After Seven Decades, Final VW Beetle Rolls Off the Assembly Line

By Paul Riegler on 10 July 2019
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VW Beetle TDI Convertible

After eight decades, the longest-running and most-manufactured automobile in history, the Volkswagen Beetle, has become extinct.

Production of the current generation Volkswagen Beetle rolled to an end at the automaker’s plant in Puebla, Mexico, on Wednesday.

The final Volkswagen Beetle was a Denim Blue coupe that will remain on display at the plant’s museum.

Interior of the 2019 Volkswagen Beetle Final Edition SE

Interior of the 2019 Volkswagen Beetle Final Edition SE

The original Beetle, officially known as the Volkswagen Type 1, was suggested in 1933 by German Reichskanzler Adolf Hitler who, at that year’s International Automobil-und Motorrad-Ausstellung, asked the industry to come up with an inexpensive, simple people’s car (Volkswagen is German for “people’s car”) for the country’s new Autobahn network. It was designed for Hitler by Ferdinand Porsche.

The Volkswagen Type 1 became known in Germany as the Käfer and in France as the Coccinelle (ladybug) and was produced in significant numbers only after the end of the Second World War. It was named one of the top four most influential cars of the 20th century, along with the Ford Model T, the Mini, and the Citroën DS.

The current generation made its debut in 2012 and featured a shape that evoked the original Volkswagen Type 1, albeit with a lower and more aggressive stance.

However, Kremlin-watcher like VW watchers at FBT believe another Beetle may be around the corner.

Former Volkswagen CEO Hinrich Woebcken said in 2018 that there are “no immediate plans to replace it,” a statement that leaves the door open, as does a comment in 2017 by VW CEO Herbert Diess that he’s considering an all-electric Beetle on the automaker’s electric-vehicle MEB platform.

(Photo: Accura Media Group)