Volkswagen rules out making another Beetle
The Beetle is dead, and this time it's for good.
Volkswagen will end production of the born-again Beetle in the summer of 2019. Since the announcement of its demise, widespread rumors have claimed the model will come back a third time, likely as an electric car, but the company's chief executive confirmed a third-generation Beetle isn't in its product plan.
"You have to do something emotional, but I think we can't cover the historic lineup of Volkswagen with electric cars, and we shouldn't," said Volkswagen Group CEO Herbert Diess in an interview with Motor Trend.
He added that it would be easier to make another Beetle on the MEB platform than on the MQB architecture found under many cars, including the Golf. MEB is built around a massive, lithium-ion battery pack so it's entirely flat; MQB is not. But ease of packaging alone can't make a business case for a new Beetle, and Volkswagen wasn't able to put one together, either. The Beetle is dead, and this time it's for good.
Volkswagen is sending off the Beetle with a limited-edition model named Final Edition (pictured). Production will end halfway through 2019, but its line-up of models won't remain without a retro-styled car for long. The company previously announced the heritage-laced ID Buzz concept will spawn a production van in 2022. It will ride on the modular MEB platform, meaning it will be entirely electric, and its design will be a tribute to the rear-engined, Beetle-based Bus made for decades.