The VW Beetle has stood the test of time but all good things must come to an end.
The 2019 VW Beetle receives a few tweaks before the entire model line heads for retirement.
Is this really the end? VW says yes . . . but also maybe not.
The original Volkswagen Beetle needs no introduction. It became a symbol of peace, love, and hope. Designed by no less than Ferdinand Porsche, the Beetle was literally bulletproof. It was cheap, reliable, and easy to fix. It had all the makings of a mass-produced car that could survive in every nook and cranny on the planet.
The 2019 VW Beetle is the last of the breed. Production of this enduring model will end next year, but it’s not going away without a last hurrah!
“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.
The Final Edition Beetle is still available in the familiar coupe and convertible styles fans have grown to love. But to commemorate a proper send off, VW saw fit to equip the Beetle Final Edition with different options, unique paint colors, and a newfound attitude.
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The Last Goodbye
There are two Final Edition models of the 2019 Beetle: SE and SEL. The SE gets 17-inch alloys with a 15-spoke wheel design, cloth seats with leatherette trim, and a 6.3-inch touchscreen infotainment system with SiriusXM radio, Bluetooth connectivity, and voice control.
The SEL receives larger 18-inch alloys with a retro-classic disc design similar to the chrome-hubcap wheels of the classic Beetle. You also get Bi-Xenon headlights, front fog lights, LED running lights, LED taillights, a Fender premium audio system, and standard navigation.
Both models also feature body-color side-mirrors, heated washer nozzles, and a sunroof.
In order to ease the pain of saying goodbye, all Final Edition models have keyless access with push-button start, a leather steering wheel, stainless steel pedals, automatic climate control, and a gloss black center console. Also new is a three-color ambient lighting system to further brighten up the interior.
Adequate Motivation & First-Class Safety
All models of the final-production, 2019 VW Beetle receive a 2.0-liter turbocharged four-banger, good for 174 horsepower and 184 lb-ft. of torque. The engine offers modest power to achieve a zero to 60 mph sprint in 7.5 seconds. It’s not as fast as a proper sporty compact, but it can surprisingly zip from point A to point B while still achieving 29 mpg in combined driving.
But if it all gets awry, the Beetle Final Edition also comes with driver-assistance technology. The SE has blind spot monitoring and rear traffic alert. The SEL adds front and rear park distance control.
Color My World
Besides the usual white, black pearl, and platinum gray paint jobs, the Final Edition Beetle adds two unique colors: Stonewashed Blue (which resembles denim jeans) and Safari Uni (which pays homage to the harvest moon beige paint seen in the second-gen New Beetle).
Convertible SEL models can also come with a brown soft top (except for the new Safari Uni paint scheme).
Farewell, Dear Bug
The third-gen Beetle is a fun-to-drive car that offers decent power and practicality. If not for the high base price and unwarranted reputation for unreliability, it would have been a best-seller. With the underpinnings of the previous-generation Golf, it steers and handles with alacrity as well.
Which is why we’re discussing the 2019 VW Beetle with a heavy heart. Is this really the last time we’re seeing the Beetle in all its nostalgic glory? There’s still a slight glimmer of hope.
“As we move to being a full-line, family-focused automaker in the U.S. and ramp up our electrification strategy with the MEB platform, there are no immediate plans to replace the current Beetle,” Woebcken said. “But as we have seen with the I.D. BUZZ – which is the modern and practical interpretation of the legendary Bus – I would also say ‘never say never.’”
The 2019 VW Beetle Final Edition Coupe SE starts at $23,045 and the SEL at $25,995. If you prefer the wind tussling your ‘do, the SE convertible can be yours starting at $27,295 while the SEL starts at $29,995.
Alvin Reyes is the Associate Editor of Automoblog. He studied civil aviation, aeronautics, and accountancy in his younger years and is still very much smitten to his former Lancer GSR and Galant SS. He also likes fried chicken, music, and herbal medicine.