Upcoming Volkswagen Beetle Could Return To RWD, Become Electric


Electric Bits Fit Nicely In This Custom BEV Beetle

Electric Bits Fit Nicely In This Custom BEV Beetle

One recent rumor that trickled out from the Paris Motor Show floor in September was that Volkswagen, with its next-generation Beetle, may revert back to the car’s previous rear-wheel-drive setup; and that the car could ride upon VW’s “MEB architecture,” which of course is set up to handle a BEV powertrain.

If true, then when the new Beetle launches in 2019 or so, it could well be RWD and fully electric (or at least offered in a pure electric version).

According to Green Car Reports, word of this RWD, possibly electric Beetle, comes from a “source” connected to Volkswagen. Green Car Reports states:

“Our source for this story knows who he is, but out of professional courtesy, we’ve kept his name out of this article.”

We’re not too fond of stories based upon information from unnamed sources, but Green Car Reports is generally accurate in situations such as these, so we’ll roll with it.

Green Car Reports adds:

“One of the notable, and somewhat unexpected, features of the Volkswagen I.D. was its single rear-mounted electric motor.”

“…what other well-known Volkswagen had a motor mounted in the rear, hmmmmmmmmmm?”

“The answer to that is actually a slight trick, because the answer is, “All of them until the late 1960s.”

“But the best-known is the Volkswagen Beetle, the world’s best-selling car from the early 1970s…”

A return to rear wheel drive for the Beetle might seem like a bit of a stretch, but if the idea is that it will be electric, then putting a tiny powertrain out back might actually work without cutting into cargo space.

As of right now, this is almost entirely speculation, but we’ll be sure to keep you update on the potential for a RWD, BEV Beetle.

Source: Green Car Reports

Categories: Volkswagen

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21 Comments on "Upcoming Volkswagen Beetle Could Return To RWD, Become Electric"

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Would love to see a silent version of this. I doubt VW will do it, but that will definitely put a smile on my face.


Take the new Beetle make an EV, easy and profitable.

Yeaaaaah, they’ve been saying that for YEARS.

Still waiting…

Here’s another one… 😛

It’s a Beetle, but obviously you just make up it being electric. It’s at a goddamned gas station FFS.

I actually thought the Beetle was to be discontinued after the current gen.

Make a convertible version, a range over 200+ miles, and DC-fast charging . . . a great highway 1 car.

I would trade my wife’s Fiat 500 convertible for one in a heartbeat. There are no convertible electric cars out there…

Convertible with white interior..yes!

That can’t possibly be a real ad… can it?

Don’t worry. That all happened before the internet, so it doesn’t count. 🙂

It was a real-looking but fake ad in National Lampoon.


Looking forward to it… makes the Beetle simple again… and economical.

Such a car already exists and has since 2009… The i-MiEV has more passenger and cargo space by far than even the upgraded Beetle 1302 (a.k.a. Super Beetle) of the 1970s, and it’s a RWD vehicle.
It already has acceleration in excess of the Beetle’s, although it could be improved ;-), as could the range. Top speed is about the same.

Mate, got to appreciate you love your iMiev, bit seriously you can’t keep comparing it to every vehicle out there. The beetle is an iconic car and, apart from the front engine and front drive, VW did a good job to keep it true to the original.
Not everyone wants an iMiev, no matter how good they are. I drive a Leaf, not everyone wants to drive that so I don’t bang on about it. But I do show everyone I can so they start thinking about the EV alternative, whether that is an iMiev, Leaf, Tesla, etc will be up to their preference. Or they just probably stay with their ICE.

Rear wheel drive is more fun, but a lot less efficient for EVs. This is because more of the braking and potential regen happens on the front axle. Tesla went rear wheel drive because its associated with luxury (i.e. Mercedes/BMW).

> putting a tiny powertrain out back might actually work without cutting into cargo space

What they need to do is to start using wheel motors. On all four corners. No powertrain needed. All EVs should be using wheel motors.

Also, given that everyone drives a tall MPV/crossover, that is what the new Beetle should be. After all, it is a car for the people.

Upcoming Beetle is a rumor. I don’t even believe official statements from VW.
They would shout out loud if they were to build an EV Beetle.

EV Beetle with 4 wheel motors would be mighty.