new YorkAfter about 20 years, the end is over: Volkswagen stops production of the Beetle. The production in the Mexican Puebla will be discontinued in July 2019, said the American unit of VW on Thursday.
Their boss Hinrich Woebcken justified the step with the fact that VW North America "to a full-fledged, family-oriented automobile manufacturer" and the development of electric cars would drive forward.He did not exclude a comeback of the Beetles.Although there are currently no plans, according to Woebcken – but he added, "never say never",
The "New Beetle" was created in the late 90s and reminded with its design of the original Beetle. In the early years it became a hit in the USA – in 1999 more than 80,000 copies were sold there. Meanwhile, the paragraph has suffered, also because American VW buyers prefer cars the size of a Jetta or Tiguan. Shipments of the Beetle to the US fell last year to 15,166 models, less than one-seventh of sales of the Jetta sedan.
The original Beetle was once so popular in North America that the German carmaker decided in the 1960s to build its first plant in North America. But also due to a dwindling demand, the Beetle was last produced only in Mexico.
VW has already stopped selling Beetles in Germany and other markets. The Wolfsburg-based company wants to make its more than 300 models comprehensive product range leaner. By reducing product complexity, the company wants to cut costs at the same time.
Volkswagen's CEO Herbert Diess is the driving force behind this streamlining since he took over the leadership of the main brand VW in 2015. According to Bloomberg Diess should also have considered reviving the beetle as a fully electric car.
Before that, two last Beetle models will be launched in the US – "Final Edition SE" and "SEL". The cars should be available as a coupe and convertible and cost 23,045 dollars (19,700 euros).