In the 1970s, some inventors from the Californian Irvine had the idea to modify a VW Beetle into a camper.
It was not enough to accommodate two beds, one table, a wall unit and a cooking facility on a VW-chassis and to screw it, but this modification should be made by a drastic cure. It was necessary to separate the car body shortly before the front screen until the rear. An own construction from wood was put on a chassis and a series production engine. The construction was rectangular and was designed as big and wide as possible. The camping construction was at the same time also high enough that an adult person could be able to stand up in this vehicle.
The partnership with Robert Q Riley was the reason for the final breakthrough and publicity of the self-construction outside of the Pacific coast. He recognized the potential of the VW-camper, introduced himself at the manufacturer´s company in Irvine, and he bought the rights for the construction of the camper. On his initiative, in 1977, an explosive drawing was printed in the June-issue of the hobby magazine “Mechanix Illustrated” and also a coupon for the plan with the address of Robert Q. Riley was attached. Alongside the costs for the detailed drawing, the potential VW-camper should have manual dexterity, as the most parts should be done by themselves, what costs further US$ 2.000. Furthermore the VW Beetle base came additionally.
In the USA the reconstruction has become well-established under the name “Minihome”.
More Information: AutoCult.de