VW Beetle to Chevy Volt to Ford Focus: goodbye, farewell

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The end of the year in the automotive world always marks the end of the run for a car or two and sometimes more vehicles. The end of 2018 was among the most drastic farewells to vehicles in recent years.

Manufacturers announced their departures from the car-making business to focus on sport utility vehicles and trucks. Vehicles with long histories and some that barely had time to build a sustained buying base will soon be defunct.

The 2017 Volkswagen Beetle 1.8T Convertible Dune is retro-styled to pay homage to the Dune Buggy.
2017 Volkswagen Beetle. The 2019 edition will be the last for the iconic car. Image © James Raia/2017

In all, the production of at least 14 cars has stopped or will soon cease.

The most significant departure from the new car landscape is the Volkswagen Beetle. The “people’s car,” as designated in the late 1930s in Germany, will no longer be produced after its now available 2019 model.

Volkswagen has stopped Beetle production before, but the manufacturer’s recent announcement read with a tone of finality.

Likely the least significant departure is the Chevy City Express. Its major competitor is the Ford Transit, and it’s dominated sales in recent years. Fewer than 30,000 units of Chevy City Express have sold since its debut in 2014.

Perhaps the biggest surprise the departing vehicles is the Chevy Volt. The carmaker devoted substantial marketing efforts to the plug-in hybrid that debuted in late 2010. But the Volt didn’t succeed at the carmaker hoped.

The Nissan Juke is another failure. It debuted as a 2011 model, but is another underachiever and has been replaced by the Nissan Kicks.

With General Motors closing manufacturing facilities, its brands were heavily affected.

Here’s a list of 14 vehicles set for the automotive graveyard. Hyperlinks are directed to reviews of the current model of a recent year’s review on theweeklydriver.com.

Alfa Romeo 4C coupe
Buick Lacrosse
Cadillac ATS sedan
Cadillac CT6 hybrid
Cadillac XTS
Chevy City Express
Chevy Cruze
Chevy Impala
Chevy Volt
Ford Focus
Lincoln MKT
Lincoln MKX
Nissan Juke
Volkswagen Beetle

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