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Volkswagen Raffles Final Beetle For Charity

Introduced with great pomp and circumstance in the 1930s, the Käfer was heavily inspired by the Tatra V570. From the air-cooled boxer to the rear-wheel-drive layout and aerodynamic design, there’s no denying that Ferdinand Porsche took plenty of inspiration from the Czechoslovak prototype as well as the Standard Superior created by German engineer Josef Ganz.
Final Volkswagen Beetle 12 photos
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Fast-forward to the New Beetle from 1997, and Volkswagen switched to an air-cooled engine, front-wheel drive, and the direct-shift gearbox. The long-awaited successor of the original enjoyed a fair bit of commercial success in the first years on sale, but as the retro-flavored trend continued to fall from grace, so did demand for the Beetle. The second generation from 2011, based on the A5 platform, didn’t fare too great either despite the improved styling.

It’s been rumored for quite some time that Volkswagen will pull the plug on the Beetle, and the inevitable happened in July 2019 at the Puebla production plant in Mexico. The factory will fill the void with a compact crossover for the North American market - the Tarek - sometime in 2020.

Marking the end of the Final Edition's production run with a raffle, Volkswagen bid farewell to the final example of the Beetle in the name of charity. All proceeds will benefit the Erlanger Neuroscience Institute, specialized in treating patients using the latest and the greatest advancements in medical technology.

“We are so pleased to have further helped raise money for such a meaningful care facility,” declared Scott Keogh, chief executive officer of the German group in the Americas. “Volkswagen is continuing to seek out ‘Drive Bigger’ opportunities and working with the Chattanooga MotorCar Festival and the Erlanger Neuroscience Institute is absolutely one of those moments.”

Only available with the 2.0-liter TSI four-cylinder turbo and a six-speed automatic transmission, the Beetle Final Edition was offered either as a coupe or soft-top convertible. 174 horsepower and 184 pound-feet of torque will have to suffice, and fuel economy isn’t exactly impressive at 29 miles to the gallon on the combined driving cycle.

While there are no plans for a direct successor, the MEB electrified platform and I.D. Buggy Concept could come together in the near future for a modern reinterpretation of the Beetle-based Meyers Manx dune buggy

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