volkswagen: bulli at geneva motor show 2011the volkswagen ‘bulli’



at geneva motor show 2011, volkswagen debuted its ‘bulli’ concept, an electrically powered six-seater compact van with the camper capability of its 1950’s bus models, but featuring communications and infotainment integrated via a removable iPad.

based on VW’s 2001 ‘microbus’ concept, the car is a visual departure from the original ‘type 2’ buses (called ‘bulli’ in germany), but houses the same conceptual thinking in a look aligned with the ‘design DNA’ developed by VW for new models.


volkswagen: bulli at geneva motor show 2011 3/4 rear view

the electrically powered ‘bulli’ is is a zero-emissions vehicle,  powered by a lithium-ion battery that offers up to 186 miles to each full charge, and top speeds of 87mph (140kmh). the charging process is engineered to take under a single hour when performed at specially designed ‘electric refueling stations’.the battery is sandwiched in the floor, while the electric motor of the front-wheel drive car is located in the vehicle’s front.

at 13 feet (4 meters) long, the ‘bulli’ features the two-tone paint styling of many original buses, alongside classic touches such as round fog lights, the VW emblems and distinctive wheel housing, and chrome hubcaps, here imprinted with the VW logo. in contrast, however, the car favours a single windshield over the split model, and is topped with a panoramic sunroof. daytime running lights and turn indicators make use of LEDs.


volkswagen: bulli at geneva motor show 2011 the car on show at geneva motor show 2011 image courtesy of ausmotive


inside, like earlier buses, the front of the ‘bulli’ is marked by a single bench seat, with three additional seats in the car’s rear. the front bench features a 2/3 split to increase the stowage capacity of the vehicle, while the rear seat can be completely removed.

in addition, the seats of the ‘bulli’ can be transformed into a large reclining surface, transforming the car into a compact camper.

infotainment and communication is integrated through the mounting of an iPad in the vehicle’s center console.  while climate control and hazard buttons are built into the dock itself, applications, navigation, automatic hands-free phoning, and media playback are handled through the removable iPad, permitting easy integration of functionality in and outside of the car.


volkswagen: bulli at geneva motor show 2011 aerial rendering of the car’s interior


volkswagen: bulli at geneva motor show 2011 the center console provides integration of infotainment and other functionality into a removable iPad


volkswagen: bulli at geneva motor show 2011 interior view


volkswagen: bulli at geneva motor show 2011


insideline explores the car at geneva motor show 2011