Volkswagen is a German automaker founded in 1937 by the German Labor Front in Berlin and a brand of Volkswagen Group, which in 2016 and 2017 scored the highest sales in the industry. China is the primary market for the brand with 40% of the purchases made there. The company has approximately 117,400 employees. When first appeared on the market their cars were luxury and hard to afford. As a solution, smaller cars were produced such as Kommissbrot, Tatra T77, and Voksauto. Adolf Hitler also intervenes to help with a savings plan. Three hundred thirty-six thousand people choose to participate, but in the end, the idea is unsuccessful. In 1938 is introduced KdF-Wagen with an air-cooled rear-mounted flat-four engine and later renamed to Volkswagenwerk GmbH and Beetle today. After extended testing, finally the car becomes legalized, and a factory opens in Wolfsburg.
No cars have sold during the war. Because of the war, the pressure is put on the company and vehicles for the military are produced such as Type 82 Kubelwagen and amphibious Schwimmwagen. Approximately 15,000 slaves were employed during the war for cheap labor. In 1945 the factory KdF-Stadt was being bombarded, captured from the Americans and passed to the British due to its famousness for military vehicles production. Until 1946, 1000 cars are being produced per month. The cars name is changed to Volkswagen, and the output increased. The factory was offered to America, Australia, Great Britain, and France, but get rejected from all the countries because they considered the cars unattractive, ugly and noisy. In 1948 Ford also refused the offered company saying it is not worth the time. In 1948, Heinrich Nordhoff who was a senior manager at Opel was hired to run the factory. In 1949 VW sold two vehicles in the USA.
The production of Volkswagen Type 1 Beetle increased and reached one million vehicles in 1955. In 1952 twelve cars were exported to Canada. In 1959 a production facility was set in Brazil. Where the company is accused of spying which results in tortures and arrests in 1976. In 1960 the company name was changed to Volkswagen Werk AG. A better advertisement by a New York's agency is applied, and the Beetle got popularity and outsold Ford Model T with approximately fifteen million cars sold in 1972.
In 1961 Beetle Type 1 had 1200 cc 36 hp four-cylinder air-cooled flat-four OHV engine made of alloy. In 1966 the engine was improved to 1300cc, 1500 in 1967 and 1600 in 1970. Air-cooled engines are removed from the USA to Mexico, because of the high carbon emissions. The car was famous as a car for the beach and a buggy on the West Coast. In 1961 Type 3 is introduced consisting of Karmann Ghia, Notchback, Fastback, and Variant. In 1969 Type 4 is added, differentiating a lot from the previous vehicles, with fully automatic transmission and electronic fuel injection. A Super Beetle is launched in 1971 with a MacPherson strut front suspension, curved windshield and rack, and pinion steering and increased luggage place.
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