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  • Latest iPad Accessory: an Electric VW Bus


    The put-an-iPad-in-your-car trend hasn't really caught on, and that's kind of a shame. The iPad really does make an ideal instrument panel/car audio controller, but implementations to date haven't been that impressive. However, Volkswagen has been turning heads at the Geneva Auto Show with it's 21st century re-imagining of the VW Bus as an electric vehicle with a built-in iPad, and the way they implemented it is drawing raves.

    Volkswagen's concept car is called the Bulli, which is what the VW Bus was called in West Germany when it was first released in 1950. It shares the bench seats and two-tone paint job of its namesake but other than that and the big VW logo on the front, it bears no resemblance to the original. This is a four-door city car, rather than a minivan, and what's more it has an all-electric drivetrain. Its 113 horsepower electric motor gets the Bulli from 0 to 60 in about 11 seconds, almost twice as fast as its namesake. It has a top speed of 87 mph, and the 40 kWh lithium ion battery pack gives it a range of 185.4 miles.



    The iPad can be docked to a mount on the dash that swivels so that it faces either the driver or the front seat passenger. It can also be removed so the folks in the back can use it to access the same multifunctional display that's behind the steering wheel: the speedometer, navigation system, telephone and trip computer are all available on the iPad. You can also use it to control the vehicle's "media center," including the sound system designed by Fender, the American guitar and amplifier manufacturer.

    The Bulli is only a concept car, but VW did tell attendees of the Geneva Auto Show that direct-injection versions of the automaker's gasoline and diesel powerplants, in displacements of from 1.0 liters to 1.4 liters, could fit inside the engine compartment. So it's possible that we could see a production version of this vehicle... eventually. The popular New Beetle first appeared in auto shows as a concept in the early 1990s, years before it rolled off showroom floors.




    Source: Engadget, images via Volkswagen
    This article was originally published in forum thread: Latest iPad Accessory: an Electric VW Bus started by Paul Daniel Ash View original post
    Comments 32 Comments
    1. iPittsburgh's Avatar
      iPittsburgh -
      It would probably beat a 250cc bike especially depending on the riders weight, 250's are extremely under-powered. However, a 600cc bike would easily handle a GTI.
    1. moon#pie's Avatar
      moon#pie -
      Are you talking track, or street? Big difference. Street, the bike wins (its all about acceleration). Track, GTI wins (where it gets to be more about speed.)
    1. sziklassy's Avatar
      sziklassy -
      Quote Originally Posted by moon#pie View Post
      Electric cars are useless unless the power comes from off-grid. Otherwise the energy is still made using fossil fuels.
      The idea is that less fossil fuel is used to produce the electric energy needed. And in many cases, as is here in Iowa, a ton of our energy is produced by wind turbines, so your statement isn't entirely accurate.

      Not sure about the efficiency of this car, but the volt gets 100 miles per charge, as does the leaf. More when driving city only. To fully charge it costs about a buck. So you can also translate that into $00.01 per mile in gas. What other car can do that?

      My point is simply that there are plenty of other factors to consider here.
    1. moon#pie's Avatar
      moon#pie -
      Quote Originally Posted by sziklassy View Post
      The idea is that less fossil fuel is used to produce the electric energy needed. And in many cases, as is here in Iowa, a ton of our energy is produced by wind turbines, so your statement isn't entirely accurate.

      Not sure about the efficiency of this car, but the volt gets 100 miles per charge, as does the leaf. More when driving city only. To fully charge it costs about a buck. So you can also translate that into $00.01 per mile in gas. What other car can do that?

      My point is simply that there are plenty of other factors to consider here.
      $1? It really depends where you live. The fact is, most electricity is made using fossil fuels.
    1. Snozberries's Avatar
      Snozberries -
      Love the two-tone paint scheme. Why isn't there an apple logo on the hood instead of a VW logo?? -Fail

      -1,000
    1. CynicalDriver's Avatar
      CynicalDriver -
      The first thing I thought of after watching the iPad keynote...

      "What if we could replace the radio, comfort controller, etc.. With an iPad that did it all?"

      I still haven't seen anyone do it right. Sure, they can kinda integrate them, but you still have the base system to contend with. In order for this to truly work, you'd have to get Apple on-board, so they can help write a software package which would truly replace all those knobs and buttons.


      Sent from my iPhone using ModMyi
    1. Rokesomesmeefer's Avatar
      Rokesomesmeefer -
      Quote Originally Posted by GellBrake'rrrr View Post
      NEGATIVE!!! Volkswagen has never made anything that Is as square as the Scion. Don't get me wrong, they may have been a little boxy.... But the edges were a lot more tapered off than they are these days. The old school bus was more like a Twinkie. The new Scion's are like a "BOX". yet, this is my opinion.... But I see a difference between the two. /Especially/ since today's vehicles are more about being smooth and aerodynamic.
      Umm, the '80s and '90s Volkswagen Vanagon models were about as boxy as it gets. I dunno what Scion you are looking at, but there is no Scion in existence that is as close to a box as a Vanagon.
    1. iPittsburgh's Avatar
      iPittsburgh -
      Quote Originally Posted by moon#pie View Post
      Are you talking track, or street? Big difference. Street, the bike wins (its all about acceleration). Track, GTI wins (where it gets to be more about speed.)
      What type of track? A drag strip, road course, or oval track?

      If you're referring to a drag strip (standard 1/4 mile commonly used in testing) then I will take the bike.

      A road course, I would probably lean to the GTI because of the need to brake when cornering, and obviously the car can brake much faster than a bike.

      An oval track, Once again I would take the bike, there is little need for braking.
    1. justin7942163's Avatar
      justin7942163 -
      Bench seats belong in muscle/real cars, not electric cars.
    1. rhekt's Avatar
      rhekt -
      the re-implementation of the VW bus has been in "concept mode" for about 10 years now. $hi?t or get off the toilet already Volkswagon!.....the iPad better come standard as well
    1. Fallguy's Avatar
      Fallguy -
      Its about time for Apple to implement the GPS into the ipad already, so this would actually have a purpose for the driver not just the passengers. IMO

    1. EskimoRuler's Avatar
      EskimoRuler -
      I would drive that car for sure