By: IOL Motoring Staff
Although it was the original split-screen T1 Kombi that became synonymous with the Flower Power craze, the 1967 T2 was close enough in spirit and looks to continue the hippie spirit in style.
And that's exactly what it's done in Brazil until now. Last week it was announced that the T2 Kombi production will be discontinued in Brazil - over three decades after it bit the dust in Germany.
To mark the classic Kombi's demise in style, rather than just brush it under the carpet, Volkswagen has now whipped the covers off the Kombi Last Edition of which just 600 will be produced.
MAKE LOVE, NOT WAR
The Last Edition embraces its history with a two-tone white and blue exterior paint job, whitewall tyres, white wheel caps and tinted rear windows.
The nostalgia continues inside the nine-seater cabin where its peace-loving customers will enjoy a bespoke two-tone vinyl upholstery and blue fabric curtains for the side and rear windows to ensure that this passion wagon lives up to its population-boosting reputation.
There is a modern twist up front, where music lovers will appreciate the fitment of an MP3 sound system that has aux and USB ports. Apart from this and the modern instrument cluster, the Kombi's dashboard still resembles that of the 1967 model and as a final garnish, it houses a numbered identification plaque for the Last Edition.
Mechanically, the 'latest' T2 models have shifted from air-cooled engines to a water-cooled unit, hence the large grille that they’ve smacked onto the front end. The 1.4-litre EA111 motor fitted to the Last Edition produces just 57kW, still a useful increase from the original air-cooled engine's 35kW.
WHY MUST IT DIE?
New safety legislation, coming into effect next year, forces all Brazilian vehicles to roll off the production line with front airbags and ABS brakes. Engineering the Kombi for the modern safety age would simply not be worth the costs involved.
Still, the Brazilian-spec Kombi is one of the longest-produced models in automotive history and it even makes SA's Citi Golf/Golf I (1987 to 2009) seem short-lived.
Of course, the classic Kombis cultivated a significant enough presence in South Africa too. Do you have a Kombi story to tell?
Dare we ask, have you ever 'done it' in a Kombi?