Volkswagen announced their plan to discontinue the Beetle after the 2019 model year. A press release from the VW corporate office described the decision making in discontinuing the model.
“The loss of the Beetle after three generations, over nearly seven decades, will evoke a host of emotions from the Beetle’s many devoted fans,” said Hinrich J. Woebcken, President and CEO, Volkswagen Group of America, Inc. He also said there are no plans to replace the Beetle. Volkswagen also announced plans to create a Final Edition model of the Beetle.
The current version of the Beetle dates back to 2010 when it was redesigned to have a more masculine look than the predecessor, the New Beetle. That version debuted for the 1998 model year. The original Beetle dated back to 1939 and became a fixture of American roads during the 1960s and 1970s.
The news comes at a time when American drivers continue to gravitate toward SUVs, trucks, and crossovers. Sales of SUVs are expected to surpass those of passenger cars this year. Ford recently announced plans to not replace all their passenger cars as current model runs come to an end, save for the Mustang. Also, the Toyota RAV4 officially surpassed the Camry as the best-selling non-truck vehicle in the US in 2017.