The 2010 Volkswagen appeal appeals to shoppers who like standing out from the crowd and have a soft spot for retro styling. The Beetle is loved for its cutesy and unique exterior styling.
At 20/29 mpg city/highway, its fuel economy ratings are some of the lowest among affordable small cars. Trunk space is also minimal and the rear seat isn’t comfortable. If you’re in the front it’s OK, thanks to a soft ride and typically supportive Volkswagen seats. In the back the rounded roof does you in.
The engine revs smoothly and pulls well, though it’s hardly sporty. Suspension tuning is on the soft side. The Beetle has 1.4-litre, 1.6-litre and 2.0-litre petrol engines, plus a punchy 1.8-litre turbo petrol at the head of the range. And a Diesel engine with a 1.9-litre turbodiesel.
The New Beetle comes with alloy wheels, air-conditioning, heated front seats, cruise control, a tilt/telescoping steering wheel and a CD/MP3 audio system with satellite radio. Options include bigger wheels and a rear spoiler. Transmission choices are a standard five-speed manual or an optional six-speed automatic.
The Beetle interior quality is still up there with the best. The plastics in the cabin are uniformly excellent. That curvy roof, which seems to go from nose to tail in one sweep, has drawbacks for the driver. Firstly, you can’t see the car’s extremities. Secondly, it imposes a deep dash, so you feel like you’re sitting miles away from the windscreen; plus, visibility is poor and the driving position not great. Those interested in the convertible should be aware that rearview visibility is poor with the top up or down. Still, single stylish fascia and instrument pod looks good.
It comes with stability control to keep you on the straight, VW Beetle equiped with a bunch of airbags to help keep you safe. Other safety featurs includes an immobiliser, deadlocks and an alarm.