Dub-Werks, Quarry Garage, Boosebeck Road, Skelton Green, Cleveland, TS12 2DG
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Ferdinand Porsche

1931 Porsche Type 12

1933 Tatra V570

1939 VW Beetle

1 millionth Beetle produced

1949 Volkswagen Type 1

A History of Volkswagen

The Beetle

It’s easy to forget just how far back the history of this iconic car goes.  Ferdinand Porsche envisioned an affordable, reliable and simple car for the masses which first took shape as the Porsche Type 12 in 1931, thought to be influenced by the design of the Austrian Tatra. The distinctive shape can clearly be seen in these early cars which also share the air cooled rear engine design.

After successful road testing of several prototypes and with the enthusiastic backing of Adolf Hitler the opening of the first factory took place in 1938 and with it the official launch of the Beetle.

The Beetle has changed very little in appearance over the years from 1938 to the last car to be manufactured in 2003. The first obvious difference being the change from a small split rear window to the more familiar larger single window in 1957.

Sales of the Beetle continued to grow and boomed in the 1960’s due to some clever advertising campaigns. By 1972 the Beetle overtook the Ford Model T as the most popular car ever made when No. 15,007,034 was produced.

In later years demand declined. Annual production dropped to 30,000 in 2003 from a high of 1.3 million cars in 1971. The last Beetle, No. 21,529,464 rolled off the production line in the Mexican Factory in Puebla on 30th July 2003, 65 years after it’s original launch.

The Beetle is the longest running and most manufactured automobile of a single design platform anywhere in the world.

The Transporter

The Transporter or Volkswagen Type 2 is the official name of the Bus or Camper. Introduced in 1950 it has appeared in several forms:

 

Volkswagen Samba Bus

1966 Volkswagen Kombi

1961 pickup truck

Another example of a pickup

Pre-facelift (left) and Face lifted (right)

Volkswagen Kombi

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