Skip to main content

Psychedelic Volkswagen Microbus from Woodstock returns for an encore

What’s more symbolic of the 1960s than a Volkswagen Microbus? How about a Volkswagen Microbus with a psychedelic paint scheme that appeared at the 1969 Woodstock festival? The VW “Light” bus became a star of Woodstock alongside The Who and Jimi Hendrix, and 50 years later it’s getting a new lease on life.

Volkswagen teamed up with Dr. Bob Hieronimus, the artist who painted the original Light bus, to create a replica. The resurrected Microbus will make its public debut at the Orange County Transporter Organization Winter Meet, a car show for VW Microbuses in Long Beach, California. The Light bus will then set off on a cross-country tour coinciding with Woodstock’s 50th anniversary.

Hieronimus painted the original Light bus, a 1963 model, in 1968 at the invitation of the vehicle’s owner. He wanted a “magic bus” to transport his band to Woodstock. The Light bus achieved fame when a photo of it was circulated by the Associated Press, ending up in newspapers and magazines around the country. The bus also appeared in the liner of the official Woodstock album.

With the 50th anniversary of Woodstock approaching, Hieronimus and Canadian documentarian John Wesley Chisholm set out to resurrect the Light bus. They originally tried to find and restore the original vehicle, but after a six-month search turned up nothing, they decided to build a replica, according to a Volkswagen press release. An identical Microbus was secured through a Kickstarter campaign, and Volkswagen subsequently pledged its support after learning of the project.

Officially called the Type 2, the Microbus went into production in 1950, and versions of it were still being built in Brazil through the end of 2013. In the 1960s, it vehicles served as cheap utilitarian transportation, as well as a canvas for artists like Hieronimus. The Microbus’ connection to that vibrant decade, and its distinctive looks, made it a pop culture icon. Original models made from 1950 to 1967, like the Light bus, are now valuable collectibles.

Volkswagen will soon bring back the Microbus, but with some modern upgrades. In 2022 it will launch a production version of the I.D. Buzz, a concept car with styling inspired by the original Microbus, but with an all-electric powertrain. Like the original Microbus, the I.D. Buzz will be sold in passenger and cargo-van configurations. It will be part of a family of new VW electric cars launching over the next few years.

Editors' Recommendations

Stephen Edelstein
Stephen is a freelance automotive journalist covering all things cars. He likes anything with four wheels, from classic cars…
Volkswagen is willing to share its electric car tech with BMW and others
audi porsche electric car platform will underpin range of models bev

The Volkswagen Group is putting aside auto industry competitiveness to help get more electric cars on the road. The company is in talks to share technology from its Audi and Porsche electric cars with other automakers, Automotive News reports.

VW is shopping around Premium Platform Electric, the basic underpinnings for Audi and Porsche electric cars that will start appearing in 2021. Sharing it will create economies of scale that will make building large numbers of luxury electric cars financially viable, Ulrich Widmann, head of development at Audi for the Premium Platform Electric project, said in an interview with Automotive News.

Read more
Volkswagen makes it easier for customers to talk to their car via their phone
volkswagen updates car net infotainment system for 2020 model year 1

Volkswagen made several changes to its lineup for the 2020 model year, but the big news is that most of its cars come with an updated infotainment system that offers a higher level of connectivity. The next generation of Car-Net is more feature-rich and quicker than the software it replaces, and owners stand to benefit because it's ultimately much more convenient.

Motorists can use the Remote Access feature to perform a variety of functions remotely. They can start or stop the engine, lock or unlock the doors, honk, flash the lights, find where their car is parked, and get a comprehensive vehicle health report by tapping their phone a few times. They can also sign up to receive push notifications; the car might inform them that its doors are unlocked, for example. The app is compatible with Android and Apple devices, and the service is free for the first five years of ownership.

Read more
For Volkswagen, the electric ID.3 is more than a new car. It’s a new chapter
2020 volkswagen id 3 electric car orders open first edition detailed vw official 1



Read more