Volkswagen to end Beetle production next year

Volkswagen to end Beetle production next year

Hamburg, Germany - February 10, 2017: Black steering wheel with logotype of second generation Volkswagen Tiguan, 4x4 R-Line. Compact crossover vehicle manufactured by German automaker Volkswagen.

Volkswagen has announced plans to stop production of the group’s iconic Beetle car next year.

After almost seventy years of production, the car manufacturer’s plant in Puebla, Mexico, will make the last Beetle in July 2019.

Volkswagen US CEO Hinrich J. Woebcken said in a statement: “The loss of the Beetle after three generations, over the past seven decades, will evoke a host of emotions from the Beetle’s many devoted fans.”

Whilst the group does not have immediate plans to revive the model, the company have not ruled it out.

“I would say ‘never say never,” said Woebcken.

The car was introduced in 1938 during the Nazi era and was introduced to the US 11 years later.

Volkswagen sold 11,151 Beetles in the US in the first eight months of 2018, which is 2.2 percent less than the same period a year earlier.

The car manufacturer now plans to launch a wave of electric vehicles. 

Volkswagen CEO Herbert Diess warned of the higher than expected costs of the electric car production. 

“The burden for our company, such as the cost of bringing to market electric cars, will be higher than expected,” he said in the group’s internal newsletter. “This is particularly so since some of our competitors have been making more progress.”

“We need higher profits to finance our future,” said Diess. “Four percent is a minimum, five percent to six percent allow for some future investments and with seven percent to eight percent we’re crisis-ready.”

The automaker is still dealing with consequences following the from emissions scandal caused by its admitted cheating on diesel emissions tests.

Shares in the group (ETR: VOW) are trading at 139,90 (0937GMT).

 

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