The Iconic Beetle By Volkswagen Is No More—Is This Foreshadowing The Fate Of All Small Cars?
The company behind the iconic Beetle model, Volkswagen, announced in September 2018 that it would be retiring the vehicle for which the company had become known. However, not before they would be releasing a “Final Edition” series, according to CNN Business.
With the production ending in 2019, the Beetle will officially gain a somewhat “vintage” status. The model has proven to be a resilient one, as it lasted for eight decades, and survived as many s three redesigns in those years. To this day, the Beetle holds the title of one of the most recognizable vehicles on the road today.
The Beetle has been synonymous with such history makers as the Nazis to the hippie flower child culture. The car has history and a history that can not be matched or surpassed.
The first Beetle dates all the way back to the 1930s when then engineer Ferdinand Porsche created a “Peoples Car,” known as “Volkswagon” in the German language, as requested by the soon to be infamous dictator Adolf Hitler. As fate would have it, the actual production of the Beetle didn’t start until well after the Second World War.
In 1968, the Beetles skyrocketing to fame can be credited to Walt Disney and his Studio, who produced the film “The Love Bug.” The star of the film was Herbie, an anthropomorphic racecar who races on the racing circuits in California.
The original, and considered the most iconic, Beetle design was that of the ’60s and ’70’s models, which were produced in Mexico up until 2003. In the models 65-year run, it is estimated that over 21 million cars were produced and sold. In the following years of 1998 and 2012, Volkswagen introduced a whole new generation of the Beetle.
Volkswagen of America president and CEO, Scott Keogh, commented in a statement: “It’s impossible to imagine where Volkswagen would be without the Beetle.”
As for the factory in Mexico that produced the Beetle, it will be used to create a new compact SUV for the market in North America. In their news release making the announcement, Volkswagen declined to go into further details, as reported by CNN
The “Final Edition” series will consist of only 5,961 cars. They will be offered in a convertible or a hardtop, with their prices starting at a coupe for $23,045 and convertible for $27,295. As for the final Beetle to roll of the assembly line—that will be proudly displayed by Volkswagen in a museum in Puebla.
So, what’s the verdict—you decide.
Is the discontinuation of the Beetle an indication of what is coming for all small cars?