Volkswagen microbus to cease production in Brazil at the end of the year.

Manufacture of the longest-produced model in the global automotive industry, the Volkswagen Type 2 Microbus, is finally coming to an end in Brazil after 56 years in production, which started in September 1957. The blue VW Kombi Last Edition you see here (click on the image above to enlarge) is one of 600 that will be produced before new safety regulations in the country force Volkswagen to phase it out.

The Last Edition will be sold only in Brazil for 85,000 Brazilian reais ($35,637) and comes with a certificate of authenticity from VW and a numbered plaque on the dashboard identifying it as one of 600. The Microbus originally came equipped with an air-cooled 1.2-liter flat-four mounted in the rear that made 28 horsepower, but by 2005 it was running with a 1.4-liter water-cooled engine. The new inline-four makes 78 hp on gasoline and 80 hp on pure ethanol and puts the power to the rear wheels – which are wrapped in whitewall tires – through a four-speed manual transmission. A 50+hp power bump sounds like fun to us!

Enhancing whatever road trips lie ahead is a specially equipped interior in blue and white vinyl, matching the unique two-tone exterior paint, and a modern MP3 sound system with USB inputs. Now, we love safety as much as the next bunch of auto enthusiasts, but we sure do wish such classically cool icons as this could somehow manage to stand the test of crash barriers as well as they can the test of time.