If you've ever wanted to flag down one of Mexico City's classic Volkswagen Bug taxis, you'd better book your travel now. The last of the iconic cabs will be decommissioned by the end of the year, according to the Associated Press.

VW hasn't built the classic Beetle since 2003, the same year that Mexico City began requiring that taxi operators switch to four-door vehicles. The last Bugs that entered service as cabs back in 2002 have already been given two extra years of service compared to most taxis, according to the report.

The cabs are considered particularly dangerous, not just because they are essentially 74-year-old cars, but also because cab drivers generally remove the front passenger seat to facilitate access to the cramped rear quarters of the Beetle. But the cars are cheap to operate and according to one former Mexico City cabbie, help make the streets safer.

"Today the cars are bigger, and they drive faster," Vera Perez told the AP, "Before, they drove more cautiously, because any accident would destroy them."


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    • 1 Second Ago
  • 22 Comments
      ike1979
      • 2 Years Ago
      --"Today the cars are bigger, and they drive faster," Vera Perez told the AP, "Before, they drove more cautiously, because any accident would destroy them." Ha...wow...that's hilarious. I've ridden in these cabs before...there was no "cautious" driving observed on my part. Perhaps this is a frame of reference thing...
      Leather Bear
      • 2 Years Ago
      "The cabs are considered particularly dangerous, not just because they are essentially 74-year-old cars, but also because cab drivers generally remove the front passenger seat to facilitate access to the cramped rear quarters..." It's been more than 30 years since I was last in Mexico City. Back then, Type 1 taxis were the norm, not the exception. The front passenger seat was not "generally" removed but was ALWAYS removed, not only to allow easy access to the back seat (open door, step in, pivot, plant butt on back seat) but to leave a convenient spot for parking any packages or luggage next to the driver (luggage space was very tight in the front trunk or behind the back seat of a Bug).
      dukeisduke
      • 2 Years Ago
      "Cramped rear quarters"? Thanks to the tall roof, the backseat accommodations are fairly roomy, for two people anyway. Those alloy wheels on the bug in the left lane look pretty cool. I wonder if those are VW, or off of something else?
        JayP
        • 2 Years Ago
        @dukeisduke
        Those are factory alloys. There's a new-old bug around here with the same set up. Or hubcaps... been since last fall since I saw it.
        187fl
        • 2 Years Ago
        @dukeisduke
        They remind me of the rally wheels of chevy muscles cars, pretty cool!
      Pat
      • 2 Years Ago
      Folks ... do yourself a favour and read the source article. Looks like the AB author just copy pasted a few paragraphs to create this post. Some great details are lost.
      ksrcm
      • 2 Years Ago
      "Today the cars are bigger, and they drive faster," Vera Perez told the AP, "Before, they drove more cautiously, because any accident would destroy them." Thank you so much, Mr. Perez. Now we might have found the explanation for a huge dip in traffic fatalities in U.S. for years 2009 and 2010. Big years for sales driven by downsizing (Cash for Clunkers & gas prices) Yet, just wait for the next one to come here and scream "Da*n Gubmint! Little cars will kill us all!".
      Basil Exposition
      • 2 Years Ago
      These old bugs are infinitely cooler than the new ones.
      desinerd1
      • 2 Years Ago
      that bright green color distracts from the ugliness of VW beetle very effectively.
        BG
        • 2 Years Ago
        @desinerd1
        Right, like a modern bloated crossover thing is more attractive.
          M
          • 2 Years Ago
          @BG
          Haha, sweet :)
      Toneron
      • 2 Years Ago
      Most dangerous part about cabs in Mexico City? Getting kidnapped, robbed or otherwise assaulted. Much less probability of getting killed in a crash on a city street.
      RocketJohn5
      • 2 Years Ago
      Mexico, The New Cuba!
      Basil Exposition
      • 2 Years Ago
      Why is a law required to dictate the number of doors required? Why can't we just let the market decide the number of doors?
      levbros
      • 2 Years Ago
      I think its a national treasure. But out with the old, in with new. Living in Mexico City (http://www.mexicocityvibes.com/life-in-mexico-city ) you really don't know what's around the corner and this place is developing relatively fast.
      LoneWolf
      • 2 Years Ago
      "Before, they drove more cautiously, because any accident would destroy them." Wow, what a logic!
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