Fun Volkswagen Facts
Volkswagen means "people's car" in German.
VW is the largest automaker in Germany and Europe.
Volkswagen was founded in 1937.
Volkswagen started as an effort by Adolf Hitler and the Nazi party to make a "people's car" that anyone could afford. At the time, few Germans had automobiles because of the high cost, and an effort was made to develop an affordable vehicle the German masses could buy with small payments. World War II interrupted development and delivery of any cars as production facilities were re-routed for military use.
Company headquarters is in Wolfsburg, Germany.
Most of VW's workforce during World War II was forced labor to build military vehicles.
After World War II Volkswagen's production facilities were offered to US car manufacturers, including Ford, for free. All passed due to the immense war damage.
Shortly after World War II the new West German government assumed control of the manufacturing equipment and plants and began building VW Beetles based on the people's car envisioned by Hitler.
Volkswagen of America was created in 1955 to handle strong demand in the US for the inexpensive Beetle cars.
By 1972 more then 15 million VW Beetles had been sold, making it the most popular vehicle ever sold in the world. The product number passed the previous best selling Ford Model-T.
The Volkswagen Group operates the following vehicle brands:
AudiVW also owns a substantial interest in Suzuki.
The local German government still owns one-fifth of the company.
China is now the Volkswagen Group's largest market.
Porsche is VW's largest stockholder.
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