Volkswagen AG is ending worldwide production of its iconic Beetle, the model once so popular in North America that it prompted the German automaker to build its first factory on the continent in the 1960s.
Passenger auto sales have been plunging in the U.S.in recent years as American preferences shift to larger vehicles.
Volkswagen has confirmed that production of its Beetle will come to an end in 2019 - but insisted it would "never say never" about a return for the iconic model.
Even though it looks as though the Beetle as we know it is coming to the end of its time, it's hard to imagine this being the end of the Beetle name in the Volkswagen portfolio for good.
In a statement, Volkswagen Group of America CEO Hinrich J. Woebcken said the Beetle had to make way as the automaker moves to become a "full-line, family-focused automaker" while also focusing on an "electrification strategy".
Sales of the carmaker's reboot of the "people's car" have fallen dramatically in the US, where drivers are increasingly turning to larger cars and SUVs, and away from the modern version of the quirky vehicle that once starred as Disney's Herbie the 1963 "Love Bug".
Volkswagen Beetle began its journey in 1938 and since then the company has sold more than 33 million units around the world. Actor Arshad Warsi also owns a Beetle.
Volkswagen sold a total of 11,151 Beetles in the United States through the first eight months of 2018, down 2.2 per cent from the same period a year earlier.
Volkswagen revived it in 1998 as a more modern "New Beetle", attracting mainly female buyers.
The company is not leaving behind all of its well-known older models.
Despite the car's cultural credentials, sales have fallen in recent years, particularly in the key United States market, as consumers turn increasingly to larger cars and sports vehicles.
But Mr Woebcken didn't completely rule out that the model could one day be resurrected: "Never say never".
Dubbed the "Final Edition SE" and "Final Edition SEL", it will be available in either coupe or convertible body styles and will come with exclusive equipment and unique décor styling elements.