The history of this famous automobile brand dates back to the mid-1930s. According to legend, it all began in the autumn of 1933, when in an informal setting of the hotel room there was a meeting between Ferdinand Porsche and Adolf Hitler. The latter was interested in creating a small car that could accommodate a family of two adults and three children, and even accelerate to 100 km / h, consuming no more than 8 liters per 100 km. An important requirement was affordable value, which would be affordable for any self-respecting burgher. Porsche by that time had already become famous as an excellent designer, so it's no surprise that the solution to this problem was offered to him. According to the same legend, Hitler demanded that the new car be easily converted for military use - three soldiers and a machine gun should be placed. In those years in Germany everything was built with this condition; for example, when creating merchant ships, already at the design stage, the goal was to provide an opportunity for easy conversion to an auxiliary cruiser.
It was decided to name the new brand "The People's Car" - "Volks-Wagen". One of Hitler's promises was to put behind the wheel all the German families.
The first time Porsche managed to provide in January 1934. Then they had already developed the general concepts of the new car. The project was approved by the Reich Chancellery, which allocated for its implementation the necessary amount of Reichsmark, provided that a working prototype will appear by the end of 1934. But these plans were not meant to come true - it took a long two years to implement the project. When the necessary prototypes were ready, the process of their thorough testing began. The claims were put forward toughest, but the cars proved their suitability for transportation of representatives of the Aryan nation. In 1937, the first VW30 appeared, already ready for mass production. The car made a real sensation at all the exhibitions where it was presented. Journalists immediately dubbed him "Beetle" - this name will remain with him forever. However, Hitler himself referred to this creation of KdF-Wagen, in honor of the Nazi organization Kraft durch Freude ("The Power Through Joy"), which dealt with improving leisure and everyday life of the population.
In 1938 the construction of Volkswagen plants began. Built in a big way - around the factory premises was even laid a new city, called Wolfsburg (Wolfsburg). In it and to this day is the head office of the Volkswagen Group. The price for the new car was set at 990 Reichsmarks - less than the average worker received for the year.
Mass production of KdF-Wagen began in 1939, several dozen copies were produced. But the war that began, crossed out all plans and plants of Volkswagen, urgently switched to the production of military products of all-wheel drive amphibians Kübelwagen, which were actively used by Wehrmacht troops. At the factories of the company in those years worked prisoners of war, forced into forced labor. In the future, in 1998 Volkswagen management officially recognizes this fact and starts paying compensation - 2050 people from all over the world were involved in this action.
After the defeat of Germany in the Second World War, the Volkswagen factories retreated to the British. They carefully studied the "Beetle", but were not particularly interested. So the production of it, although it was restored, provided only the needs of burghers. A miniature and inexpensive car was an ideal solution for a war-ravaged country. In 1949 Volkswagen returned to the Germans. The company is named Volkswagen-Finanzierungs-Gesellschaft GmbH.
For its postwar history, this company became famous not only for the "Beetle", which sold around the world in millions of copies, but also by many other extremely popular models of various classes and types. What are only the models like Golf, Polo, Passat, Bora, Touareg, Tiguan ... By the way, talking about the company's interesting past, you can not fail to mention the minibus Volkswagen Bulli ("Bull"), better known as the "hippie van" - this model forced other manufacturers to take another look at cars of this class. Bulli became the progenitor of the now popular Transporter.
As for the legendary "Beetle", this model was produced by Volkswagen for a long 25 years. After that, its production was moved to Latin America. It seems that this car would be popular in Europe to this day. But the Germans were forced to stop its production, as the model ceased to comply with strict European safety standards and the level of environmental pollution. In 1998, the Germans tried to revive the legend by introducing the Beetle II model - a front-wheel drive car, outwardly and in size reminiscent of the classic "Beetle". But the novelty did not even close to repeat the success of its predecessor (much better with the reincarnation of the classics it turned out at the company BMW with its new Mini).
To date, the Volkswagen Group is a large concern that owns many world-famous brands: Volkswagen itself, as well as Audi, Skoda, SEAT, Porshe, Bentley. Belong to the Rolls-Royce, do not remove it, literally from under the nose, in 1998, BMW.
The headquarters of the Volkswagen Group, as already mentioned above, is still in Wolfsburg. The concern's factories are scattered in 15 countries around the world.