Buy This Authentic VW Beetle Mexico City Taxi for $12,500

The history of the VW Beetle as a taxi in Mexico City is a fascinating one, and you could own a piece of it.

byLewin Day| PUBLISHED Nov 29, 2022 8:47 AM
Buy This Authentic VW Beetle Mexico City Taxi for $12,500
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If you've always wanted to own a taxi but the Crown Vic doesn't suit your style, this Volkswagen Beetle might just be the car for you.

As listed on Facebook Marketplace, the vehicle in question is a 1992 Volkswagen Beetle, used as a taxi in Mexico City. It's finished in the green and white livery of the 1990s, which the government chose to promote a cleaner image for public transport. Hence, these were commonly known as "taxis ecológicos" at the time—meaning "ecological taxis" in English. The paint change was matched with a switch to running the cabs on unleaded gasoline to help reduce pollution.

The example on sale here bears a clean Michigan title, according to the seller. Despite this, it's located in Laredo, Texas. The seller also has videos of the engine running and the car driving for interested parties.

Inside, the taxi is in good condition, with the seller claiming it has a new interior. The carpets, floor mats, and upholstery all look fresh and new, and straight out of 1992 with that gray stripey fabric. Notably, the taxi was originally built with only one front seat. This enabled easier access to the rear seats for passengers, given the Beetle's two-door design.

The ad also states that the engine has been given a refresh, too. As a 1992 build, the engine bay looks a lot more modern than traditional Beetles from the mid-century era. Perhaps most striking is the large plastic airbox on top of the engine.

The seller notes that the vehicle is a rare example of its kind. Many of the Beetle taxis of Mexico City were destroyed after they were outlawed in 2012. At the time, the government offered cash incentives to owners to turn in their cabs to be crushed. The humble Bugs, or "vochos" as they were known in Mexico, were banned due to rising crime issues. The two-door design left passengers nowhere to flee when attacked by muggers or kidnappers. This led the government to mandate all cabs to be four-door designs going forward.

While the Beetle left the United States market in 1979 and Europe in 1985, it had a much longer life internationally. It was built in Mexico right up until 2003. Later models featured refinements like front disc brakes, electronic fuel injection, and catalytic converters—technologies unheard of when the model was first developed back in the 1930s.

Priced at $12,500, this green Bug not the sort of cheap car you'd buy on a whim. However, it's probably one of the best-preserved examples of the old Mexico City cabs. The fact that it's already imported and registered in the U.S. is handy, too. Taxis do hold a certain part of their home culture in their livery and design, too. If you want to bring a little taste of Mexico City to your own neighborhood, this car could certainly do just that.

Got a tip? Let the author know: lewin@thedrive.com