Most of us refer to the Volkswagen Beetle as the people’s car. But apparently, there is a lot more to this term.
We all know that Volkswagen Beetle was made by order of Adolf Hitler to Ferdinand Porsche to manufacture a Volkswagen (people’s car) during World War 2. But are you aware of the Volkswagen controversy? From which car the beetle was derived?
It is Tatra V570, it was composed 2 years before the beetle itself. It was the people’s car at the time, It is the first aerodynamically optimised sedan with an RR (Read engine, Rear Drive) layout. It has an alluring teardrop design with the engine at the back which has a lot of advantages like less NVH (Noise, Vibration and Harshness), reduced centre of gravity etc.
There is a ‘people’s car’ in every country. India had one too! Like Hitler, the Indian Prime Minister – Indira Gandhi wanted a fancy for people’s car for India. So, Suzuki grabbed this contract and designed Maruti Suzuki 760 which was further developed as the 800 which was a big hit.
Ever heard of the car Yugo? It was quite cheap and hence it was known as the people’s car in America. The car also had huge potential. Hilariously, this car can be blown away with high-speed winds and is often considered among the worst cars.
Citroen 2CV of France was the French Volkswagen designed by Citroen. It was reasonable in cost, reliable, and convenient for people and usually titled as the economy car.
Tata Nano by Tata motors was made and sold in India. It is the people’s car for the new era. Initially, it’s price was just 1 lakh rupees and was the cheapest car of the world up till now with no compromise in the quality of the car.
Even Russia had one, the VAZ-111 Oka named after the Oka river in Russia. This inexpensive, lightweight and simple automobile of Russia had surely won the hearts of many middle-class Russians.
All of these cars are affordable, massively produced and operated by the people and were undeniably the people’s car.