TG drives the Kombi in Brazil
It's one of TG magazine's greatest ever adventures: a white-knuckle ride around the favelas in a new, 50s-style Kombi van
Posted: 11 Oct 2013
Amazingly, the Kombi has been in continuous production in VW's São Bernardo do Campo factory since 1957, which is a world record. Stranger still, sales in Brazil last year rose by four per cent, to around 30,000 units per year, and this despite a non-bargain showroom price equivalent to about £17,000, all in. In total, more than 1.5m VW Kombis have been made since '57, most of which still seem to be running. Originally conceived by a Dutch businessman called Ben Pon (he'd seen Volkwagen's post-war Plattenwagen shuttling about Wolfsburg and ran the idea of a Beetle-based utility vehicle past the British armed forces that had taken charge), the Type 2 Kombi's longevity, particularly in Brazil, is down to two factors: it remains almost comically simple in design, and there's no cheaper way of hauling a tonne of covered cargo.