Hemmings Sports & Exotic Car, June 2007 - US magazine Few vehicles are as iconic as Volkswagen's vans, and few automakers have inspired the level of fanatic loyalty as has Volkswagen. While thousands of books have been written about the Sedan and its variants, the utilitarian Microbus and its descendants have been largely ignored. An excellent new volume, VW Bus: Forty Years of Splitties, Bays & Wedges, by Richard Copping, has arisen to fill the void and educate a new generation of VW van fans. The title of the book refers to the popular nicknames of the three generations of these air-cooled rear-engine Volkswagens. 'Splitties', or split-windshield models, were the first Sedan spin-offs, conceived in 1948 to add another vehicle to the company lineup and built from 1950 to 1967. Despite their similar looks, the 1967-1979 'Bays' were completely redesigned and got their nickname from their curved, one-piece windshields. Volkswagen's final rear-engine vans, the angular 'Wedges' built from 1979 to 1990, were powered by both air- and water-cooled engines. UK-based author Richard Copping has compiled a fantastic number of original VW brochures from markets around the world, and has used their artwork, texts and technical specifications to great benefit to illustrate the development and evolution of these hard-working vehicles; early Microbuses are seen in the beautiful drawings of Bernd Reuters, while newer models are seen through evocative period photography. Although it is pricey for a paperback, Volkswagen lovers will find this book a great addition to the shelf.
About the Author
Richard Copping s interest in the Volkswagen marque began when a Bentley owning schoolmaster gave him a lift in his other car, a Beetle. Richard passed his driving test in just such a car and Volkswagens have adorned his drive ever since. His first book inevitably covered the subject of the world s most popular car, but now both in his writing for the magazine VW Motoring and with articles for other publications, he embraces all members of Volkswagen s expanding family, including the Transporter. The author of several volumes, his training as a historian and enthusiasm for the subject matter has ensured both a knowledgeable and lively approach.