It’s 65 years since the first ‘Bulli’ rolled off VW’s Hannover production line… and looking back, it took some doing!
You can almost picture the scene. Freezing cold conditions, followed by snow and then all-consuming mud as 1000 labourers started work in March 1955 to get Volkswagen’s new Hannover plant built in order to make their Bus. Meanwhile, a small makeshift town is swiftly erected with site offices, supply sheds, huts for accommodation and canteen tents. It sure must have been grim for all involved. Finished the following year, on 8 March 1956 to be precise, production of the Bus finally got underway – and since then more than nine million have left the factory.
Said Bertina Murkovic, Chairwoman of the VWCV Works Council: “Five years ago, when we celebrated our plant’s 60th anniversary, everything surrounding it was truly different: a family celebration and Bulli exhibition in the historic museum were great events for saying thank you. Thank you to our Bulli makers in Hannover, who breathe life into our products. The Transporter, the Bulli, made us great as a brand. Precisely because we have diversity in our genes: products for practically every commercial use on the one hand and for every leisure activity on the other. And it is exactly this diversity that is our future: the T6.1, the new Multivan and soon the ID. BUZZ. That is the cornerstone of our brand and of our site and we can, Hannover can, be proud of it.”
Right on, Bertina!
Facts and figures re: the Hannover plant
• Plant site: 1.1 million square metres (ca. 152 football pitches)
• Number of employees on the site in 2020: 14,800 (incl. Volkswagen Group Components)
• Number of vehicles produced:
1956-2021 – T1 to T6.1 – 9,228,000
1974-1975 – Beetle and Type 181 – 43,000
1975-2003 – LT 1 and LT 2 – 810,200
2017-2020 – e-Crafter – 1,500
1989-1995 – Taro – 61,000
2012-2020 – Amarok – 176,500