AUTOS: Beyond the Beetle

A year ago, West Germany's Volkswagenwerk AG was fast running out of gas. In 1974 it had lost a staggering $313 million—more than any of the world's business organizations except Britain's government-owned National Coal Board (1974 loss: $316 million). There were widespread fears that world recession would compound the troubles enough to force a government takeover. Today VW is on the road back to prosperity. It will still report a loss—perhaps $100 million to $150 million—for 1975, but almost all of that was suffered in the first half. Managing Director Toni Schmücker told TIME Correspondent Henry Muller that VW has...