VW Kombi could be saved | Industry – Car News Dec 2013
16:36 Wednesday 18 Dec 2013
Fans of the classic VW camper rejoice! VW’s venerable old bus may not be dead after all.
Cast your mind back to September last year when we brought you news that the VW Kombi, which has been in production in Brazil since 1976, is finally being killed off, 63 years after it was originally introduced in Europe.
From the beginning of next year, Brazilian legislation will force all new cars to have both ABS and driver and passenger airbags. VW decided that these could not be fitted to the Kombi, announcing its decision to pull the model and launching a Final Edition model to say farewell in the process.
Now, however, it seems that the Kombi may not be destined for the scrapheap after all. Brazil’s finance minister Guido Mantega is reportedly looking at an exception for the VW bus, based on the fact that the model’s ancient design does not allow room for the new technologies.
Mantega has already provoked criticism in Brazil for suggesting that the new safety standards could be postponed over concerns about inflated car prices.
The VW Kombi is still very popular in Brazil, with 26,000 units sold in the country every year. Its popularity is largely down to its low price, practicality and reliability, which has made it a favourite among cash-strapped businesses.
Of course, even if the Brazilian government does make an exception for the Kombi, it remains to be seen whether VW will continue production of the model.