Air-cooled VW History

VW Type 2 References in popular culture

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  • Men at Work's 1982 hit "Down Under" refers to "Traveling in a fried-out Kombi, On a hippie trail, head full of zombie." The official video features a Kombi at the start.
  • C. W. McCall's hit "Convoy" the truckers are join by "eleven long-haired friends of Jesus in a chartreuse microbus" who are positioned behind a "suicide jockey" for good luck.
  • Red Simpson's hit "I'm a Truck" refers to a "Volkswagen bus full of hippies".
  • Before it spawned the movie of the same name (see below), Arlo Guthrie's song "Alice's Restaurant" was released in 1967. It mentioned a "red VW Microbus" filled with "shovels, rakes, and implements of destruction."
  • Bruce Springsteen's song "The Angel," from his 1973 album Greetings From Asbury Park, N.J., mentions "Volkswagen vans with full running boards driving great anchors."
  • Dean Friedman's Ariel mentions "my VW Van".
  • Sublime's cover of the Grateful Dead's "Scarlet Begonias" from 40 oz. to Freedom mentions that the lead singer drives a microbus.
  • The first song on Fairport Convention's 2007 Sense of Occasion album, entitled "Turning the Wheel", described the history and nostalgia surrounding an 1960s Volkswagen campervan. Several pictures of the band posed in or around a blue Volkswagen Type 2 were included in the CD booklet.
  • In Blink 182's "First Date" music video, Mark Hoppus' character, Spaulding, lives in his VW bus and has many adventures with his friends Boomer - Tom DeLonge and Travis - Travis Barker.
  • Jewel lived in a Kombi before she was famous.
  • Brazilian band Raimundos' song "Pitando no Kombão" talks about a group of friends who usually band together in a VW van to have a good time, smoking marijuana, playing guitar and rolling around the town.
  • "Magic Bus" by The Who was written about a type 2 VW bus.
  • "Boogie de la Combi" By Charly Montana (Mexican punk rock) was written about a regular VW Kombi that is used for public transportation in Mexico City and it's Adventures.
  • Bob Dylan's 1963 album 'The Freewheelin'" has a blue VW bus on the cover


The VW Bus was a regular player in many 1960s and 1970s movies, and afterwards as an icon for the counterculture era:

  • A first-generation VW bus plays a supporting role in the 1967 film Wait Until Dark starring Audrey Hepburn and Alan Arkin.
  • Arlo Guthrie's 1969 film Alice's Restaurant has numerous long sequences involving his red 1964 VW camper bus.
  • In the 2006 Pixar movie Cars, the hippie van Fillmore(voiced by George Carlin) is a VW Type 2.
  • Steve Jobs, the CEO and founder of Pixar, sold his VW Type 2 to finance what would become Apple Computer.[1]
  • The second Dirty Harry film, Magnum Force, a Bus was t-boned in the film (Eastwood is seen driving a 1972 Ford Galaxie 500 - the car is later blown up by the film's end).
  • The 1972 comedy film What's Up, Doc? featured a first generation Bus which is rammed several times.
  • In the movie Ronin there is a military green Type 2 transporting the characters around.
  • Kevin Costner (Ray Kinsella) drives cross country in a VW Bus to kidnap James Earl Jones (Terence Mann) in Field of Dreams
  • The movie Little Miss Sunshine centers around a family road trip from New Mexico to California in a yellow second-generation Bus.
  • In the movie Back to the Future there is a blue VW Bus used by Libyan terrorist to chase the professor and his modified DeLorean / time machine.
  • Jeff Spicoli and his stoner friends were "hot boxing" in an orange VW bus in Fast Times at Ridgemont High.
  • The 1992 Robert Redford film "Sneakers" features a split screen Microbus in the opening sequence involving the two computer whizz kids. Perhaps a reference to Stephen Jobs?
  • Actor Christopher Walken's character drove a Type 2 Bus in 2005's "Around the Bend".


  • Type 2s have been included in both "Pimp My Ride US" (Ryan's '58 Bus in Series 2) and "Pimp My Ride UK" (Zoë's '67 Camper and Jono's Bay Window Pick up in Series 2).
  • In the eighth series of Top Gear, Richard Hammond converted a Volkswagen Type 2 T3 to be amphibious, adding modifications to enable it to float. However, Hammond's experiment with the VW Type 2 failed, and the craft sank. At the second attempt in Series 10 Hammond's flaoting camper reappeared and again failed as both it and James May's Triumph Herald yacht conversion were beaten by Clackson's Nissan pick-up which sported a huge outboard motor and did make it across the English channel to France.
  • In the Doctor Who episode, Gridlock, thousands of Type 2-like hovering vans are seen trapped on a Motorway, some having been in the constant traffic jam, upwards of 20 years.
  • A Type 2 made its appearance in one of Futurama's episode "Bendin' in the Wind" and was a key part of the episode and was referred to as "Free spirited German engineering".
  • An Episode of "Law & Order," entitled "Ramparts" (Episode Number: 192, Season Num: 9), involves a VW Bus being dredged from the Hudson River near the George Washington Bridge with the 30-year old remains of a corpse inside.
  • A blue Type 2, T3 appeared in an episode of Sliders as the main characters' getaway vehicle.
  • A Type 2 bus is seen in Lost season 3. It is found on the island by Hurley & Vincent the dog. Instead of the large VW sign on the front, it holds the Dharma Initiative logo in its place. The bus is two tone, being blue and white in colour. It is also very rusty and has the rotting body of the original driver, Roger, inside.
  • In some episodes of That 70's Show, Kelso owns a T2 bus built as a making out place.
  • A black 1966 Double cab, the personal vehicle of presenter Jamie Hyneman, featured in many of the Series 2 of the Discovery Channel Mythbusters TV show.
  • In Power Rangers Ninja Storm, Tori can be seen driving a two tone blue/white VW Bus in several episodes of the series. The VW emblem on the front was removed, possibly due to copyright issues.
  • A type 2 bus is driven by Rain Robinson in the Star Trek: Voyager episode Future's end Part 1 and 2.
  • In the opening of Mystery Science Theatre 3000 television show , Pearl is seen driving a VW bus through outerspace.
  • The Australian television series "Ask the Leyland Brothers" featured baywindow VW Campers in the first series. These were not WESTFALIA conversions but were manufactured by Volkswagen Australia's locally appointed conversion company and were "official" VW products.
  • The 2008 series of Big Brother Australia features a stationary type 2 in the backyard as a "chill out" zone. Currently, housemate Nobbi is banished from entering the house and now has to make the van his new home.

Video games

  • Tony Hawk Pro Skater level San Francisco has a green Microbus driving the streets.
  • The Type 2 is an unlockable car in the game Midtown Madness 2.
  • The Type 2 is an unlockable car in the game GTi Racing, and it is modifiable, with a range of things such as new body parts and turbochargers.
  • Vehicles known as Campers in the video game Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas are based on the Type 2. The character Truth, a hippie, has a Camper painted in a hippy-style called "The Mothership".
  • A Type 2-like van is also driveable in the video game San Francisco Rush.
  • Two games of the Driver video game series featured vehicles based on the Type 2: Driver 2 with yellow realistic vans, and Driv3r with a vehicle realistically modeled painted hippie-style which is an unlockable car.
  • The "Hippy Van" can be found on the streets of Miami in Scarface: The World is Yours.
  • In the Game "TG Dare Devil", T1 Pickups can be seen driving around.
  • This van and its pickup truck version are playable vehicles in GTI Racer.
  • This van flew to Mars in LucasArts Zak McCracken and the Alien Mindbenders.
  • A Van based Type 2 is often found at Fringe community in the video game City Life


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