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Beetle not developed by Porsche

I know it sounds crazy, but is anyone here from the Netherlands and can read Dutch?

Here is the site to go to (I think):
http://autotelegraaf.nl/

Picked this up allegation from here (Feb):
http://forums.autoweek.com/thread.jspa?forumID=17&threadID=12968&tstart=0

AMSTERDAM - The legendary Volkswagen kever, icoon of the postwar German car industry, has not been developed by Ferdinand Porsche, but by Josef Ganz. That claims Paul Schilperoord in 'The Engineer' magazine.

It was simply nicked, according to the author. Already in 1928, Ganz used the name 'Volkswagen' for his concept car, which had a fixed chassis, engine in the back and rear-wheel drive.

He published in several German illustrated car magazines and registered some patents. According to Schilperoord, Ganz used already the name 'Maikäfer' [May beetle] for its prototype in 1931, long before that name became common practice for the new (postwar) Volkswagen.

A year after Adolf Hitler saw Ganz' Maikäfer in 1933 on a car exhibition, he announced plans for 'Deutsche Volkswagen' and handed Ferdinand Porsche the task to develop it. According to the writer of the article Porsche simply used the plans and designs of Josef Ganz. Ganz was of Jewish ancestors and thus unable to make a fist in nazi-Germany around that time. Already in 1933 he ran into problems and leaves for Switzerland.

Never recognition

The Porsche developed Volkswagen was ready in 1938, but went in production just after war. Eventually more than 21 million have been made when production was officially ceased in 2003. Josef Ganz never got recognition; for historians Porsche is the man behind the Volkswagen, thus Paul Schilperoord in 'The Engineer'.

[Source: AutoTelegraaf, Netherlands, quickly translated from dutch ]

PS: I don't know how old this rumor really is or if it's been disproved yet - just thought I would put better minds than mine to work on it.
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Old 05-12-2005, 02:36 PM
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Well, I never heard this, but the VW beetle designed by a Jew? Take that, Hitler.
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Old 05-12-2005, 04:33 PM
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My understanding is that a few guys came over from the fatherland in the mid-to-late 30's under orders from Hitler to see and buy something simple already in production here. Then take it back and reverse engineer / build the 'new' car because time and resources were very scarce.

They bought and shipped 5 Chrysler Airflows. Look that car up on google for pics. You won't believe it.
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Old 05-12-2005, 04:35 PM
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Ive also heard that Porsche ripped off the design from Tatra...

However would be cool if a fellow Dutchman was the real designer..
Old 05-12-2005, 04:57 PM
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Re: Beetle not developed by Porsche

from the read, it sound as if their point is; Beetle concept not seeded by Porsche.

Clearly, Porsche did a whole lot of development; regardless of who produced the original configuration specification.
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Old 05-12-2005, 05:17 PM
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Quote:
Originally posted by asphaltgambler
Chrysler Airflows..

Oh yea, the bottom two cars are Beetle Prototypes, can you even tell the difference?

This is a good site.........tons of pictures (metric tons).

http://oldcarandtruckpictures.com/Volkswagen/

Quote:
It all began at the end of the summer of 1933 when Ferdinand Porsche was summoned to the Hotel Kaiserhof in Berlin for a meeting with the dictator. Porsche had an outstanding reputation as an engineer. He had been chief designer for Daimler-Benz, Auto-Union, and now had his own engineering consultation firm. In a private conference, Hitler told the engineer his plans for a car.
This is the "above" link (the version we all know):
http://www.oldandsold.com/articles01/article711.shtml



Quote:
It should be small, perhaps a four-seater, have a good durable engine, get 40 miles to the gallon, and be air-cooled since most Germans did not have garages. In 1933, Hitler had described the modern Volkswagen! He even called it a Volkswagen - the people's car - and stipulated that it sell at a low price. Porsche then asked for an idea of the price. With laughter the dictator answered, "At any price, Herr Doktor Porsche. Any price below 1,000 Marks!"
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Last edited by kach22i; 05-13-2005 at 06:00 AM..
Old 05-13-2005, 05:57 AM
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There were so many similar cars being developed in that era that it would be easy to ascribe the original idea for the basic Beetle platform to any one of them. Like so many other great designs, the Beetle represented more of a good application of proven concepts, with some refinement, than any real breakthroughs in any one aspect of its design. The brilliance of the Bug lies in the execution. Dr. Porsche pulled it all together like no one before him had. Saying a Dutchman is responsible for the Beetle is like saying Ford is responsible for the Camaro simply because they had the Mustang first. Nice try, but it just doesn't wash. The development history of the Beetle is simply too well documented to come in at this late hour and try to say anyone other than Dr. Porsche was responsible. He obviously got ideas from other's work, but that is as far as it goes.
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Old 05-13-2005, 06:07 AM
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Quote:
Originally posted by Jeff Higgins
There were so many similar cars being developed in that era that it would be easy to ascribe the original idea for the basic Beetle platform to any one of them.
True.

Here is a SAAB from the same era.
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Old 05-13-2005, 06:42 AM
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How many clean sheet of paper cars ever made?

Karl Benz' first? The Willys MB? The Mini?
Old 05-13-2005, 06:52 AM
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Quote:
Originally posted by gaijindabe
How many clean sheet of paper cars ever made?

Karl Benz' first? The Willys MB? The Mini?
Citroen
Old 05-13-2005, 07:05 AM
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