Volkswagen Beetle Hybrid in the Pipeline?

The Volkswagen Beetle isn’t long for this world, but the German brand could have one last derivative planned before production ends.

A filing by supplier Magneti Marelli depicts a VW Beetle’s gauge cluster, but also includes a bar for an electric charge. Green Car Reports reported Friday the gauge is awfully similar to the e-Golf’s cluster.

The filing was made last month and Magneti Marelli requested part of the document be kept confidential until December 14 of this year. We could see a Beetle Hybrid surface for the 2019 model year as the nameplate prepares to depart. VW confirmed last March the Beetle will exit production and the reborn Microbus, based on the ID Buzz electric van concept, will serve as a retro-inspired model.

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It’s unclear what will power a potential Beetle hybrid model, but VW previously showed a Beetle Hybrid concept in 2015. The show car featured the Jetta Hybrid’s 1.4-liter engine married to a 27-horsepower electric motor. The Jetta Hybrid, however, is longer in production. No matter what technology it potentially packs, it seems awfully strange to invest in a new model ahead of the car’s death.

The Beetle nearly lived on, however. Plans were reportedly in place to move the Beetle to VW’s MEB platform for electric cars. Such a vehicle would have remade the Beetle as a rear-wheel-drive car closer to the original with an electric powertrain at the rear.

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