Byline: Michael Martinez
SAN JUAN DEL RIO, Mexico _ The fans of the Volkswagen Beetle who gather annually in this central Mexico city do not want to believe that the car of their dreams is coming to the end of the line. Yet by summer's end, production of the oft-revered and sometimes reviled vehicle will cease at its last assembly plant, in Mexico.
After a run of seven decades and more than 21 million cars, the rear-engine Beetle will go the way of the Ford Model T, the automotive granddaddy that the "Bug" supplanted as the world's most popular passenger vehicle.
"This car can last 10 years longer than the new cars," said Yasep Neito, 43, who like most Mexicans calls the vehicles vochos, which is a play on Volkswagen. "In a vocho, you can do everything _ from trying to make a child to taking care of business deals. And yes, I have done both."
In Mexico, aficionados in 80 clubs nationwide hold weekend festivals, such as the gathering last month in San Juan del Rio in the central state of Queretaro, about 100 miles northwest of Mexico …