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Here's an analysis of New Beetle production since 1997:

Sales of the New Beetle sedan have fallen every year since its peak in 1999, although the trend is slowing slightly with 34,485 units produced in 2005; an 8 per cent drop compared with the previous year.

It's a similar story with the New Beetle convertible, with sales gradually declining since its first full year of production in 2003.

Total New Beetle production to the end of calendar year 2005 stands at 891,159 units. It can be predicted that at current production rates, the 1 millionth New Beetle will roll off the line sometime in the summer of 2007, which will happily coincide with the model's 10th anniversary. With an original planned lifespan of seven years and continuously eroding sales
figures, it remains to be seen if it will still be in production at that time.

I've compiled production figures below, and calculated the percentage change year on year.

Beetle production figures:

New Beetle sedan:

1997 - 415 (Production commenced July 1997)
1998 - 107,090
1999 - 160,147 (+49%)
2000 - 149,426 (- 6.7%)
2001 - 115,851 (-22.4%)
2002 - 94,428 (-18.49%)
2003 - 50,318 (- 46.6%)
2004 - 38,847 (- 22.8)
2005 - 35,485 (- 8.6)

Total to end of 2005: 752,009 units

======================

New Beetle convertible:

2002 - 7,072
2003 - 60,276 (+ 752%)
2004 - 41,271 (- 31.5%)
2005 - 30,531 (- 26%)

Total to end of 2005: 139,150 units

Production figures from Volkswagen AG Annual Reports 1997 - 2005

As far as sales go for 2006, there have been 7,091 New Beetles sold in the US thru March 31st (3,883 sedans and 3,208 convertibles) compared with 7,081 sold thru March 31st of 2005.
 

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Porkchop said:
My question is this: Why did they bother doing a redesign at all? Did they expect a big sales jump because of it? I'm doubting they would predict a return to the 100,000+ sales regardless of an update. So why did they spend the money?
I don't think they were expecting a jump back to the 100,000+ mark. They were probably just trying to keep interest up.

This wasn't a compete redesing. It's basically just new bumpers/fenders, and a new engine (one that already exists). Just fitting it into the Beetle.

I would assume cost of this freshing was at a minimal.
 

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Hell, dropping in an A-Platform engine (2.5L), adding new lights, fenders, and bumper covers, gauge cluster, dash trim, wheels (which seems to be bi-yearly anyway)... that's small potatoes in comparison to a whole redesign.

I mean, the Mk4 Jetta picked up new rear lights, gauges, bumper trim (w/ chrome), trunk lid, and a few nominal pieces in its last two years (2004,5).

-Des
 

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Deserion said:
Hell, dropping in an A-Platform engine (2.5L), adding new lights, fenders, and bumper covers, gauge cluster, dash trim, wheels (which seems to be bi-yearly anyway)... that's small potatoes in comparison to a whole redesign.

I mean, the Mk4 Jetta picked up new rear lights, gauges, bumper trim (w/ chrome), trunk lid, and a few nominal pieces in its last two years (2004,5).

-Des
Des, I never knew about the trunk lid change, pretty interesting indeed:




SMG
 

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Well, intro of the retro New Beetle style was intended to bring customers back into VW dealers showroom and it did exactly that. VWs sales figures had been moribund for several years. The NB almost never happened because Wolfsburg had (and still has ) some high and mighty image of itself (note: the Phaeton). They just can't seem to walk anymore (i.e.: put successive steps together). It seems that they will never understand the American image of their company and it's product line. And it's all our fault. Arrogant company...
 

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Alan Margosian said:
Well, intro of the retro New Beetle style was intended to bring customers back into VW dealers showroom and it did exactly that. VWs sales figures had been moribund for several years. The NB almost never happened because Wolfsburg had (and still has ) some high and mighty image of itself (note: the Phaeton). They just can't seem to walk anymore (i.e.: put successive steps together). It seems that they will never understand the American image of their company and it's product line. And it's all our fault. Arrogant company...
Arrogant, maybe. No, they don't listen to their customers, which is a sin, but they can't understand the American market from way over in Europe any better than an American auto company can understand the European market. The only way VW will succeed in the USA is if they do something similar to how Brazil and many other countries operate, designing and building models based on the needs of the people in that country.

I just hope Canada keeps getting the European cars, I like them more than the fugliness that VW Brazil has to offer.
 

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SMG said:
Wow, those figures are really dramatic..

I think despite the update, sales won't return to even a 2002 level.

They are not quite as dramatic as you think. He separated the New Beetle and New Beetle Convertible into two separate categories. That's not really an accurate representation. They are the same car. When the convertible was introduced many people simply chose that configuration. It's still in a decline though. I'd expect 2006 to show a decent boost thanks to the modest redesign.


1997 - 415
1998 - 107,090
1999 - 160,147
2000 - 149,426
2001 - 115,851
2002 - 101,500
2003 - 110,594
2004 - 80,118
2005 - 66,016

By the way, VW continued to sell the Old Beetle for almost a decade with less than 45,000 made each year and less than 27,000 for the last 3 years of it's life ending in 2004. Now let's see production numbers for the Golf/GTI/R32 and see how it compares.
 

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Concept1 said:
Now let's see production numbers for the Golf/GTI/R32 and see how it compares.
The Beetle doesn't even come close to comparing to the sales of the Golf/GTI/R32. The US is really the only country that the Beetle sells well in. The Gold, on the other hand, while it doesn't do so hot here in the states, in other countries, it's HUGE.

The Golf is VW's biggest selling car world wide. The New Beetle production figures are nothing compared to that of the Golf.
 

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pdoel said:
The Beetle doesn't even come close to comparing to the sales of the Golf/GTI/R32. The US is really the only country that the Beetle sells well in. The Gold, on the other hand, while it doesn't do so hot here in the states, in other countries, it's HUGE.

The Golf is VW's biggest selling car world wide. The New Beetle production figures are nothing compared to that of the Golf.
Yeah but in the US the New Beetle sells rather well. Recent figures show it selling better than the Golf/GTI/R32 in fact. I would love to see figures going back a few years to see if that's just a recent phenomenon. I see no reason to discontinue it if sales are better than the Golf.
 

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Porkchop said:
This is one of the problem with the nostalgia craze. Once the sight of a nostalgia design becomes common, it loses the novelty that created the initial sales boom.

Ford has already said they'll have to do something completely different with the Mustang in a few years.

My question is this: Why did they bother doing a redesign at all? Did they expect a big sales jump because of it? I'm doubting they would predict a return to the 100,000+ sales regardless of an update. So why did they spend the money?
Good point. But, to me, a 21 year old snot nose kid... this car is not nostalgic for me. It's just bad ass. It represents happiness and fun and independence... not what I did in the 70's. I hate to see the Beetle not selling as well, but I'm sure the same can be said for most other cars out there. It also means that the older Bugs have held up well. And the economy has been sh!t since 2001.
 

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SMG said:
Post the recent figures if that's what they say.
Posted in another thread :

For the year 2005, there were 36,339 New Beetles sold in the United States. In 2005, there were 15,690 Golf/GTI/R32's sold. New Beetles outsold Golfs in 2005 by more than 2 to 1.

To place NB sales in context, VW sold 104,063 Jettas, 49,233 Passats, and 18,050 Touregs in the United States in 2005.
though the numbers quoted don't mesh with BUGSTUFF's numbers... so who knows.

I don't think anyone is surprised that NB sales have declined since it's introduction. And I think you'd have a hard time finding any automobile whose sales didn't decline since it's introduction. By VW's own statements, sales for the NB were "wild" in 1999... meaning "not normal". A considerable amount of the decline is simply the model rebalancing to a "normal" average.
 

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JohnnyJet said:
What about the turbo s production numbers
Those would be part of the hard top production figures. They didn't break it out by model.

But I believe they kept the quantity in line with the other, more limited edition models. Maybe 2,000 a year? Maybe a few more?
 

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Steinola said:
Posted in another thread :



though the numbers quoted don't mesh with BUGSTUFF's numbers... so who knows.

I don't think anyone is surprised that NB sales have declined since it's introduction. And I think you'd have a hard time finding any automobile whose sales didn't decline since it's introduction. By VW's own statements, sales for the NB were "wild" in 1999... meaning "not normal". A considerable amount of the decline is simply the model rebalancing to a "normal" average.
And I believe the difference is that the numbers I quoted on the other thread are U.S. sales, where BUGSTUFF's number's are worldwide.
 
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