Malcolm Bobbitt is a freelance writer who mainly chooses to write about automotive subjects. With several books to his credit he also contributes to a number of magazines. An avid motoring enthusiast, Malcolm owns two classic British-built Citroens, a Traction Avant and an early DS, as well as a Fiat 500c Topolino. Living in Cumbria on the edge of the Lake District, the author's other interests include walking, travel, industrial and transport archaeology, classical music, fine wines and collecting motoring books.
This is the story of VW's timeless classic, the Type 2 Transporter, universally known as the ”Bus”. It is sixty years since the idea of VW‘s Transporter was conceived by Dutchman Ben Pon after seeing motorized trollies conveying components around the British-managed Wolfsburg factory in the mid-1940s. With blueprints complete by November 1948, the “Bulli” as it was known in Germany went into production a year later. The 100,000th Transporter was built in October 1954, the millionth in 1961 and the 3 millionth in 1971, the total number of vehicles exceeding 6.5 million. The Transporter changed little in concept throughout decades of production, and remained in production in Brazil until very recently, nearly six decades after its postwar German debut.
Researched in incredible detail, this book explores the story of the VW bus, from early origins through to the present day. This entirely new edition includes details of many of the different camper conversions, and examines the social history and the T2's evolution. Including full specifications, production figures and buying advice, this totally reworked classic is an interesting, highly informative read and a must for any VW enthusiast.
The author chose the Topolino as the starting point as the car fulfils all the criteria and it was the first Fiat built in the late 1930s to satisfy the Italian public's new-found desire for mobilisation. The old conventions of car production were turned upside down with the arrival of the 600 which revolutionised car production techniques and maximised on passenger space and performance at minimal cost. These principals continued via a succession of models which include the 500, 850, 126, 127 through to more recent models like the Cinquecento and Seicento.
Running in parallel with these 'cheeky' Fiats, this book covers a range of slightly larger cars that were built in huge numbers. Though rather staid in appearance, the 1950s Millecento was family transport for millions of Italians covering three decades, four when the Indian-built cars are included. Similarly the 128, Panda and Uno were 'the' Italian small cars of the '70s, '80s and '90s. Nuova Panda carries the banner to the present day.
Today, Fiat's superbly stylish 124 Spider is accepted internationally as a desirable classic car and its stablemate, the elegant 124 CoupÈ, is quickly gaining similar acceptance. That this recognition is deserved cannot be disputed, for both cars have all the right ingredients for lasting fame: original style, original engineering and real driver-pleasing performance, together with the one essential quality that makes a real 'classic car' - deep-seated individual character.In production from 1966 to 1985, the Pininfarina-designed 124 Spider was a huge export success for Fiat with over 170,000 examples being sold in the USA alone, whilst the 124 CoupÈ, styled by Boano, also enjoyed sales success throughout the world between 1967 and 1975. Both cars used Fiat's willing and technically advanced twin-cam engine in sizes ranging from 1400 to 2000cc. Towards the end of production the Spider even enjoyed supercharged performance in its Volumex form.Not to be forgotten is the 124 Spider's important rÙle in international rallying during the 1970s, when the cars created and homologated by Abarth were very successful and always newsworthy. Over 1000 examples of the legendary Fiat-Abarth 124 Spider were built and today, deservedly, these traditionally black-bonneted/hooded cars enjoy great status amongst serious collectors.Here, from an enthusiast author, is the complete history of these important cars, including motorsport. Also within these covers the enthusiast will find expert advice on which model to choose, restoration, clubs, specialists and what it's like to live with a Fiat 124 Spider or CoupÈ.