After 80 years the Volkswagen Beetle is finally dead.
The writing was on the wall. With dwindling sales and the 80th anniversary on the way, VW knew it was no longer possible to keep the love bug on life support. As per Auto Guide on their report on the final edition Beetle that heralds the end of the VW Beetle earlier today (Sept. 13,2018) this isn’t the first time VW used the “final edition” moniker.
— Roadshow (@roadshow) September 14, 2018
The first time they used the “final edition” name was in 2003 with the iconic Type 1. At that point, VW already produced a record-breaking 21 million Type 1s. At that point, sales were lackluster at best with annual sales of 30,000 globally, still a lot for a car first engineered in the late 30’s. That Final Edition came in light blue, had a 1.6L engine, white wall tires, a CD player with four speakers, chrome bumpers, hubcaps, a Wolfsburg emblem among other “final edition” spec accessories. That beetle marked the end of the air-cooled era.
At that point, the new Beetle was already in production and in full-swing, taking the 90’s by storm by 1997 with a 1998 model year introduction. It’s hard to believe that the Beetle we have today first hit the market 20 years ago, but here we are.
This final edition beetle as per Jalopnik will come in coupe and convertible including special blue paint, chrome accents, a special badge, and limited edition chrome 17-inch wheels. The interior compliments what’s outside with a color-matched theme.
The Final Edition SE starts at $23,045, $4250 more for the convertible and $2950 above the SE for the SEL.
The VW Beetle is an iconic car of the 20th and 21st century that has soldiered on far longer than anyone imagined. But with changing shifts towards crossovers and with cars going to the wayside, a downward trend for the Beetle starting in 2006 and dipping even further in 2013 to today, doesn’t see a slowing down anytime soon. Last year according to GoodCarBadCar, only 15,166 Beetles left dealer lots.
It was a good run Beetle, but your time is done. Perhaps you might return as an EV, as the rumors go, but until then, happy 80 years.