The end has been looming large for the Volkswagen Beetle, and the final unit has rolled out of the sole third-generation Beetle production facility in Puebla, Mexico. The last of the third-generation Beetles is a Stonewashed Blue coupe, and this will go on display at Volkswagen’s local museum in Puebla, the company said.
Both the second- and third-generation Beetles were produced at the Mexican facility, with the former introduced in 1998 as the New Beetle and charting sales of 1.2 million units until the end of production in 2010. The third-generation car followed in 2011, with more than 500,000 units of the latest shape built since.
The original, known as the Type 1 in the US, accounted for 21.5 million units, the last rolled out also from Puebla in 2003. The two most recent generations of the Beetle have collectively been produced in 23 exterior colours, 32 interior trims, 13 varying powertrain configurations and 19 special editions – this includes the Dune, Denim, Coast and #PinkBeetle – being sold in 91 markets worldwide.
“It’s impossible to imagine where Volkswagen would be without the Beetle. From its first import in 1949 to today’s retro-inspired design, it has showcased our company’s ability to fit round pegs into square holes of the automotive industry. While its time has come, the role it has played in the evolution of our brand will be forever cherished, said president and CEO of Volkswagen Group of America Scott Keogh.
The Beetle’s halt in production will make way for a new compact SUV to be manufactured at the Puebla facility, one which will slot into the brand’s line-up below the Tiguan. This will join the Atlas in being an SUV tailored for the North American market. Meanwhile, Malaysia has also received its own commemorative edition, the Collector’s Edition Beetle.
There’s certainly been a wide-ranging variety in the time the Beetle was produced. Which has been your favourite?
GALLERY: Volkswagen Beetle Collector’s Edition in Malaysia
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