Volkswagen Beetle Dune Hybrid concept, New York City, May 2015
Just a few months ago, we heard that Volkswagen was not planning to develop a successor to the current Beetle but a recent filing shows that it might have one last hurrah for 2019.
A June filing by supplier Magneti Marelli shows an instrument cluster that appears almost identical to the current Beetle cluster, but with an all new tachometer window that shows an electric charge gauge similar to the e-Golf’s cluster.
It may be an indication that Volkwagen is planning to build a hybrid Beetle similar to the concept that it showed a few years ago.
A spokesman for Volkswagen declined to comment on the filing.
Possible Beetle Hybrid gauge
Details on the potential new car are scarce, but the attachments in the filing show that Magneti Marelli submitted the information on June 14 and requested to keep a portion of the application confidential until December 14.
While the full user manual for the car is indeed confidential, they neglected to properly hide the diagram for the cluster in the public label document which displays the electric charge gauge.
The Beetle Hybrid concept was based on the 44 mpg Jetta Hybrid and its 1.4-liter gasoline engine combined with a 20-kw (27-hp) electric motor, but that car is no longer in production. This new Beetle could possibly be based on the Audi A3 e-tron that is still available. Unlike the Jetta, which was a traditional hybrid, the A3 e-tron is a plug-in hybrid which has a range of 16 miles on electric-only power. The A3 e-Tron uses a variant of the same 1.4-liter gasoline engine but coupled to a bigger 75-kw (100-hp) electric motor.
A report included in the filing shows that tests were completed on the cluster in May, which gives us some confidence that this is a product that is nearing production.
The diagrams for the cluster also show a light update for the speedometer but the rest of the cluster is generally identical to the most recent Beetle.
We will be digging further to see if this is the latest electrified Volkswagen and the last blast for the Beetle before it's exterminated.