Volkswagen has updated a 1962 Type 2 11-window microbus to produce the electrically-driven Type 20 concept. The launch of the concept car was to celebrate 20 years of innovation and the launch of Volkswagen’s new Innovation and Engineering Center in California (IECC).
The masterminds behind the Type 20 have equipped it with a 10kWh battery, a 2,500-watt onboard charger and an electric motor which produces 120 BHP and 173 lb-ft of torque — a considerable increase from the original van’s sub-50 BHP engine. Volkswagen enlisted its supercar-counterpart Porsche to develop a custom-built active pneumatic suspension that digitally raises the suspension as the driver approaches the vehicle.
Although it maintains its iconic design, the Volkswagen team did give the Type 20 a number of futuristic aesthetic adjustments. The Type 20 is painted in a retro black-on-white color scheme with orange trim and features bold blue headlights. Volkswagen also worked with Autodesk — an American software corporation — to develop the wired rearview mirror support, rims and steering wheel.
Rounding off the concept car’s design is a 720p wide-angle camera system which is integrated into the drivers-side second window which uses real-time facial recognition to identify users of the Type 20. Take a look at the Volkswagen Type 20 microbus concept in the gallery above, and see it in real life at IECC alongside a number of other VW prototypes.
For more reinterpreted icons, take a look at this drift-enabled Lamborghini.