Volkswagen Celebrates 75 Years in the U.S. with Super Bowl Ad Featuring Herbie the Love Bug

The iconic automaker takes a trip down memory lane in a nostalgic commercial during the Super Bowl

Volkswagen of America is commemorating its 75th anniversary in the United States with a highly anticipated Super Bowl ad. The 60-second commercial, titled “An American Love Story,” will air during the third quarter of the game on CBS and Univision. Directed by Lance Acord, the ad takes viewers on a nostalgic journey through Volkswagen’s history in the U.S., featuring iconic pop-culture references and the beloved Herbie the Love Bug. With a significant investment by the automaker, this ad is set to captivate audiences and celebrate Volkswagen’s enduring legacy.

A Journey Through Time

The commercial begins with black-and-white footage, transporting viewers back to Volkswagen’s arrival on American shores in 1949. As the scenes transition to color, the ad showcases various milestones in the brand’s history, including the iconic VW Bus that carried surfers and hippies in the 1960s and ’70s. The ad also highlights Volkswagen’s commitment to electric vehicles, bringing the narrative to the present day.

Herbie the Love Bug Returns

A standout moment in the commercial is the appearance of Herbie the Love Bug, a beloved character from the Disney franchise. While the 2005 Lindsay Lohan installment seems to be missing from the montage, the presence of Herbie evokes a sense of nostalgia and reminds viewers of the enduring popularity of the Volkswagen Beetle. This inclusion serves as a reminder of Volkswagen’s impact on popular culture over the past seven decades.

Pop-Culture References Galore

The commercial is a treasure trove of pop-culture references that will delight fans of all ages. A clip from The Simpsons shows Bart and Lisa playing “Punch Buggy,” a game centered on spotting the VW Type 1, affectionately known as the Beetle or the Bug, on the road. These references add depth and authenticity to the ad, connecting Volkswagen’s legacy with the broader cultural landscape.

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A Soundtrack to Remember

Set to the iconic 1971 hit “I Am… I Said” by Neil Diamond, the ad’s soundtrack enhances the emotional resonance of the commercial. The song’s lyrics, combined with the visuals, evoke a sense of nostalgia and reflect the enduring love affair between Volkswagen and its American customers. The choice of this classic track further solidifies the ad’s status as a celebration of Volkswagen’s rich history.


Volkswagen’s 75th-anniversary Super Bowl ad is a testament to the automaker’s enduring legacy in the United States. By taking viewers on a nostalgic journey through time, the commercial celebrates Volkswagen’s milestones and its impact on American culture. With the inclusion of beloved characters like Herbie the Love Bug and references to pop-culture icons, the ad strikes a chord with audiences of all generations. As Volkswagen looks towards the future of electric vehicles, this ad serves as a reminder of the brand’s storied past and its commitment to innovation.