Facts you didn't know about Volkswagen

+-

On May 28, 2017, the Volkswagen brand turned 80 years old. According to the website, history.com, it was established by German Chancellor Adolf Hitler to build a car that was speedy and affordable. The company was decimated during World War II, but re-established by the Allies seeking to rebuild Germany. Today it is a popular car worldwide. Volkswagen models were first been imported into New York City in 1949, and they are now among the more popular imported cars in Nassau and Suffolk Counties, according to New York vehicle registration records. Read on for more about Volkswagen, its history and sales.

Volkswagen sales in the United States

According to Volkswagen Group of America, 322,948 vehicles
(Credit: AP / Brennan Linsley)

According to Volkswagen Group of America, 322,948 vehicles were sold in the United States in 2016. Above, vehicles at a dealership in Boulder, Colo., on Aug. 2, 2016.

Popular on Long Island

According to New York Department of Motor Vehicle
(Credit: Howard Schnapp)

According to New York Department of Motor Vehicle records, there were 45,276 Volkswagens registered in Nassau and Suffolk counties as of March 2017, with the most popular model being the Jetta with 18,012. This is Sunrise Volkswagen in Lynbrook on Aug. 29, 2014.

Volkswagen Group of America dealers

Volkswagen has 652 dealer locations in all 50
(Credit: AFP / Getty Images / Paul J. Richards)

Volkswagen has 652 dealer locations in all 50 states, and sold 322,948 VWs in 2016, according to the group. It also delivered 591,100 of all of its brand vehicles to the United States that year.

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISE HERE

Not only Volkswagens

Today, the Volkswagen Group not only sells VWs,
(Credit: Getty Images / Alexander Hassenstein)

Today, the Volkswagen Group not only sells VWs, but also Audis, Bentleys, Bugattis, Lamborghinis, Porsches, SEATs and Skodas. According to Audi, there was a record of 210,213 Audis sold in the United States in 2016, and according to Bentley, there were 2,792 Bentleys sold in the Americas that year. VW also said there were 746 Bugattis and Lamborghinis sold in the United States in 2014. Above, a Lamborghini Spider, foreground, and an Audi Cabriolet Spezial 225 built in 1935 are seen at Audi headquarters in Ingolstadt, Germany, on March 10, 2009.

Volkswagen Group cars on LI

According to New York Department of Motor Vehicle
(Credit: AP / Keystone )

According to New York Department of Motor Vehicle records, there were 31,479 Audis registered in Nassau and Suffolk counties as of March 2017, with the most popular model being the A4 with 8,655. There were also 799 Bentleys registered, with 657 being the Continental, and 158 Lamborghinis, with the most popular being the Gallardo with 67. DMV records show just 2 Bugattis on Long Island.

Volkswagen Group cars popular worldwide

According to Volkswagen, 10.3 million cars were delivered
(Credit: AFP / Getty Images / Odd Andersen)

According to Volkswagen, 10.3 million cars were delivered worldwide by Volkswagen Group in 2016. In 2013, VWs made up 12.8 percent of the world's passenger car market, and nearly one out of every four cars in western Europe (24.8 percent) were made by the Volkswagen Group, according to the company. This Volkswagen dealer is in Berlin, Germany.

Volkswagen started in Nazi Germany

Volkswagen got its beginnings in Germany in 1937,
(Credit: AP / German Railroads Information Office)

Volkswagen got its beginnings in Germany in 1937, when German Chancellor Adolf Hitler commissioned what he called a people's car, capable of carrying a family of five efficiently, according to Volkswagen's United Kingdom website. Construction began in 1938 on the first Volkswagen factory in Wolfsburg, Germany, a town built for Volkswagen workers. This Beetle was photographed in August 1938. The company promised 35 mph and 60,000 miles without repairs. Estimates of its price converted from reichsmarks, range from $140 to $250 in U.S. currency.

Porsche designed

Ferdinand Porche, left, and his son Ferdinand Porsche
(Credit: AP)

Ferdinand Porche, left, and his son Ferdinand Porsche Jr., right, developed the vehicle that became the Volkswagen Beetle. Porche Jr. went on to designed race cars, and prototypes were made from 1936 to 1939, before the onset of World War II, according to Volkswagen. Porsche Jr. later founded the car brand bearing his name.

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISE HERE

World War II

The new Volkswagen factory had produced only a
(Credit: AP)

The new Volkswagen factory had produced only a modest number passenger cars when World War II began in 1939, and production shifted to making military vehicles for Germany, according to the company's United Kingdom site. The factory sustained heavy bombing from the Allies, and eventually was handed over to Britain in 1945. These German soldiers were pushing a Volkswagen out of the muck somewhere in Russia on Dec. 7, 1941.

Volkswagen arrives in the U.S.

After World War II, several automakers -- including
(Credit: AP / Carl Nesensohn)

After World War II, several automakers -- including Henry Ford II -- passed on the chance to take over Volkswagen, and the company was resurrected by the Allies. The vehicle known as Type I, which became popularly known as the Beetle, was built for Germans and exported. The first Volkswagens arrived in the United States in January 1949, when the first two arrived in New York City, according to Volkswagen's U.S. site.

Volkswagen production booms

The Beetle became one of the iconic cars
(Credit: AP / Reithausen)

The Beetle became one of the iconic cars of the world, and by the mid-1950s, there were 35,000 on the road in the United States. By 1960, there were 300,000 out on the expanding American highways, according to Volkswagen. This June 16, 1954, photo shows Beetles on the factory assembly line in Wolfsburg, West Germany. It built nearly 900 autos a day.

Beetle tops the Model T

The Beetle fit in well with the U.S.
(Credit: AP)

The Beetle fit in well with the U.S. counterculture of the 1960s, and by 1968, more than 423,000 Beetles had been sold across the nation, according to VW. By 1972, the Type 1 Beetle became the best selling car model in history, passing the Ford Model T, and selling over 15 million worldwide.

Volkswagen adapts post-Beetle

Despite the Beetle's success, it's popularity waned in
(Credit: AFP / Getty Images / Stringer)

Despite the Beetle's success, it's popularity waned in the 1970s, and the company began offering other models. While a couple of models had limited success, the Volkswagen Golf, Passat, Scirocco and Polo proved popular. This Golf was photographed on April 30, 1974, in preparation for the model's introduction in May 1974.

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISE HERE

Third-generation Beetle

Production of the first-generation Beetle stopped in 1977,
(Credit: AP / Michael Sohn)

Production of the first-generation Beetle stopped in 1977, but Volkswagen introduced a new Beetle in 1998 without the air-cooled, rear-mounted engine of its namesake. In 2011, Volkswagen brought these features back to the model, and 2 years later, it had sold 43,000 Beetles in the United States, according to VW. This new Beetle was introduced on April 18, 2011 during a news conference in Berlin, Germany.

'Herbie'

The most popular Volkswagen in film history is
(Credit: Getty Images / Christian Petersen)

The most popular Volkswagen in film history is Herbie, who was featured in the 1968 Disney film "The Love Bug." The Beetle-turned-racer appeared in six films, the most recent was "Herbie: Fully Loaded," in 2005. It starred actress Lindsay Lohan. The photo is from May 13, 2005 at the Santa Monica Pier in California.

Worldwide headquarters

Volkswagen's world headquarters remain in Wolfsburg, Germany, where
(Credit: DPA via AP / Julian Stratenschulte)

Volkswagen's world headquarters remain in Wolfsburg, Germany, where the first factory was built nearly 80 years ago. Because of its auto manufacturing, the city has among the highest incomes in Germany, according to The Local. Near the factor is the Autostadt, a museum featuring Volkswagen autos.

U.S. headquarters

In 1955, Volkswagen established its U.S. headquarters in
(Credit: AFP Getty Images / Paul J. Richards)

In 1955, Volkswagen established its U.S. headquarters in Englewood Cliffs, N.J., but the company moved its operations in 2008 to Herndon, Va., just outside of Washington. The Virginia headquarters is also the headquarters for Audi in the United States.

Volkswagen emissions cheating

In 2015, it was discovered that about 460,000
(Credit: Getty Images / Drew Angerer)

In 2015, it was discovered that about 460,000 Volkswagens in the United States with 2-liter diesel engines would comply only with emissions standards during testing, and not during the course of normal use. U.S. officials charged that the company made its clean-burning engine claims fraudulently. The 2009 through 2015 models carried software that was designed to trick computers. On Oct. 25, 2016, a federal judge approved a $15 billion court settlement, the largest auto-scandal settlement in U.S. history.

Volkswagen's new midsize SUV

Volkswagen will roll out a new midsize SUV
(Credit: AP / Julie Jacobson)

Volkswagen will roll out a new midsize SUV model in 2017, the Atlas, with the hope it will help boost its U.S. sales. The new model, which was tested in Tennessee before its unveiling, will be built at VW's plant in that state.

VW wedding

According to Volkswagen, a couple in Texas got
(Credit: Volkswagen)

According to Volkswagen, a couple in Texas got married in 2016 with a Volkswagen-themed wedding, down to having toy GTIs at the reception.

Comments

Newsday.com now uses Facebook for our comment boards. Please read our guidelines and connect your Facebook account to comment.

By using this site, you agree to our Privacy policy.

OK