VW Beetle Production Ends As Final Car Is Built In Mexico

Lloyd Doyle
July 11, 2019

The last 65 models of the "Beetle Final Edition" will be sold in Mexico on the internet for a base price of $21,000, and can be reserved with a $1,000 payment. After first announcing of its eventual discontinuation last March 2018, and then releasing the Final Edition six months after, Volkswagen has rolled out the last Beetle at the Puebla plant in Mexico.

"It's impossible to imagine where Volkswagen would be without the Beetle", Volkswagen CEO Scott Keogh said in a statement. But don't expect to see this particular Beetle hitting the streets however as Volkswagen plans to keep it for themselves.

First introduced way back in 1938, the Beetle became an instant hit after World War 2 due to its simplicity, reliability and practicality as the quintessential "people's car".

The original version of the Beetle, a rear-engine vehicle that owners often decked out in colorful paints during the flower power era of the 1960s and '70s, ended production in Mexico in 2003.

"Unlike in West Germany, where its low price, quality and durability stood for a new postwar normality, in the United States the Beetle's characteristics lent it a profoundly unconventional air in a auto culture dominated by size and showmanship", wrote Bernhard Rieger in his 2013 history The People's vehicle. That's right, it will be a museum piece in Puebla as a lasting tribute to the automobile's rich and storied heritage.

Since then, with the introduction of the second and third generations, the Beetle was the one vehicle in the VW line up that retained a genuine sense of individuality and identity.

The Beetle name is being put on hiatus after more than 23 million were sold around the world across three generations.

The end of Beetle production will allow Puebla's resources to shift production to a new compact SUV tailored to the North American market, slotting into the lineup below the Tiguan.

Re-launched as a civilian carmaker under supervision of the British occupation authorities, the Volkswagen factory was transferred in 1949 to the Germany government and the state of Lower Saxony, which still owns part of the company.

After its multi-generational run as a brand mainstay and global automotive phenomenon, the Volkswagen Beetle is ending production.

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