End of Production for the Volkswagen Beetle
The Volkswagen Beetle is one of the most iconic cars ever made. It’s been around for seven generations over the span of eight decades. The modern iteration has been continually improved, but unlike other vehicle models, has stayed true to its unique original design. It continues to be a favorite among car-enthusiasts and the casually intrigued alike.
After all these years, and all the success, when and why did Volkswagen stop making the Beetle?
Volkswagen rolled its last Beetle off the assembly line on July 10th, 2019 at its plant in Puebla, Mexico. This somber yet celebratory occasion was marked with ceremonies (including tunes from a Mariachi band), as that final model was sent off to be immortalized in a museum. The factory is set to switch to manufacturing an SUV for the North American market, in keeping with the changing times.
Why did Volkswagen stop manufacturing the Beetle?
The current generation of the Volkswagen Beetle hasn’t been selling as well as past record-breaking iterations. This is largely due to a changing market- more and more buyers are leaving sedans behind to buy SUVs and crossovers. Other automakers have also famously ceased production on many of their popular sedan models.
Volkswagen is also looking to an all-electric future, planning to have its entire lineup electrified by 2030. This era is being lead by their new battery-powered electric compact, the ID.3.
Will Volkswagen make the Beetle again?
Volkswagen, like most automakers, has a history of discontinuing cars and bringing them back to much fanfare. It would seem all the more plausible as electric Beetle concepts have been shown in the past, that the Beetle would make a return as part of the electric ID lineup.
However, in early 2019 the CEO of Volkswagen was asked by Motortrend about the possibility of an electric Beetle, and his reply was a firm “No.” He went on to explain that Volkswagen shouldn’t try to merely recreate its historic cars in electric variations.
It seems Volkswagen is trying to move forward without getting mired in (or relying on) its past. This is interesting, considering the planned 2022 return of the beloved Volkswagen minibus in the form of the I.D. Buzz.
However, in our humble opinion, all we can do regarding the future of the Volkswagen Beetle is fall back on the old cliché: “Never say never.”