It’s official: The 2019 Volkswagen Beetle will be the last production year of the iconic Volkswagen Beetle, exactly seven decades after it first came to the United States in 1949. But the Beetle will be getting a year-long sendoff, beginning with special Beetle Final Edition models for 2019 and continuing over the next several months. “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. “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 it. “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.’ We’re excited to kick off a year of celebrating one of the true icons of the automotive world, with a series of events that will culminate in the end of production in Puebla in July 2019.” The 2003 Beetle Última Edición The Beetle Final Edition coupe and convertible sports two unique colors that echo the beige and light blue colors chosen for the end of the first-generation Beetle production in 2003. Stonewashed Blue was last seen on the 2016 Beetle Denim, and hearkens to the 1970 Jeans Bug, while Safari Uni is a new variant of the Harvest Beige color last seen on the New Beetle that was built until 2011. For those whose color choices run to more standard options, there are also shades of white, black and grey, while the convertible has an optional brown top. The Final Edition also has unique wheels, either a 17-inch aluminum alloy with a 15-spoke pattern or an 18-inch alloy “disc” design with white trim, similar to the body-color wheels of original-generation Beetles. Among many other touches, all Beetle Final Edition models offer available driver-assistance technology. SE models include standard Blind Spot Monitor Rear Traffic Alert. Final Edition SEL models add standard front and rear Park Distance Control, and like all Beetles, the Final Edition uses the sporty 174-hp 2.0-liter TSI® engine, paired with a six-speed automatic transmission. Before next July, Volkswagen will have several additional events to mark the heritage and history of its original model. We’ll share our moments online under the hashtag #byebyeBeetle. “The Beetle is more than a car,” says Woebcken, “it’s what made Volkswagen an integral part of American culture.” of
Autumn brings a welcoming committee that goes above and beyond: cooler temperatures, cozy coffee flavors — and most notably, a landscape of fiery foliage. Whether you love leaves, festivals, or simply carving a VW-themed pumpkin, here’s how to make the most of fall. 1. First stop: foliage As the days shorten, summer’s brilliant green leaves can’t survive the transition: They lose chlorophyll and transform into a showstopping combo of reds, yellows, and oranges. Check the fall foliage map for detailed predictions, but find some of these great highlights across the U.S. Northeast Color may show up at the beginning of September, but the beginning of October is the likely peak. By mid- to late-October, the majority of the region may already have passed the prime leaf-viewing time. Road trip in your VW to: Vermont’s Green Mountain Byway for 11 tree-filled miles through two state forests and three state parks. The northern endpoint is Stowe, known as Fall’s Color Capital. Midwest The northern parts of Minnesota, Wisconsin, and Michigan may see changes in early September, but they’ll probably peak early October. The rest of the region peaks at the end of the month. Road trip in your VW to: Michigan’s Upper Peninsula, which boasts more than 20 forested state parks and a vast array of tree species. Southeast With the exception of the Appalachian mountains (higher elevation cause leaves to change sooner), the best showing is likely late October into November. Road trip in your VW to: The Great Smoky Mountains National Park, home to more than 100 native tree species and 800 miles of roads and trails. You’ll probably see the best color in early October. Southwest New Mexico may be a mix of gorgeous hues in early October, while its neighbors catch up toward the end of the month. In early November, central and coastal Texas may peak. Road trip in your VW to: Taos, New Mexico, the start and end point for the 83-mile Enchanted Circle. The loop showcases yellow and dark orange aspens, purple cinquefoil, and red cottonwoods. West The Rocky Mountain Range is one of the first spots in the U.S. to flaunt fall color, with some change in early September. Peak is probably around the beginning of October, when the rest of the region just starts to turn. California may not see much until the end of October. Road trip in your VW to: Oregon’s 80-mile Columbia River Gorge to see a mix of firs, cottonwoods, maples, Oregon ash, and twisted pines. 2. Next stop: food, fun, and festivals It doesn’t matter why or where, there are plenty of memory-worthy to-dos that should pack your list. They include: Food: Visit a local orchard or pumpkin patch. You’ll likely find everything from corn mazes to carriage rides, as well as homegrown produce. Check your state’s tourism or travel department, which may have a full list of attractions. Fun: Host your own backyard fall feast — roasted marshmallows, soup swaps, and cider bars are just a few options. If the weather is warm enough, project a movie from your smartphone outside (a clean exterior garage wall works as a screen, and you can find low-cost projectors at most chain stores), pass around popcorn, and hand out movie-favorite treats for a drive-in done at home. Festivals: Swing by one of these standouts (or make a bucket list-plan for a fall-worthy road trip — it’s never too early to plan for next year). Remember: State tourism or travel departments often publicize lists of statewide events such as these. Autumn at the Arboretum Dallas, Texas, September 22–November 21 Pumpkin Village boasts 90,000+ pumpkins, squash, and gourds; 4,500 chrysanthemums and 150,000 fall plants are also on display. Leavenworth’s Autumn Leaf Festival Leavenworth, Washington, September 29–30 The main event in this Bavarian-themed town’s annual street celebration is the grand parade featuring floats decked in fall foliage. St. Charles Scarecrow Fest St. Charles, Illinois, October 5–7 All you’d expect from a fall festival — crafts, carnival rides, music, and kids’ activities — is centered around more than 100 handmade and mechanical scarecrows. Cranberry Harvest Celebration Wareham, Massachusetts, October 6–7 Cranberry harvesting? Yes, please. Includes cooking demos and bog wading. National Apple Harvest Festival Biglerville, Pennsylvania, October 6–7 and 13–14 It’s like a state fair packed into two weekends. N.C. Pecan Harvest Festival Whiteville, North Carolina, November 3 Whiteville is one of the state’s top pecan producing areas, and the town celebrates with parades, music, arts and crafts, and treats. 3. Last stop: autumn decorating, VW style Craft-lovers and craft novices alike: Get out your carving tools for these VW-themed pumpkin designs — one the instantly recognizable VW logo and front grille, the other the distinctive front of the beloved VW bus. Download VW Bus Template Download VW Grille Template Try these carving tips to help: Use painter’s tape to hold the stencil in place, and a washable marker to trace the outlines. For both stencils, carve the cut-out sections (those that are black on the PDF) first. Once you’ve carved those pieces, leave them place; this helps maintain pumpkin strength while you scrape away other sections. Scraped-away but not completely carved through sections are tricky. Start by using an x-acto knife to lightly trace the stencil outline. Then use a small sanding or linoleum carving tool to remove the topmost layers of the real or fake pumpkins.
First: It is the official position of Volkswagen of America that no one should throw or receive a punch (or even a tap for that matter) simply upon seeing a Volkswagen Beetle. Volkswagen does not condone any form of violence, especially over an icon of the peace-and-love era like the Beetle. That said, it is well known that generations of bored American children on the road have invented and handed down a game around the Beetle. But there’s also a lingering debate that has never been settled: What do you call it – slug bug, or punch buggy? It turns out the answer may say more about where you grew up than anything else. No one may ever know how this bit of childhood came into existence. The Volkswagen Beetle first arrived in the United States in 1949, but it wasn’t until the mid-‘50s that the Beetle became more common, standing out on the new interstate system like a UFO among the more typically massive, squared-off sedans and wagons. After extensive research, we were unable to find someone claiming to be the first to play the game. But we did unearth what may be the first published reference to it, from the May 6, 1964 edition of the Arizona Republic, where a columnist wrote a question-and-answer with his daughter, who tells him “I think the slug bugs are cute.” There’s a bit of etymology to back up “slug bug” as the first name of the contest: Sports writers had used “slug bugs” as shorthand for boxing fans since the 1920s. It would take another 14 years for the first published reference to “punch buggy” to find its way into print — in 1978, in Florida. Today, we have a few more tools to measure how often people use a word, and by those yardsticks, the two terms have roughly equal audiences on search engines and in social media. But our analysis did find something unusual in where those names pop up: “punch buggy” is the term most often used on the coasts, while “slug bug” is more predominant in the Midwest and southern states. Whatever you call it, we’d say again that when you see a Beetle on the road today, hitting someone is never the right response. Try hugs, not slugs.
Nina Roedeler found her calling thanks to a hurricane. In late 2012, hundreds of animals were lost or displaced after Hurricane Sandy hit the New York metro region – either from flooded shelters or being left behind when their owners had to evacuate. Roedeler, a New York resident, volunteered to foster one of the dogs left traumatized by the storm, eventually bringing it back to health and a new permanent home. “I love dogs, because they know how to forgive and they don’t hold grudges,” Roedeler says. That experience led Roedeler to her role as rescue coordinator for Friends with Four Paws, an Oklahoma-based nonprofit that finds new families for dogs with few options left. For about 20 to 30 dogs a month, Roedeler holds adoption events and coordinates the trip around the New York area from foster pet keepers to forever families. Roedeler says she and the adoption team will support new owners with advice and answering any questions they may have, but would-be owners first need to show they’re ready to provide a new dog with one essential need: love. “I’m looking for a match for the dog and human alike,” Roedeler says. “We try to match up the needs of the dog with the adopters to ensure a great start into their new life together. But as every dog is different and situations are different, there needs to be chemistry.” That job means she needs to rack up major miles on the rough roads around the New York-New Jersey-Connecticut region, and do so with enough space to keep her dog passengers comfortable and calm. After starting out at Friends with Four Paws with a 2012 Volkswagen Tiguan, Roedeler upgraded to a 2018 Volkswagen Atlas – what Roedeler calls her “mobile storage unit for the rescue and my mobile office.”1 After nearly five years and hundreds of dogs in good new homes, Roedeler says it’s hard for her to imagine a better way to bring people and dogs together. “I have a blessed life. It’s my job to make families happy and to make dogs happy,” she says. “Uniting a dog with a family is almost like playing Santa Claus.”
Just after college, Douglas Sonders traded his classic convertible sports car for some professional-level digital camera equipment gear to document a tour with a rock band. It’s a gamble that’s still paying off today. From his days on a tour bus, Sonders’ award-winning career as a photographer and filmmaker now spans everything from celebrity magazine-cover portraits to industrial applications for virtual reality. But it was a new challenge to take a Volkswagen Arteon, the striking new flagship that goes on sale late this year, and apply his creativity. The results: a dramatic and beautiful photo series unveiled recently at the Petersen Museum in Los Angeles. “I’ve never had a car company just toss me the keys to a pre-production car and give me carte blanche,” says Sonders. Working with models Shelby Bay and Krislian Rodriguez, along with a Phase One XF IQ3 100MP camera, Sonders crafted a series of images with the Arteon as a central feature. The look was designed to evoke the early techno era of the 1980s and some of its influences in modern life, with sharp-angled slices of color and clothing playing off the Arteon’s curves. (The LED-lit room was also an inspiration for a certain moody superhero’s lab.) “I loved this space, and thought the symmetry and drama of the ceiling with the dark background worked well,” Sonders said. The photos didn’t just hang statically. Visitors to the unveiling were able to try out an interactive augmented reality experience through an app Sonders and his company, eXpanded eXistence, developed. Each photograph would trigger a pre-programmed interactive 3D visuals that would emanate from a given print. “All of it eventually ties back to how we look at the world. I love the idea of exploring different platforms and technologies to give viewers a unique perspective towards a concept. I loved being able to incorporate my love for photography, film, and augmented reality into one campaign,” he says. Learn more about the VW Arteon. of
Ten years ago, Volkswagen made it official: It wanted to build one of the world’s most advanced automotive assembly factories in the hills outside Chattanooga, Tennessee. Since then, a series of successful milestones — from the 700,000th Passat to the new expansion for the growing Atlas line — have demonstrated how VW and Chattanooga continue to build a partnership for the future. The initial VW investment of approximately $1 billion in Chattanooga and the commitment to hire 2,000 team members has grown to more than $2.3 billion and 3,500 jobs and the assembly of nearly 800,000 vehicles. “Volkswagen Chattanooga’s success is important to the overall strategy of the Volkswagen Group,” says Antonio Pinto, president and CEO of Volkswagen Chattanooga. “Reaching this milestone has only been possible through the contributions of each of our 3,500 team members and through collaboration with the city of Chattanooga, Hamilton County, and the state of Tennessee. We look forward to many more years filled with growth and progress.” From award-winning vehicles to standout education programs to sustainability efforts, Volkswagen Chattanooga’s presence goes well beyond the walls of the world’s first LEED Platinum-certified automotive factory. Celebrating 10 years in Chattanooga
Tech has turned our cars into more than just a way to get from point A to point B. Take the features that are part of Volkswagen Car-Net®: They enable you to access navigation information, receive alerts, and manage entertainment, among other capabilities Now, there’s even more to love about Car-Net®. Three new features — Parking Information1(powered by Parkopedia), Valet Alert,2 and Curfew Alert,2 — provide valuable peace of mind and convenience. The new trio is part of the Security & Service3 umbrella of the Volkswagen Car-Net® app. That includes Safe & Secure features such as Automatic Crash Notification,4 Roadside Assistance,5 and Manual Emergency Call.4 Whether you’re thinking about an upgrade to a newer VW, haven’t updated your VW Car-Net® app in a while, or just want to get the most out of this cool new tech, here’s what you need to know. Help park your VW How many times have you driven around a busy block searching for an open parking space? You’re not alone: Each year, the average driver wastes approximately 17 hours searching for parking. That’s a lot of hours you could be spending reading, walking, or working — or just doing nothing. The Parking Information2 feature, powered by Parkopedia,helps drivers locate off-street parking, either nearby or at an intended destination. By clicking on a specific location, drivers can access a parking spot address, hours of operation, and pricing. Then, with a simple tap on the “Send to My VW” button, the Car-Net® feature (if equipped) automatically sends directions to your VW navigation system. Help keep track of your VW Ever turned your keys over to a valet with just a little bit of hesitation? The new Valet Alert2 feature can help. Once activated, this new feature notifies owners if their vehicle is driven more than 0.2 miles from the last parked location. These alerts can be sent via text, email, or both — and can easily be turned on or turned off in the Vehicle Options menu in the VW Car-Net® app. Help set a curfew for your VW The challenges of driving at night are different than the challenges of driving during the day — for everyone. But according to a recent study, nighttime driving can be more than twice as dangerous for teens as driving during the day, which is why Curfew Alert2 may be a welcome addition for families with new drivers. Curfew Alert2 allows parents to set a curfew for when a vehicle can be driven. If the car is taken out after curfew, the owner can receive both an email and a text message alert. Get with the Net Customers who purchase new Volkswagen models equipped with Car-Net® Security & Service3 receive a free six-month trial subscription — and can extend the service afterward by purchasing a month-to-month subscription or a long-term package. Subscribers can access a host of helpful features, including Manual Emergency Call4 and Vehicle Health Reports.8 To begin a trial, drivers can push the “i-Button” in the cabin of their equipped vehicle, which will initiate a call to a customer specialist. If you are an existing Car-Net® Security and Service3 user, simply update your app. For more information, please consult your dealer, call (877) 820-2290, or visit VW.com/carnet. Don’t have Car-Net®? These Security & Service3 features — just a few of the possibilities — may convince you. 1. Set speed, curfew, valet, and boundary alerts2 2. Alert our agents with Automatic Crash Notification4 3. Get assistance with Manual Emergency Call4 and Roadside Assistance5 4. Lock and unlock doors, honk the horn, and flash the lights — remotely — with Remote Vehicle Access6 5. Find out where your car is parked with Last Parked Location7