The Volkswagen Beetle, officially the Volkswagen Type 1, informally in German the Käfer (meaning "beetle"), in parts of the English-speaking world the Bug, and known by many other nicknames in other languages—is a two-door, rear-engine economy car, intended for five occupants (later, beetles were only allowed for four people in some countries), that was manufactured and marketed by German automaker Volkswagen (VW) from 1938 until 2003.
Although designed in the 1930s, the Beetle was only produced in significant numbers starting from 1945 (civilian production had been put on hold during the Second World War), when the model was internally designated the Volkswagen Type 1, and marketed simply as the Volkswagen (or "People's Car"). Later models were designated Volkswagen 1200, 1300, 1500, 1302, or 1303, the former three indicating engine displacement, the latter two derived from the type number.
Over time a trend towards front-wheel drive would come to dominate the European small-car market. In 1974, Volkswagen's own front-wheel drive Golf model succeeded the Beetle. In 1994, Volkswagen unveiled the Concept One, a "retro"-themed concept car with a resemblance to the original Beetle, and in 1998 introduced the "New Beetle", built on the contemporary Golf platform with styling recalling the original Type 1. It remained in production through 2010, and was succeeded in 2011 by the more aggressively styled Beetle (A5), which was also more reminiscent of the original Beetle.
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