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Then, in March 2008, I received a long document from Fokko Haanstra summarising the information on the development of the Type 4 he had accumulated over many years from personal research of books, magazine articles and other publications.
He lives in The Netherlands and had read my comments.
As far as Fokko knows, the only public reference to this project was made by Klaus Morhammer in the September/October 1997 issue of the German Volkswagen-dedicated magazine VW Speed (Delius Klasing Verlag, Bielefeld, FGR).
The VW 411 five-door Variant project was given a special design code number: EA 240 (EA = Entwicklungsauftrag or Design Assignment).
No drawings or photographs of this have been seen and, apparently, the EA 240 project was cancelled because of low sales expectations.
The added value of a five-door 411/412 estate car (alongside or instead of the three-door version) would have meant a tremendous enrichment to Volkswagen’s model range at the early 1970s.
A five-door Type 4 Variant could have been positioned much higher above the Type 3 Variant than the three-door version and it is a great pity that such a car was not introduced at the time.
This was also offered in the UK as the Audi 80 Estate and in the USA and Canada as the VW Dasher Wagon and as the Audi Fox Wagon.Volkswagen’s product development strategy from the late 1940s until the early 1970s was based upon four main pillars: In addition there were several other design projects, amongst which was a front wheel drive Mini-VW (EA 48, 1953-1955), a rear-engined six cylinder Chevrolet Corvair-like VW Limousine and Stationwagon (EA 128 / EA 151, 1960-1966) and a “VW-MPV avant la lettre” (Porsche Type 700 = VW EA 76/1, around 1956-1958).