- Most successful camper in its class
- Production heading for new record in 2018
- Dr Eckhard Scholz: “We could hardly write this story of success any better!”
Hannover, 25 May 2018 – Fascinating, fun to drive and providing freedom on four wheels: the California from Volkswagen Commercial Vehicles. As it achieves a new production milestone, the most successful mobile home in its class is now again setting new benchmarks: the 100,000th California has just been produced at the Hannover-Limmer site and with its “dream of a holiday on four wheels” Volkswagen Commercial Vehicles is also heading for a new production record this year. Only last year the brand achieved a new record with 15,155 California vehicles built (+18 per cent).
The milestone 100,000th vehicle that has now been produced in Limmer is a California Ocean (2.0 TSI, 150 kW) with 4MOTION, 7-speed DSG, two-tone Candy White/Starlight Blue Metallic paintwork with matching dark blue pop-up roof sides and awning, cycle rack, navigation system, kitchen units, wood-look flooring and much more.
Dr Eckhard Scholz, Chairman of the Brand Board of Management of Volkswagen Commercial Vehicles said at the celebratory event: “We could hardly write or continue this story of a legend’s success in any better way: because 100,000 vehicles also mean 100,000 customers living their dream of independence, travel and enjoyment with the California. The California is justifiably an icon among camping and leisure vehicles, the most popular and best-selling mobile home of its kind.”
Addressing the workforce, Scholz said: “This success is first and foremost your success. For with your passion and expertise you not only create automotive value ‘Made in Hannover’ every day, but each of you has also contributed and continues to contribute to the fact that this vehicle achieved cult status for multiple generations and will remain in the future too a mobile home with built-in holiday joy.”
Bertina Murkovic, Chair of the Works Council, said: “Hannover has been, and remains, the home of the Bulli. And that includes the California, a very special and unique vehicle that you, dear colleagues, build using your skill and know-how, thus making you too a part of this story of success. The decision to make the California in Limmer has been proven to be right. From initially 60 employees here on the Limmer site, there is now a workforce of around 300. My thanks therefore go to the entire team, including from the main Hannover site, who with their great commitment have together made the ‘Cali’ a cult vehicle!”
Volker Eissele, Head of Customized Solution at Volkswagen Commercial Vehicles added: “We are continually enhancing our best seller, fine-tuning its design and perfecting its engineering. As a result, the California offers through its diverse array of practical functions unlimited scope for travelling and unparalleled flexibility in everyday life.”
This home on four wheels began its story of success 30 years ago. The California was developed jointly with ‘Westfalia’. It was based on the third generation of the Transporter and initially produced in Rheda-Wiedenbrück. Since 2004, the California has been developed and made by Volkswagen Commercial Vehicles solely at the Hannover-Limmer plant. The California production facility covers approximately 13,000 square metres.
A work force of around 300 is employed there, operating in three shifts. The base vehicles come to Limmer on trucks from the main Hannover-Stöcken plant. The bodies have been prepared for the next stage of production and thus have the necessary cut-out for the pop-up roof. Working by hand, experts then fit out the California to customer specifications. Just recently, for being the most popular compact camper van, the California was awarded the title “Mobile Home of the Year 2018”. Over the 30 years since the California was launched, more than 160,000 units have been produced in total, 100,000 of them in Hannover- Limmer.
About the Volkswagen Commercial Vehicles brand:
“All around the globe we offer the best transport solutions for our customers.” As a stand-alone brand within the Volkswagen Group, Volkswagen Commercial Vehicles is responsible globally for the development, construction and sales of light commercial vehicles, producing the Transporter, Caddy, Crafter and Amarok ranges. In consultation with its customers, Volkswagen Commercial Vehicles draws up appropriate vehicle concepts, telematics and logistics solutions for the sparing use of resources at the highest possible level of efficiency. In 2017, the brand sold around 498,000 light commercial vehicles, which were produced at its sites in Hanover (D), Poznań (PL), Września (PL) and Pacheco (ARG). Globally, Volkswagen Commercial Vehicles employs over 21,000 people, including around 14,000 at the Hannover site.
LARGE GATHERING OF HISTORIC VW BUSES NEAR AMSTERDAM:
“BARNDOOR GATHERING 2018” CELEBRATES THE EARLY T1
- On May 19 and 20, the Netherlands will be home to T1 buses produced between 1950 and 1955
- Volkswagen Commercial Vehicles will bring the oldest “barn door” registered in Germany
Hannover, May 16, 2018: This weekend the Netherlands will become the home of the T1, as Amersfoort – located just outside Amsterdam – is the venue for this year’s European “Barndoor Gathering”, a meet for early VW Bulli buses built from 1950 to 1955. Nowhere in the Netherlands is more appropriate for this T1 festival than Amersfoort: back in the middle of the last century, Ben Pon – a legendary VW bus visionary and Volkswagen importer – used the rail freight terminal of this small city as a central hub for the delivery of Volkswagen Beetles and Transporters from Germany.
The engine compartment doors of the first Volkswagen buses looked massive, like a barn door. This was the origin of the nickname “barn door” in the VW “Bulli” scene and represents the majority of T1 buses produced at Volkswagen’s Wolfsburg plant until 1955. In early 1955, the engine cover was reduced in size when a boot lid was introduced, ended the “barn door” era. Then, in 1956, T1 production began in the new plant in Hannover. Today, the “barn door” T1 is one of the most valuable vintage VW Bullis. Around 100 of them will be on display at the site of the old freight yard in Amersfoort.
Also making their appearance at the “Barndoor Gathering” in the Netherlands, the second such event since the first in 2014 – are Volkswagen Nutzfahrzeuge Oldtimer, the classic car specialists from Hannover. They will bring “Sofie” with them – the oldest registered VW bus in Germany. The blue T1 was manufactured in August 1950 – just five months after the production launch of the Transporter.
And it’s not only buses which are heading to Amersfoort. Also welcome are all Beetle, Karmann Ghia, Type 3 and many other vehicles – essentially the whole air-cooled family of Volkswagen vehicles.