1960 Volkswagen Beetle original vintage ad. Why so many Volkswagens live to be 100,000. The pistons in a VW travel a shorter distance per mile than almost any other car in the world. That means less wear. Continuity in making the same basic model year after year has led to VW's quality of assembly, the kind that a $5,000 car would be proud of; to say nothing of a car that sells for $1,565.