    Location:
    Somerset, Tasmania
    Retail at $50,000 then as soon as you drive off the showroom they're worth 50c..... You'd be lucky to get 100,00km out of one I reacon too.
     
  13. trevendy

    trevendy Member

    Messages:
    86
    Location:
    Tamworth N.S.W
    A mitsubishi motor, nissan chassis , gotta be worth a look.... i can remember some nasty things being said about the jap stuff in the 70`s... lets wait n see ...
     
  14. Terrordales

    Terrordales Active Member

    Messages:
    4,681
    Location:
    Earth
    I wouldn't sneer at it just yet, a lot of sneering went on about "Jap Crap" in the 60's & early '70's & look what the majority of people are driving these days.
     
  15. bradster

    bradster New Member

    Messages:
    55
    Location:
    toowoomba
  16. Dingostrategy

    Dingostrategy Active Member

    Messages:
    4,322
    Location:
    SW Vic ++
    ...and Korean and French and Czech and Russian and, oh ok Russian cars suck, and you've heard what the UK and US say about Holdens. Not kind.

    I don't want one of these either, but because they're but ugly, not because they're not built well. The manufactuers aren't stupid and know quite well the Qantas syndrome: If your tray table does not stay up on a Chinese carrier, then any minute now the plane is bound to crash. If 25 Qantas planes have bits falling off them and the side blow out from dodgy cylinders, with hand on heart and saluting the union jack, we keep paying a premium to fly Qantas. Consequentially the build quality will be spot-on.

    That said, the poor old thing's been beaten with the ugly stick pretty badly indeed.
     
  17. Van Housing

    Van Housing Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    10,417
    Location:
    Yarraville Vic
    I'll be honest - I was laughing my head off when I saw the picture that accompanied the article. Not only does it have a nose like Cyrano de Bergerac, but it also looks bent in the middle. But if they meet the claimed price point (unlikely), they will no doubt find a market of sorts. But it will not be the new kombi, what a stupid suggestion.
     
  18. Dingostrategy

    Dingostrategy Active Member

    Messages:
    4,322
    Location:
    SW Vic ++
    Well yeah, there is the question of market.

    Try one of these http://www.activecampers.com.au/price-list.htm for 25k

    Attached to a second hand diesel 4wd for another 25k. Now you're talking.

    But still, why in the hell would you? Second hand T4 or 5 camper for maybe a bit more money, absolutely mind-boggling bay Kombi - all better options. For a grand a year insurance and rego, you're in front compared with depreciation of something else, even if it sits beside your sensible family car (which could be made in Korea or India or anywhere!).
     
  19. Dubman

    Dubman Well-Known Member

    The Great walls have one of the worst safety ratings for a ute in OZ, left over Rodeo Body with Nissan Bits and a block borrowed from Mitsubishi which is then modified very reminiscent of a Kia Carnival... made from leftovers, modified someone elses engine and completely F!@#ed it! best thing about them is the work I get from them.... :lol:

    Yep we all had opinions of Japanese Cars but one thing the Japanese do is they try and improve on designs and ideas... everything I have had dealings with from China I am sorry to say is an inferior copy. The Koreans are just starting to get it right. Maybe Great wall will be' Great' in 10years or so...but not for me :p
     
  20. Van Housing

    Van Housing Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    10,417
    Location:
    Yarraville Vic
    Hippie shakers

    " Uncomfortable, underpowered and frighteningly unsafe — so how did the classic VW Kombi become our latest must-have machine?

    [​IMG]
    Former Aussie MotoGP rider Daryl Beattie in a VW Kombi van at Kombi Rescue, Annangrove.


    Occasionally you are called on to test a vehicle that you expect will be dangerous or unpleasant, yet it turns out to be sprightly, nimble and a fulfilling, all-round wonderful driving experience.

    Alas, the 1957 VW Kombi was no such vehicle. It lacked power for a start. And braking ability. And grip. And refinement.

    The equipment level would make a Trappist question what he'd signed up for, while the aerodynamic profile could only be "unimproved on" by turning the vehicle sideways.

    The only two things this barn-door Kombi van (popularly known as the "splittie" for its twin-windscreen arrangement) didn't lack were seats and charm.

    For all its faults and privations, it's the most sought-after example of possibly the only commercial vehicle with a global fan club comprising young and old, rich and poor.

    Its position as the archetypal hippie wagon of the 1960s and 1970s perhaps explains why local prices are on the rise - and why English dealers make regular trips to Australia to grab and ship out every example they can separate from an owner. Demand in Europe is even higher.

    Sixty years ago the first example came off the German production line. That 1950 model - officially called the VW Type 2 - was a miracle of space efficiency: fillable with people and/or cargo from bumper to bumper and edge to edge, thanks to body sides that were slightly thicker than a Home Brand tin can.

    It was also a masterpiece of engineering efficiency. It borrowed its platform, suspension, engine, gearbox and almost everything else mechanical from the Beetle and other VW products, including the WWII Kubelwagen. The maker didn't feel it needed a bigger engine than the Beetle's 1100 flat four, despite the newcomer being called on to carry almost unbelievable weights.

    Within a few years there were panel-van versions, pick-up versions, sliding-door delivery vans, purpose-built ambulances, fire trucks and tipper trucks. And, of course, camper vans. But being Beetle-based, they took as much punishment as they were given. Which was usually a lot."

    continues:
    http://theage.drive.com.au/motor-news/hippie-shakers-20100513-v049.html
     

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