This VW camper van drives sideways

Nope, this circa 1976 VW camper van hasn't just been tipped over. It was built this way.

This is the Trippy Tippy Hippy Van and it's the latest crazy race car creation by Maryland police officer and mechanic Jeff Bloch AKA Speedycop. To make it, the van was mounted on top of another vehicle, a 1998 VW Rabbit. He and his team spent over 1000 hours, in just five weeks, to get the sideways van ready for the racetrack. Amazingly, it does zero to 60 in eight seconds!

Bloch, known for his unusual vehicle builds, explains how he came up with the idea for the Trippy Tippy Hippy Van:

The idea came to me—as so many other bad ideas do — by simply wondering how to make something totally conventional into something far more creative and entertaining to watch. Our previous builds were based on the same premise. What if a plane could be made into a racecar? We built the Spirit of LeMons, a ’56 Cessna 310, into a totally reliable street/track car that handles incredibly well, despite the mundane ’87 Toyota van base. I chose that particular model van because it uses a mid-engine/RWD setup and torsion bars in the front, which made for a low center of gravity, and left no strut towers protruding from the narrow fuselage. What if we did it again, but with a helicopter? Most helicopters have quite rounded bodies and use narrow skids, so even if a fuselage could somehow be sourced cheaply enough, neither would hide the chassis of even a small vehicle inside.
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The German auto industry started conspiring on diesel emissions in the 1990s

In the 1990s, Volkswagen, Audi, BMW, Porsche, Daimler and other German auto-makers formed a secret pact to price-fix a diesel emissions control substance called AdBlue, according to Der Spiegel, who cites memos from those meetings that VW and Daimler have sent to German competition enforcers. Read the rest

Delightful animations of colorful distorted cars

Cut & Shut is the latest work by illustrator Chris Labrooy, showing whimsical imaginings of icon VW Beetles and other models come to life. Read the rest

Just park this VW van fridge right in your kitchen

I know what you're probably thinking and, nope, this isn't a concept design for a refrigerator that looks like a Volkswagen Bus. They actually made a VW Bus fridge!

This stylish kitchen icebox is a collaboration between Volkswagen and Gorenje, a Slovenian manufacturer of large home appliances.

Gorenje Retro Special Edition Refrigerator, modelled by the legendary Volkswagen van T1 from the 50's, also termed as the 'Bulli', will undoubtedly revoke a notion of the decade with its pastel blue or Bordeaux red colours and smooth, rounded edges. Besides giving your home a touch of retro, it will win your heart with its practicality and the latest technology, making it an indispensable item of your kitchen setting.

This is what it looks like in "Bordeaux red" (swoon):

(Foodiggity, Yanko Design)

Previously: A Volkswagen microbus tent, for camping or just hanging out Read the rest

Modelmaker creates an abandoned VW microbus

Starting with an off-the-shelf model of a VW microbus, Hernandez Dreamphography creates Inner Trip, a diorama of a weathered VW on a wintry field. Read the rest

Friends find abandoned 1955 VW van on a mountain and repair it onsite

AirMapp is a great channel of rescued and refurbished VW vans. They found a 1955 panel van abandoned for decades in the mountains. At first they planned to tow it to a shop, but then they decided to take the parts up the mountain. Very satisfying ending. Read the rest

How Audi cheated emissions tests: if (steering) then (pollute)

A report in BILD am Sonntag claims that the California Air Resources Board (CARB) has uncovered the secret test that Audis were programmed to perform to determine whether to pollute like crazy or to pretend that they were low-polluting, legally compliant vehicles. Read the rest

100 million VWs can be unlocked with a $40 cracker (and other cars aren't much better)

In Lock It and Still Lose It—On the (In)Security of Automotive Remote Keyless Entry Systems, a paper given at the current Usenix Security conference in Austin, researchers with a proven track record of uncovering serious defects in automotive keyless entry and ignition systems revealed a technique for unlocking over 100,000 million Volkswagen cars, using $40 worth of hardware; they also revealed a technique for hijacking the locking systems of millions of other vehicles from other manufacturers. Read the rest

Dieselgate: A Volkswagen PowerPoint from 2006 outlined how to cheat U.S. emissions tests

An internal Volkswagen corporate PowerPoint presentation from 2006 outlined how to trick emissions tests -- and the result of that plan to cheat environmental protections, governments, and the people who bought and drove those cars is now known as “Dieselgate.”

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VW offers to buy back 500K demon-haunted diesels

Reuters reports that VW is about to tell the federal judge in San Francisco in charge of its case that it will offer to buy back nearly half a million of its diesel vehicles from owners who were deceived about the cars' emission standards and performance when the company engineered its cars so that they would act daemonically, performing differently based on whether they were being tested or not. Read the rest

Leaked memos suggest Volkswagen's CEO knew about diesel cheating in 2014

German newspaper Bild am Sonntag received leaked internal Volkswagen memos and emails that suggest that then-CEO Martin Winterkorn and his executive team were informed in 2014 of the lethal Dieselgate scam the company had perpetrated, and decided to stall and obfuscate to avoid penalties for emitting titanic amounts of the toxic NOX. Read the rest

It's not just NOₓ. Now Volkswagen says 800K of its cars have false CO2 levels, too

Germany's Volkswagen is already in a whole heap of global trouble after the car maker was caught cheating on U.S. tests for nitrogen oxide emissions. Then, we learned “Dieselgate” also involved VW subsidiary brands Audi and Porsche.

Now it gets worse. Today VW announced that an internal investigation has revealed "unexplained inconsistencies" in the carbon dioxide emissions from some 800,000 vehicles.

Volkswagen logo is seen at a power plant in Wolfsburg, Germany. REUTERS/Axel Schmidt

From AP:

The company warned Tuesday it estimated the possible "economic risks at approximately 2 billion euros" due to the new problem.

It did not identify which vehicles were affected, but said the flaw in no way compromised the safety of any of the vehicles.

The statement says the company will "will endeavor to clarify the further course of action as quickly as possible and ensure the correct CO2 classification for the vehicles affected" with the responsible authorities.

"VW's top management will immediately start a dialogue with responsible authorities regarding the consequences of these findings," a VW spokesperson said. Read the rest

Internet of Things That Lie: the future of regulation is demonology

Volkswagen's cars didn't have a fault in their diesel motors -- they were designed to lie to regulators, and that matters, because regulation is based on the idea that people lie, but things tell the truth. Read the rest

In Volkswagen emissions fraud scandal, proprietary software is the real villain

“Proprietary software is an unsafe building material. You can’t inspect it.”

Columbia University law professor Eben Moglen made that observation 5 years ago. It's timely today, as the Volkswagen emissions fraud scandal--enabled by proprietary software--worsens. Read the rest

Wired's recent “native ad” for Volkswagen vanishes as emissions scandal worsens

Volkswagen's sponsored content may be disappearing around the internet, but the stink about their emissions scandal ain't going anywhere just yet.

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Robot kills worker at Volkswagen factory in Germany

A technician was killed by a robot at a Volkswagen plant near Kassel, Germany.