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Volkswagen Beetle History

Volkswagen Beetle History

The following historical data of the modern Volkswagen Beetle (aka The Bug), manufactured by Volkswagen in Mexico, was retrieved from many sources.

This is only a brief overview of certain important events in the history of the VW Beetle. The "New" Volkswagen Beetle was released for public sale in 1998.

1954 VW Beetle The Volkswagen Beetle actually has many, many years of history dating back from 1938. Adolf Hitler and Ferdinand Porsche came up with the idea for a "People's Car" and it could not reach production until it was backed by the Third Reich.

2006 VW Beetle The "New" Beetle, however, has none of the controversy as did the old style and is quite popular in the USA. In 1994 the VW Beetle concept was shown at the North American International Auto Show with so much enthusiasm that Volkswagen decided to put it into production in 1998.

In 2000, the VW Beetle was available as a convertible. 2001 saw the RSI Model introduced.

More Volkswagen Beetle Info.

More VW Beetle History

The Volkswagen New Beetle is a small family car, introduced by Volkswagen in 1998, drawing heavy inspiration from the exterior design of the original Beetle. Unlike the original Beetle, the New Beetle has its engine in the front driving the front wheels and luggage storage in the rear.

Concept 1

At the 1994 North American International Auto Show, Volkswagen unveiled the Concept 1, a “retro”-themed concept car with a resemblance to the original Volkswagen Beetle.

New Beetle

Strong public reaction to the Concept 1 convinced the company to develop a production version which was launched as the New Beetle in 1998, based on the Golf IV’s larger PQ34 platform. The New Beetle is related to the original only in name and appearance: under the hood, it is a modern car in every way. A convertible was added in mid year to replace the Volkswagen Cabrio.

The New Beetle carries many design features related to the old Beetle: separate wings, vestigial running boards, sloping headlamps and large round tail lights, as well as a high rounded roofline that provides enough headroom for tall drivers. It is currently assembled in VW Puebla factory in Mexico.

Engine choices include the 2.0L inline-4 for the base model, the 1.9L TDI, which was discontinued in 2006, and the 1.8L Turbo inline-4 for the Sport model, which included a sport suspension, and bigger wheels and tires.

Special Editions

From 2001-2003 Volkswagen had a limited edition New Beetle called the Beetle RSi. It included a 225 hp 3.2L VR6 engine, a 6-speed gearbox, and Volkswagen four-wheel drive system 4motion, and Remus twin-pipe exhaust. The suspension was greatly altered at the rear, with geometry more geared to the race track and a rear cross brace behind the rear seats, 80mm wider fenders, unique front and rear bumpers, a rear diffuser, large rear wing, and 18x9 OZ Superturismo wheels. Inside, it was trimmed in carbon fiber, billet aluminum, and bright orange leather. The front seats were Recaro racing buckets.

At the 2005 North American International Auto Show, the Volkswagen New Beetle Ragster concept car was introduced. It was supposed to be a preview of the future design of the New Beetle. The base of the Ragster was a New Beetle Convertible modified with a new roof, giving it a much lower roofline, and a unique paint job with silver double stripes. The interior differs from the original New Beetle, being 2+2, and having distinctive control dials. The Ragster’s rear-view mirror is mounted on its dashboard, a retro feature, reminiscent of the first Type 1s.

Announced at the 2009 Los Angeles Auto Show, the 2010 Final Edition New Beetle features Aquarius Blue paintwork, with the hardtop receiving a black painted roof and the convertible sporting Campanella White painted side panles. In addition to unique 17” wheels, both models will be powered by a 2.5L engine mated to a semi-automatic transmission. Other additions include sports suspension and Final Edition badges inside and out. Both models arrive with integrated fog lights and ESP as standard.

In May 2010, Volkswagen announced that production of the New Beetle will cease in 2011.

VW Beetle Accessories

Sources: Wikipedia, VW.com

Volswagen Beetle Timeline

1998: "New" VW Beetle Released
2000: Convertible Available
2 New Colors Become Available for Online ONLY Ordering
2001: RSI Model Introduced