At the recent Paris Motor Show, Volkswagen didn’t really reveal much that was unexpected, but some news surrounding the I.D. concept car reveal was interesting — in particular, the fact that the car is to be built on a dedicated “MEB architecture,” one which apparently is based around use of a single rear-mounted electric motor.
Interestingly, Volkswagen used rear motors in many models until the late 1960s — the original Beetle used one, for instance. Will Volkswagen be shifting back to use of rear motors/drivetrains? Will the next-generation Beetle be electric and feature a rear-mounted drivetrain?
That’s a possibility (or just a rumor) going by comments made recently by an unnamed source.
Green Car Reports provides more: “Which is how we came to hear an intriguing rumor about the possible production direction of the next-generation Volkswagen Beetle. Our source for this story knows who he is, but out of professional courtesy, we’ve kept his name out of this article. … Industry insiders say the current Beetle is due to be replaced for the 2019 model year. As of April, however, suggestions emerged that perhaps a replacement would be delayed or even canceled due to the escalating costs of the Volkswagen diesel scandal.”
Continuing: “That doesn’t appear to be the case, we hear, since the Beetle is an iconic car for Volkswagen — and carries with it a lot of good feelings among car buyers that the VW brand could likely use over the next few years. Instead, right now, our source said, VW Group’s product planners are having energetic discussion about what underpinnings to build it on. It was widely assumed that the next Beetle would sit on the MQB architecture that underlies the Golf, the European version of the Passat, the upcoming three-row crossover utility to be built in Tennessee, and the Audi A3, among other VW Group vehicles. But now, our source tells us, VW product planners are strongly considering switching the next Beetle to all-electric power, putting it on the MEB platform instead. The decision hasn’t been made yet, we gather, but the two approaches are said to be in strong contention.”
Interesting if true. But, as always with Volkswagen, who knows if anything comes out of this.