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It is with it that it all began. Without the Beetle, there would never have been a Volkswagen. And now more than 70 years after its debut, the iconic Beetle is about to take his leave.
Yes, the model year 2019 will mark the last year of his long and brilliant career for the Beetle.
Marketed just after the War, in 1945, the original Beetle was built until 2003. Yes, 2003! Volkswagen has stopped selling it well before that in Canada, but other markets around the world have been right for much longer.
In us, Volkswagen has spoiled the nostalgic in 1998 with its “New Beetle”, just renamed the Beetle in 2012. All that to say that since 1945, there has not been a year where the famous volkswagen Beetle was not in production.
Was that the sequence terminates on a day.
Where it all began
Before saying farewell to the model, the most important of its history, Volkswagen has been keen to concoct a last special edition. And for the baptized, we chose to make a nod to the place where it all began: Wolfsburg. It is there that is born the Ladybug, and this is where she was built until 1978, before moving to Mexico.
You immediately said, Volks do réinventera not the wheel this year. The differences between this edition Wolfsburg and the Beetle “ordinary” that we used for years are frankly timid.
In fact, the Wolfsburg is roughly that of a Beetle, well-equipped kitchen. For a bill of 24 475$ for the Coupe version and 28 475$ for the convertible, we offer you series the satellite navigation system, keyless access with push button start, heated seats, a sunroof and sensors angle dead. Nothing really revolutionary, you’ll agree.
Volks resumes with the integration of two colors that are unique to this version, the beige “Safari Kingdom,” and the blue “Stonewashed Blue”. A nice nod to the”ultimate edition” of the first generation of the Beetle, which was only available with these two colors when its out of the factory in 2003.
A set “Style” Package offered as an option enhances the design up a notch with headlights and traffic lights at the DEL, beautiful leather seats with patterns of diamonds and alloy wheels of 18 inches instead of 17 inches, which equip the basic version.
Speaking of wheels, Volkswagen has unfortunately missed the boat with the edition Wolfsburg, 18-inch wheels are too big and their modernism does not simply pay tribute to the long career of the Ladybug.
Why not have used the wheels to the retro design, which were, however, available with the Beetle Coast 2018?
On the road
Under the hood, Volkswagen has once again not too broken on the head with this edition Wolfsburg. It takes exactly the same mechanical components that were already other versions of the Beetle.
It is found in the hands of a meteor from the 174-horsepower and 184 pound-feet, courtesy of a 2.0-litre turbocharged engine. Without being a great sport, the Beetle defends itself well on the road and offers a precise steering that makes it rather fun to operate.
Its format is rounded and its large glass spaces result in excellent visibility that we enjoy on the road. That said, we would love even more if it was still offered with a manual transmission. It was abandoned last year and Volkswagen was unfortunately not thought good to bring it back into the scenery for the ultimate edition. Another great opportunity missed.
Rest with the badges Wolfsburg that has been placed on its front fenders, this latest Beetle has already its place in the great book of automotive History.
This is only a goodbye?
The Beetle no longer has the success of its sunny days, but we will remember her as a true homerun for Volkswagen in Canada.
Volks has managed to drain some 58 000 units since its return in 1998. The first Ladybug, she has made the happiness of 487 863 owners in this country between 1952 and 1979!
Certainly, the sales have slowed down, but the aura around the Beetle remains the same. It makes you smile at first glance. And if Volks bids her farewell for the time being, do not believe that it is necessarily for the good.
It would not be surprising to see the automaker back in full force in a few years with a new generation of vehicle that would resume the name and the visual signature of the Ladybug. A model all-electric, perhaps?
In this industry, it’s never say never.
Technical data sheet
Name: Volkswagen Beetle Wolfsburg 2019
Base price: 24 475$
Configuration : the Vehicle front-wheel drive with engine at the front
Engine: Engine four-cylinder 2.0-litre turbocharged
Transmission: Automatic six-speed
Power/torque: 174 hp/ 184 lb-ft
Fuel consumption announced: 9.0 L/100 km (city) / 7.1 L/100 km (highway)
Warranty basic: 4 years / 80,000 km
Competition: Mini Cooper, Fiat 500