In 1957, Volkswagen began production of the Type 1 Kombi van in Brazil, and in 1995 began production of the Type 2 to meet increasing safety standards. Alas, the VW Type 2 Kombi has reached the end of the line, the very last production model is being shipped from Brazil to Hannover, Germany, where it will see out its days as a museum piece.
This last VW Kombi bus isa small but important part of Volkswagen’s history. While I’d never make the claim that the Volkswagen Type 2 bus is a “green” car (even though it can run on ethanol), I think it’s fair to say that its simple and rugged design have proven more than effective for the past 50+ years, just like the Mexican-built Beetle that only just went out of production. You just don’t get the same kind of utility out of today’s cars, and I can’t imagine any automaker building a current model car for decade upon decade. Those days, I hope, are over.
The Kombi bus has many fans in Brazil though, and Volkswagen had to double the offering of a “last edition” model from 600 to 1,200 units, despite a price tag of over $35,000. Production of the Kombi van in Brazil has surpassed 1.5 million units, making it among the most popular vehicles in this fast-growing country.
Those of you hoping to buy a modern take on a classic design, possibly converting it into a contemporary Westfalia camper, have unfortunately missed your chance With the retirement of the Brazilian Kombi, there are no more old Volkswagens in production, at least on this side of the planet, marking the end of an era that has lasted a very long time.