When I read that production on Volkswagen's iconic "magic bus" is about to cease, I thought the same thing as you: They still make the magic bus?
Well, they do in the land of bossa nova. The Type 2, as it's officially called (the Beetle being VW's Type 1) has been produced for over half a century in Brazil, where it's known as the kombi. It's managed to hang on so long due to Brazil's automotive safety laws being more lax than in the rest of the world; everyone else has foregone the kombi due to its dangerous design, which places the driver forward of the front axle. (In a head-on collision, all you've got between you and whatever you're gonna hit is sheet metal.)
With a recent revision to Brazil's safety laws, VW's plant in Sao Bernardo de Campo will shortly be ratcheting kombi production down from 250 a day to zero.
But Brasileiros still interested in acquiring the 28-horsepower beast will still have a short window in which to pick one up: VW is releasing a "Last Edition" version, in a limited run of 1,200 units. Done up in throwback style, the baby blue Last Edition will boast a two-tone paint job, whitewall tires and seating capacity for nine.
Here's a cheerfully-scored slideshow of Volkswagen Do Brasil showing the kombi and the plant in its heyday. Keep your eyes peeled for several special variants of the model, including a bookmobile and what looks like a rolling display case for tool salesmen.