German carmaker Volkswagen has decided to pull the plug on its iconic model Beetle and sedan Jetta in India. Citing a raft of reasons, the Indian arm of Volkswagen has confirmed the development. Both models are no longer listed on the website of the company.
Poor sales of both the Beetle and the Jetta stand out as a talking point, but the fact that these models sold in India are not based on the new platform as their counterparts in the global market could also have prompted the company to drop the curtains on the models in India.
As history notes, Volkswagen Jetta and Beetle were launched in India in 2015. The models sold in India were based on the outdated PQ35 platform while those driving into the international markets were firmly anchored on the latest MQB platform.
The future of the Beetle, also known as a "Bug car," has been murky for the past couple of months in Indian as well as global markets. Poor sales and a change in Volkswagen's strategy have left the Beetle hanging on by a thread. Sales of the model were also put on hold in India for a while.
Jetta, on the other hand, had not been able to make inroads into the Indian market after being pitted against established rivals like Hyundai Elantra and Skoda Octavia.
With no major updates forthcoming, the future of the sedan was all but sealed. It is not clear yet whether the Jetta will be revived in India, given that the company is gearing up to update the model in the international market.
As for the "people's car," as the Beetle is called, the company is reportedly planning an eco-friendly electric version that could hit the market by early 2019.
With India marching towards the dream of going all-electric in the foreseeable future, whether Volkswagen brings back these models to the domestic market is a wait-and-watch scenario.