Friday, 25 June 2010

World Cup Fever Strikes Volkswagen Van Centres

Flag of EnglandImage via Wikipedia

During the World Cup we expect to see countless cars with England flags attached on the roads showing their support for the national team. What are less common are cars and vans which are completely decorated. You may however of spotted some VW vans on the road with complete bumper to bumper designs in red and white.

With World Cup fever gripping the country, Volkswagen Van Centres are joining in with appropriately themed liveries for some of their display and demonstrator vans. In order to show their support for the England team several vans have been customized using the traditional red and white colours of the flag of St George.

Robinsons Van Centre in Norwich has turned a white Volkswagen Transporter van into a mobile England flag with a red cross on the bonnet and sides to replicate the St George cross, plus the England ‘three lions’ shield.

On a bigger scale, Abridge Van Centre in Essex has given Volkswagen’s biggest van, the Crafter, an even more striking makeover with an England flag and images of some of the players. This seems to have really captured the attentions of the locals due to it’s attention-grabbing design.

‘The Crafter is really eye-catching and people actually stop and point at it when you drive down the street,’ said Wendy Williamson, Brand Manager, Abridge Volkswagen Van Centre. ‘It’s amazing how many people are asking to drive it, and we’re sure somebody will want to buy it as it is,’ she continued.

‘These vans show our Van Centres are creative and on the ball. We hope the England team will be as clever and successful on Sunday,’ said David George, Head of Marketing, Volkswagen Commercial Vehicles.

Hopefully the England team will put in such a good performance on Sunday to defeat the German team. If not and we go out on penalties the fact that Volkswagen is a German brand may be remembered by those who were so keen to buy the fully decorated Crafter van!
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Video of the Week: Joystick Controlled Van

This guy has customized his Ford E150 Van so that it is controlled using a joystick. The driver doesn't appear to move his right arm during the video so I'm wondering if this van conversion is due to a disability or just for fun?

Tuesday, 15 June 2010

Volkswagen SA Celebrate the World Cup

It can't have escaped your attention that there is a bit of a football tournament going on in South Africa at the moment. The England goalkeeper Rob Green's cack-handed antics have made him a national punch line. Everyone is somehow remaining positive despite the overwhelming evidence that England will go out on penalties once again. What though does all this have to do with vans?

Volkswagen South Africa's 6000 employees have been getting involved in the world cup which is the first to be played on African soil. The staff are lucky enough to be able to watch games as they happen:

"Volkswagen of South Africa is making the World Cup accessible to all its employees by installing big screen TV’s in all the production areas so staff can watch the South African games. A further 6 000 South African National Team t-shirts and 7 000 vuvuzelas have been handed over to staff with 1,636 soccer tickets up for grabs as employee incentive programmes and lucky draws."

I can only imagine what effect the constant buzz of the vuvuzelas is having on productivity. The VW South Africa staff need to keep their head in the game as they are required to produce 600 VW vans and cars a day. The plant is doing well providing vehicles for South Africa and beyond, if you've ever been to SA you will have seen plenty of vans for hire and sale.

Volkswagen South Africa has arranged four roadshows for staff at their Uitenhage plant in the run up to the world cup. The events, which took place at lunch time in order to keep productivity at a maximum, featured Diski Dancers(Diski meaning football. The dancer performed moves based on football maneuvers such as the “sandwich”, the “shuffle”, the “heada” and the “shoe-shine”.