Published on Sep 4, 2012
Carjam Car Radio Show -- RTE Radio 1 -- A Car Show About People
Like its contemporaries, the Mini, the Citroën 2CV, and the Fiat 500, the Type 1 has long outlasted predictions of its lifespan. It has been regarded as something of a "cult" car since its 1960s association with the hippie movement and surf culture; and the obvious attributes of its unique and quirky design. (For example, the Beetle could float on water thanks to its sealed floor pans and overall tight construction, as shown in the 1972 Volkswagen commercial).
In the United States, Volkswagen enthusiasts frequent large Volkswagen-themed car shows, especially in the summer months. Many of these shows feature camping, a car show called a "show 'n' shine", drag racing, parts swap meet, raffles, burnout contests, and other events. Die-hard and loyal "VW-heads" or "Dubbers" attend these shows regularly, often traveling 500 miles (800 km) or more (even abroad) to attend their favorite event.
Much like their Type 2 counterparts, Beetles were psychedelically painted and considered an ancestor of art cars. One of the logos used by the Houston Art Car Klub incorporated a Beetle with a cowboy hat. Texas artist Bob "Daddy-O" Wade transformed a Beetle into a New Orleans Saints helmet. Currently, there are a wide array of clubs that are concerned with the Beetle. The fans are quite diverse. Looks include the resto-look, Cal Look, German-look, resto-Cal Look, buggies, Baja Bugs, old school, Disney's Herbie the Love Bug replicas, ratlook, etc. Part of their cult status is attributed to being one of a few cars with an air-cooled, horizontally opposed engine design, and the consequent ease of repair and modification, as opposed to the more conventional and technically complex watercooled engine design. The original flat-four boxer design had fewer than 200 moving parts.
The Type has made numerous appearances in Hollywood films, most notably (Disney's) The Love Bug comedy series from 1968 to 2005, starring as "Herbie", a pearl-white, fabric-sunroofed 1963 Beetle—racing number 53. In the plot of the 1973 Woody Allen film Sleeper, Allen's character was able to instantly start a Beetle which lay hidden and unused in a cave for 200 years, leading to the punchline "Wow, they really built these things, didn't they?". The race cars in the 1975 action-comedy film Death Race 2000 were actually Type 1s with outlandish customized bodies. In the 1984 series The Transformers, key Autobot character Bumblebee transformed into a Beetle, as well fellow Autobot Glyph and the Decepticon Bugbite. In Cars (2006), every bug or insect is represented by a Type 1.
On November 22, 2010, on the final episode of the Oprah's Favorite Things special, Oprah Winfrey and VW announced that every member of Winfrey's audience that day would receive one of the Beetles upon its release in 2011. VW staff gave the audience their special keys to the car. This was followed by a teaser commercial during Super Bowl XLV in February 2011.
To celebrate the global reveal, VW partnered with MTV, to make a debut on three continents on April 18. The reveal began in Shanghai, China with a MTV Sound System celebration hosted by MTV VJs, followed by MTV World Stage events in Berlin and New York City.
The first special edition of the 2012 Beetle is the Black Turbo launch edition. It will be limited to 600 cars on the U.S. market and will be the first car available through Volkswagen's new Vehicle Pre-Order program.
A convertible version of the hatchback will be available late 2012 or early 2013 for the 2013 model year. The convertible version will be available with both the gasoline and diesel engines. Transmission will be a five- and six-speed manual and the fast-shifting six-speed DSG automatic. Volkswagen plans to launch three special editions to celebrate the new chop top variant. "Fifties", "Sixties", and "Seventies" special editions will feature special period accurate colors, wheels, and interior options. These "authentic reproductions", as Volkswagen calls them, will be sold in Europe this summer and the U.S. in the autumn of 2012.
The Fender Beetle special edition will feature Fender's nine-speaker, 400 watt sound system, specifically designed for the Beetle and other Volkswagens. Painted in a deep black pearl and chrome accents on the side skirt, bumper, wheels, and mirrors with Fender badges on each side and on the back for the outside. With black cloth seats with alternating stitching colors and a sunburst colored dashboard styled like Fender's iconic Stratocaster on the inside, this will be two icons coming together as one.
Standard YouTube License