At Volkswagen’s 2017 Annual Session, the subject of replacing models was discussed, during which the future of the Beetle – which is built on an old platform – and the Scirocco was raised.
Volkswagen brand board member Arno Antlitz responded, saying: “The Beetle and Scirocco are representatives of an emotional and appealing class of vehicles, but it [VW product planning] is not always about continuing cars from one generation to the next.” It's only the hardtop Beetle that's expected to get the axe; the convertible outsells it considerably, and remains the only convertible in the VW lineup following the axing of the Golf Cabrio last year.
The Beetle is one of VW’s slowest-selling cars across its range, shifting 25,127 in both bodystyles across 2016. The Scirocco sold less than half; with 10,752 finding homes in 2016. The two models’ combined 2016 sales were topped by those of the Golf in January 2017 alone.
Given that Volkswagen’s cost-cutting measures are spreading to its more central operations following a restructuring of the group’s motorsport activities, axing the slow-selling Beetle and Scirocco would make sense, despite the brand’s stated aim of offering products with more emotional appeal.
Antlitz said the upcoming ID electric models, as well as existing new models such as the Arteon luxury saloon, would fill the emotional void left by the departure of the Beetle and Scirocco.