Car models come and go. It’s just part of the nature of the beast. And honestly, there aren’t many tears shed when models like the Lincoln Blackwood, Mustang II, or Chevy Citation are killed. In that way, the auto business is kind of like the record industry — for every Jay-Z, there are a million other rappers with 12-inch singles in the bargain bin. That said? Some models are so iconic, they become not just cars, but symbols of a movement, a lifestyle, and an outlook. The Volkswagen Beetle is one of those cars, and now we have some sad news: The Beetle is going away, again.
Our friends over at Autocar recently spoke with Volkswagen Research and Development honcho Frank Welsch at the Geneva Motor show, and Welsch confirmed that it’s the end of the road for the latest generation of the beloved Beetle. And honestly? We have to admit his reasoning is pretty sound, as he explained that the model was “made with history in mind, but you can’t do it five times and have a new new new Beetle.” If something has run its course, sometimes letting it die a natural death is the best thing you can do.
Now, if you read the headline, you’re probably thinking that there’s some good news to go with the bad. And we’re happy to report that there is. And it’s just the kind of info VW fans have been waiting for. Because the next-gen Microbus is going to carry the retro torch once the Beetle drives off into the sunset. Here’s another bit from that piece:
With MEB [the VW Group’s electric car platform], you can do a bus and be an authentic vehicle with the original shape, and steering wheel mounted like the original. You can’t do that with an engine in the front. The shape you see on the concept is realistic.
At this point, we’d be remiss if we didn’t mention that the electric Microbus concept hasn’t been floated for years. But this time, it really is going to happen. Just like another seemingly mythical spirit animal — the mid-engine Corvette. So if you’re looking to own one of the last new Beetles, it’s time to get to your local AutoNation Volkswagen dealer. And while you’re there, you can inquire about getting on the list for the latest Bus.