It was the Bulli journey of their lives – three months, two continents, 20,000 kilometres (12,420 miles) and to one destination, the Volkswagen Commercial Vehicles assembly plant in Hannover.
At the beginning of March, five Volkswagen fans left their homeland in Malaysia in three Bullis and one VW Beetle. On arriving in Hannover they were greeted warmly at the production site and even allowed to bring their vintage vehicles into the factory halls where they observed production of the latest T-Series model.
Cliften Nathaniel (T2), Terence Moses (T1), Stephen Pang (T1), Monica Xavier and Udhaya Kumar (Beetle) have arrived at their destination. Proudly they drive their cult vehicles onto the production site where they are given a warm welcome by Friedrich Mattiszik (Production). “We know that we have Bulli fans across the globe. But to see them travel to us from such a distance in their vintage vehicles – we have never experienced this before. It is an honour for us to show our plant to these globe-trotting fans. This is, so to speak, the birthplace of the vast majority of T-series vehicles.”
Stephen Pang: “This is a dream come true for us. We always wanted to go to the place where the Bullis were built. Now we not only know how quality vehicles drive, but also where they originated over the vehicle generations. It is impressive how perfectly humans and robots work together and how large the factory is.”
Their route in the Bullis (two from model year 1967, one from 1978) passed through Thailand, Laos, China, Russia and Europe. Terence Moses: “Bullis are simply indestructible. And when they do need repair, we can usually handle it ourselves.” To ensure this was possible, they had tyres, replacement parts and tool sets lashed to their fully laden roof rails, along with countless pieces of luggage.
Another highlight for the Malaysian Bulli owners was their weekend visit to the Volkswagen vintage meet in Hessisch-Oldendorf (Lower Saxony). Around 45,000 fans attended this event to admire 900 vehicles from 28 countries, including from Malaysia. For the fans, it goes without saying that Bullis are far more than just cars: works of art and love, and an expression of an entire lifestyle.
After their stop in Lower Saxony, the Bulli fans take to the road once again to visit countries including Belgium, France and Scandinavia as part of their mission. They are visiting orphanages in various countries and participating in a number of charitable events for their #Live2drive campaign.
After travelling a total of 50,000 kilometres (over 31,000 miles), the trip with their vintage vehicles finishes in Malaysia.