Beetle-Shaped Cage Dives With Discovery Channel’s 'Shark Week'
Apparatus has twin propellers and an onboard air system, and puts viewers 'in the driver’s seat as it cruises along the ocean floor.'
Discovery Channel’s "Shark Week" has been on the air for 25 consecutive years. That's two years longer than "The Simpsons." For this year’s series, "Shark Week" is connecting with the longest-running car model ever, the Volkswagen Beetle, for a promotional tie-in that plays off of the car’s iconic shape.
Volkswagen and the Discovery Channel collaborated with marine biologist and shark expert Luke Tipple, a frequent guest on the program, and his engineering team to create a Volkswagen Beetle shark observation cage. “We wanted the integration to be authentic and fit naturally with the Volkswagen brand, imprinting our signature style on 'Shark Week,'” said Justin Osborne, a marketing executive for Volkswagen of America, in a news release. “The Beetle shark cage plays on the silhouettes of two of the most iconic images, the shark fin and the Volkswagen Beetle.”
The Beetle-shaped cage is made from protective aluminum pipe, like the standard shark-observation apparatus. But this one is outfitted with twin propellers and an onboard air system and, Tipple says, the entire cage varies only a quarter-inch in spots from the landlubber Beetle. According to The New York Times, the 19-inch alloy wheels on the "Shark Week" Beetle are the same optional equipment on models available at dealerships.
"Shark Week" viewers can watch the design, construction and submersion of the Beetle cage in a series of three one-minute segments that began airing Sunday on the program, which aims to put viewers “in the driver’s seat as it cruises along the ocean floor,” Volkswagen said.
The Beetle has a long history of waterborne adventures, although on the surface and never underneath it. Volkswagen aired a famous commercial in the 1970s of a floating Beetle to show that the car is watertight, and Beetles have motored on Lake Michigan and through the Straits of Singapore.
In 1963, a Beetle crossed the seven kilometers of the Strait of Messina between Sicily and the mainland, and a seven-hour cruise in the Irish Sea from the Isle on Mann to the U.K. proved the Beetle seaworthy -- all without a single reported shark attack.
[Source: The New York Times]
LOL visions of the delusional hippies wearing make love not war shirts, getting a new one torn by the police dog or pit bull.
EXPLORE NEW CARS
MORE ON MSN AUTOS
ABOUT EXHAUST NOTES
Cars are cool, and here at MSN Autos we love everything about them, but we also know they're more than simply speed and style: a car is an essential tool, a much-needed accessory to help you get through your day-to-day life. What you drive is also one of the most important investments you can make, so we'll help you navigate your way through the car buying and ownership experiences. We strive to be your daily destination for news, notes, tips and tricks from across the automotive world. So whether it's through original content from our world-class journalists or the latest buzz from the far corners of the Web, Exhaust Notes helps you make sense of your automotive world.
Have a story idea? Tip us off at firstname.lastname@example.org.