WI: VW owned by somebody else

Discussion in 'Alternate History Discussion: After 1900' started by phx1138, Sep 1, 2019.

  1. phx1138 Bocagiste troll

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    I wouldn't say a 4dr needs the Type 3 engine, but a wagon would certainly benefit from it. So would the Type 2 (especially any pickup variant). I don't say it hurts a 3/5dr, but it's not essential, IMO.

    I contemplated a 3/5dr, but I'd do it a lot sooner than 1966. I'd also go to all-strut a lot sooner, too.

    TBH, by the '70s, VW should've switched German production to watercooled already, like the Passat (Rabbit), with *Supers for Mexico & Brazil, & maybe India, all locally-built. That also presupposes they'd be EFI & electronic ignition, which VW could easily have led on, & didn't.

    It's possible the OTL Type 1 body style is retired in favor of the Type 4, with the Type 3 engine, on a slightly modified Type 1 pan, for Latin America & India (& North Africa?), quite early compared to OTL's Type 4. The *Passat could happen sooner, too.

    I've seen proposals for an under-seat mid-engine model that intrigue me, but I'm damned if I can recall the designation... That's getting pretty far afield from what OTL VW management (or anybody, really;) ) is likely to agree to, tho.
     
  2. Masked Grizzly Well-Known Member

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    Volkswagen would likely switch over to watercooled FWD for Western markets from the 70s as in OTL, however a Type 3 engined Beetle 3/5-door hatchback* from the early-60s would have allowed the car to remain relevant a bit longer in the face of ever more advanced opposition (in spite of its rear-engined layout) prior to being pensioned off to South America, etc markets and updated into a Type 4 (or Wasserboxer) engined ATL Super Beetle. More intrigued by the notion of a production 1300-1600cc version of the Beetle 1300 diesel prototype.

    Would like to see ATL Volkswagen produce an earlier version of the EA128 prototype, with the pensioned off South American, etc versions later using a full-production version of the Wasserboxer-derived 140-180 hp 3.2-3.7-litre Oettinger WBX6 6-cylinder engine that is in turn carried over to the ATL Volkswagen SP2.

    You are probably thinking of the Volkswagen EA266 prototype (and its planned derivatives), despite seeing the appeal the project was unlikely to be approved by Volkswagen let alone its Brazilian division and its sophistication would have not made sense being built in places like India and North Africa. However perhaps an ATL UK government/co-op-owned Fedden could potentially save the day in order to replace its own aging model lineup of Beetle-derived cars at the lower-end of the range, especially if the UK government still owns a passive stake in Volkswagen (the closest OTL parallel would be Simca's links with Fiat allowing it to choose a Fiat prototype that formed the basis for the Simca 1000).

    *- The 3/5-door Beetle hatchback would be joined by an ATL production version of the 2/4-door EA97 saloon prototype (that was in essence a Beetle dressed up as a Brazilian market Type 3), with the ATL Type 3 featuring both a slightly longer wheelbase as well as 4-door notchback / fastback saloon bodystyles from the outset (as was invested during development).

    Curiously it seems the Type 4 engine was capable of being stretched to 2.4-litres and putting out around 135-150 hp via tuning by Volkswagen engine specialist Willibald during development of the Porsche 984 prototype as a proof-of-concept one-off, an alternate earlier version would have been potentially useful for an ATL Type 4 (in place of the 911-powered rally car), SP2 and the 914.

    Would also be interesting seeing a sub-Beetle 3-door hatchback / 2-door saloon VW analogue of the BMW 700, powered by a rear-mounted 26-32 hp 650-800cc Flat-Twin engine.
     
    Last edited: Sep 10, 2019 at 9:07 PM
  3. phx1138 Bocagiste troll

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    IMO, *VW has to go to watercooled before OTL. With 3/4/5dr models, & so better sales, they'd crash from even higher when the Type 1/derivatives stop selling in Europe & North America--& they will.

    Does that mean something as simple as a Subaru-type waterboxer & OTL Type 3 body? Maybe.
    IMO, if *VW's going to watercooled, it makes sense to "clean break" in the major markets, while leaving the Type 1/derivatives for "lesser" markets, more/less untouched: let them do local variants if they want.
    I'd add a diesel variant of the 4dr, at least, in a heartbeat. That would be an ideal European taxi model, & it wouldn't hurt in the Type 2 commercial models, either. (Not sure about a police diesel sedan, but maybe.)
    Not a fan of the styling. Tweak the Type 3 notch: that keeps the "VWness". (It also wants a 4dr version never seen OTL...)
    I would happily have that in the *Type 3, & optional for the Type 1 "Supers" & Transporters.

    It might need detuning a bit for the *Type 1s, but as a top-range *Type 3, or for the cabrio models, it would be ideal.

    I'm not after turning VW into a Porsche analog--but if the average power of the competitors is around 150hp...

    I'm also seeing the *Type 3 as an answer to BMW's entry-level model, after a fashion.
    That's the one.

    Is it a longshot? No question. Thing is, if management is different enough any of this happens, it might be different enough to get that approved, too. (In short, I might be inclined to just handwave them doing it & say, "Live with it.":p ) Would it go into production outside Europe? Maybe never, especially if the *Type 1 is doing (a lot) better.
     
  4. marathag Well-Known Member with a target on his back

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    OTL Vdub crankcases took a beating when running on gas with near redline rpms. between that and the weak conrods, you're looking at a mostly new engine that looks like a VW Boxer
     
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  5. marathag Well-Known Member with a target on his back

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    VW was infected with 'Model T-itis' why stop building such a successful vehicle?
    Henry got away with it for almost 15 years from when the Dodge Brothers bailed when HF would not do the easy improvements the DBs wanted in 1913. VW clung to the Beetle for too long in the same way, the Super Beetle should have never happened
     
  6. phx1138 Bocagiste troll

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    IMO, *VW designing a clean sheet diesel isn't out of the question.

    In ref durability, any thoughts about other users of the Type 1/Type 3 engine finding it flawed, fixing it, & having *VW copy those fixes? (Substitute somebody for OTL Porsche.) In the same vein, would use in *Formula Vee/Super Vee do it?
    IMO, there's truth in that, but it's not (quite) so simple. IMO, the Type 1 could have kept selling in some markets if upgraded soon enough. Waiting for '71 for strut suspension was too late. Getting the K-Jetronic sorted took too long.

    IMO, updating the Type 1 sooner, & more systematically, would have been a big help. Not enough to keep it selling in Europe/NAm past about 1980, but enough to keep it selling past OTL end of production.

    So, a proposal (handwavium as needed): Canadian takover at end of WW2. Put 4dr in production immediately with 2dr & cabrio (with suitably brilliant CEO installed). Add 3/5dr & wagon (with Type 3 engine) within a couple of years. Go to "Super" standard around 1955. Add optional flat 6 by 1960. Prepare to replace Type 1 series beginning 1965. Introduce *Golf or similar 1971-2, as Type 1 sales in Europe/NAm decline. End Type 1 sales in those markets around 1980; contine in Mexico, C/SAmerica, North Africa, & India.
     
    Last edited: Sep 10, 2019 at 10:14 PM
  7. marathag Well-Known Member with a target on his back

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    put in a Corvair engine.
    No joke.
    That was the quick and dirty way of getting a dependable 90hp engine in a Beetle back then. Though most did it with the higher HP versions:winkytongue:
     
  8. phx1138 Bocagiste troll

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    I know. (It was being done, occasionally, as late as 1985. By then, tho, IIRC, Porsche was more favored.)

    I want a genuine VW flat six, so maybe Oettinger.

    Or maybe an early version of the VR6...:cool:
     
  9. Peabody-Martini Well-Known Member

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    There were plenty of lost opportunities, the EA48 for example. When you see pictures of it, you realize that it might have been a VW Golf a decade and a half early.
     
  10. Masked Grizzly Well-Known Member

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    Cannot see it produced outside Europe, an ATL surviving Fedden is really the only suitable candidate especially if the UK government has a passive stake in Volkswagen, thereby saving the EA266 project from being destoyed by Leopard 1 tanks (as was the case in OTL).

    Am not after Volkswagen going in a completely radical direction from the late-50s to 60s, rather looking at them at minimum doing the necessary changes needed to revamp their air-cooled cars prior to switching over to watercooled FWD layout as in OTL (with non-Western markets gaining the Wasserboxer engines)

    The Type 3 does need a slightly longer wheelbase and 4-door notchback / fastback variants, however would probably give it a 68-80 hp 1679cc Type 4 engine at most while the Type 4 itself receives a 90-99 hp 1970cc+ version of the Type 4 unit. Curiously it seems the Type 4 engine was capable of being further stretched to 2.4-litres and putting out around 135+ hp via tuning by Volkswagen engine specialist Willibald during development of the Porsche 984 prototype as a proof-of-concept one-off, an alternate earlier version would have been potentially useful for an ATL Type 4 (in place of the 911-powered rally car), SP2 and a VW (as opposed to Porsche) 914.

    Found interesting link here on the Type 3.

    Could see the Wasserboxer-derived 140-180 hp 3.2-3.7-litre Oettinger WBX6 6-cylinder engine being used in non-Western versions of the EA128 and Type 2 (T3), along with possibly the Type 4, SP4 and 914 or VW Cheetah though it is unlikely the engine would be carried over to the Beetle and Type 3. In addition to a 120-130 hp 2.47-litre Wasserboxer 4-cylinder derived from the 180 hp 3.7-litre Oettinger WBX6 6-cylinder.

    This Beetle in question would ideally appear in the early/mid-60s before being pensioned off to Brazil, etc and updated to something resembling the Type 4 engined Super Beetle 4-door (aka 5-door in this instance) as in the Jalopnik article.

    The 3/5-door Beetle hatchback would be joined by an ATL production version of the 2/4-door EA97 saloon prototype (that was in essence a Beetle dressed up as a Brazilian market Type 3) powered by 27.5-65 hp 1000-1600cc flat-4 engines (the smallest engine from the Porsche Type 534 prototype) possibly featuring a shortened wheelbase and length (akin to Porsche Type 534 prototype), with the ATL Type 3 featuring both a slightly longer wheelbase as well as 4-door notchback / fastback saloon bodystyles from the outset (as was invested during development).

    Would also be interesting seeing a sub-Beetle 3-door hatchback / 2-door saloon VW analogue of the BMW 700, powered by a rear-mounted 26-32 hp 650-800cc Flat-Twin engine.

    It is possible and would be quite a sight had it been produced. - https://web.archive.org/web/2008072...wheelspin/ws_aug-sept-2003/diesel-beetle.html


    Agree to some extent though Volkswagen were not inclined to make it and the German government was concerned it would put the likes of Borgward and others out of business. https://jalopnik.com/vw-almost-designed-the-mini-back-in-1955-1702938661

    However in a 3/5-door Beetle hatchback scenario with pancake Type 3 engine, it would have also be interesting seeing a sub-Beetle 3-door hatchback / 2-door saloon Volkswagen analogue of the BMW 700, NSU Prinz 4 and Fiat 133 powered by a rear-mounted 26-32+ hp 650-800cc+ Flat-Twin engine.
     
    Last edited: Sep 11, 2019 at 8:26 AM
  11. phx1138 Bocagiste troll

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    Nice.:cool: Thx.
    I don't see Fedden involved at all, but he might be the one I'd need to get something so radical approved.
    I agree entirely. I meant to upgrade the Type 1 as much as possible & soonest (& offer the widest model range on the same pan), while realizing watercooled is, ultimately, a must.
    I don't see the Type 3 as being too small, myself. I've photoshopped a longer-WB version, & it loses the classic VW feel, to my eye. (And that's in a 4dr.) I do agree a 4dr & 3/5dr hatch would be smart, but I'm no fan of the Fastback, so I'd probably ditch it in favor of a wagon with Taurus-like rear end (maybe K-back).
    I can't say I know enough about the guts of the Type 1/3/4 engines to comment. I could happily see the original *Type 3 pancake given any Type 4 mods necessary, especially since I agree, the Type 3 should be the standard. (A *Type 1 wagon makes that almost mandatory, & a hatch makes it sensible.)

    I wouldn't go as far as a rally car at *VW, I don't think, but the same basic case could easily be used by other makers (in particular my TL Porsche-analog).
    I had in mind something akin to the OTL Porsche 2.0 flat six for the Type 1s, 3s, & cabrios (maybe up to 3 liter), but not radically high power (for the era). I only imagine a higher power version in the Type 3 (and cabrio) as a limited model, at a price premium; Type 4s would benefit from better torque on larger displacement, less than power. It's about here I'd bring in the *KGs, standard with the six (probably not bodied by Karmann, tho).
    I'm seeing all VW products (for Europe/NAm) up through about 1970 with the Type 1 & (later) Type 3, or a flat 6 based on them, before going all-watercooled around '71-2. At that point, I'd send the aircooled models to "subsidiary" markets. The first watercooled could be anything from the Brasilia to the Puma in styling, or something else, but underneath, they'd be essentially OTL Golf.
    I do like the EA48, but I can't help think it'd be VW cutting their own throat.:eek::eek: Even the Type 1 couldn't have been enormously profitable OTL, could it? This would cost about as much to produce, & have a nearly zero profit margin...

    Add opposition from the government...

    It would have to be limited to a couple of prototypes & in-TL WIs (kind of like OTL:openedeyewink: ).

    Unless they dust it off in the '80s as an answer to the kei cars? To the Omni/Omni GLH?:cool: (Hmmm...bodied by Bertone, akin the Innocenti Mini?:cool: )
    I have to think 0-60 in 60:eek: wouldn't pass muster, even in the Type 1.
     
  12. Masked Grizzly Well-Known Member

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    Maybe in certain markets, a 1600 version would probably just about pass muster in the Type 1 and others in Western markets.

    Not Fedden himself meant the state/co-op-owned company that carries his name (if it carries on his name - akin to W.O. Bentley after Rolls-Royce acquired his company), the fact the UK government would have a stake in both ATL Fedden Motors and Volkswagen would open up the possibility of the two companies maintaining ties with each other (reminiscent of Italian Fiat and French Simca), allowing Fedden to develop unique or related versions of air-cooled Volkswagens including Type 4-based 102-150 hp 2.5-3-litre 6-cylinder.

    With the UK government basically acquiring the rights to produce the EA266 and related derivatives at a discounted price from Volkswagen in order to replace its own aging model lineup at the lower-end of the range as a sort of make-work scheme to keep the British unions sated.

    Basically it seems the OTL Type 3 occupies a strange position between the Beetle and Type 4, in both only being available with 1.5-1.6-litre engines minus any 4-door variants (Brazil being the exception). It was apparently conceived with a longer wheelbase during development before sharing the Beetle wheelbase, whereas the OTL EA97 prototype was also derived from the Beetle platform and planned to use 1.1-litre+ engines before being abandoned.

    The solution IMO would be for the Beetle and EA97 to be twinned in terms of platform yet both soon featuring the Type 3 pancake engine (in 1.1-1.6-litre displacements), whilst being differentiated in terms of bodystyle with the Beetle being a 3/5-door hatchback and the EA97 being a 2/4-door saloon. The ATL Type 3 meanwhile would feature a slightly longer wheelbase, 4-door variant and 1500-1700/1800cc Type 3 - Type 4 engines to place some distance between it and the updated Beetle / EA97. With the Type 4 in turn featuring enlarged 4-cylinder engines up to 2.4-litres as a separate in-house alternative to any 911 Flat-6 proposal (let alone any Flat-6 Beetle or Type 3 - with EA128 being the initial exception).

    Had the following link in mind regarding the rally car reference to a 911-engined Type Four, though it seems a 90 hp 2-litre 4-cylinder Type 4 variant was considered. - http://www.rastall.com/412/vw-ea240.html
     
  13. phx1138 Bocagiste troll

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    Some places, maybe just. As a taxi model, it wouldn't be outrageous.
    That's clearer in my mind, thx. I've been thinking there's no gov't involvement at all, past the initial takeover: turn over immediately to private ownership. And I wouldn't rule out Fedden himself playing a part, if *VW management needed a designer, they'd just need to ride herd on his more outlandish ones.;)
    Given HMG involved, that isn't a bad idea; as noted, I'd leave it to private business. That said, a private deal between *VW & Austin, or Datsun, to build a "microcar", wouldn't seem completely crazy--especially given *VW is getting a piece of the action, without bearing the full cost.
    I've never heard that before.
    The solution IMO would be for the Beetle and EA97 to be twinned in terms of platform yet both soon featuring the Type 3 pancake engine (in 1.1-1.6-litre displacements), whilst being differentiated in terms of bodystyle with the Beetle being a 3/5-door hatchback and the EA97 being a 2/4-door saloon. [/quote]
    TTL, if the *Type 1 was a bit longer-WB (& with a 4dr almost from the start, that would be sensible), the Notch would be, too; I imagine them on a common pan. (TTL, it wouldn't still be Type 3, tho.) I'm hoping to avoid more bodystyles & stampings, to keep production cost down, &, in essence, keep OTL's VW "style" as long as I can: that is, one model, styling not radically changed, for decades.

    By the time a *Type 3 comes along, tho, it might end up being on a *Golf platform anyhow--or might just never happen at all.:teary: (TBH, I'd sooner have a watercooled *Type 3 than the Rabbit, & leave the *Rabbit for an Omni-fighter.)
    I do like the EA41 & Porsche 555.:cool:

    That said, have I been crossing myself up, calling the Bus a Type 4?:oops::oops::oops: No, I'd give it the flat 6 as an option, & IMO, the OTL Type 4s never happen. (I'm also thinking in somewhat different Type numbers than OTL...) There wouldn't be any cross-design with my Porsche analog, tho there would be idea transfer, since (at first, anyhow) it would be little more than a rebodied Type 1; as time went on, the goals would diverge too much--& that company's founder wouldn't be quite so prolific.

    Come to think of it, TTL, if Porsche himself conceived the *EA57, it might end up being produced somewhere domestically, like Turkey or Egypt...
     
  14. Masked Grizzly Well-Known Member

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    It is possible that the VW-like ATL Fedden would opt for its cars being clothed by the likes of Pininfarina or more likely Ghia for the late-50s to early-60s (via the Volkswagen EA53 Ghia, Ghia 4-door Porsche saloon, Ghia 4/5-door Porsche saloon prototypes). Unlike Volkswagen, Fedden would be unconstrained from producing a British Ghia-styled equivalent of the 4-seater Porsche 695 prototype let alone a V8 Tatra challenger at the top of the range.

    Neither Austin/BMC nor Nissan would have any reason to get involved, Alec Issigonis himself loathed the Volkswagen Beetle with a passion.