Although the Golf is the best-selling Volkswagen… …they have just one car that’s truly an icon; the Beetle. It’s got a long history, the first one was built in 1938. They continued building it for dozens of years. At the end of the 90s, VW revived it with the New Beetle. After 13 years, it’s time for its successor. It’s simply called: Beetle. The New Beetle certainly wasn’t a failure, but it quite was a specific car. You either liked it or not. In my eyes it was a car for museum directors with corduroy pants and tweed jackets. And besides that it was mainly a women’s car. You couldn’t separate the front from the back, so to speak. It was also very round and comical, it wasn’t very manly. With this third generation, VW want to give this car back to men. It should be masculine again. Women have stolen enough from us with their feminism and rose beer.Men are back in the game and you can see that in this car’s styling. It’s lower, it’s longer, it’s wider. It looks more aggressive, it’s got nice wide hips. It’s refreshing to see that in these times where everything has to be economical and green… …VW aren’t positioning this car as an eco wonder. Of course, the press release is full of claims that it’s up to 34% more economical. That’s not very hard when you have to replace a car that’s over 10 years old. But they haven’t done everything they could’ve to get it super economical. There’s no start-stop system, the DSG gearbox has 6 gears and not 7. In true VW spirit the Beetle is only available with turbo engines.There are 3 petrol engines and one diesel. We’re driving the top of the range model; the 2-liter TSI with a 6-speed DSG gearbox. To make the Beetle modern but still retro… …the designers have incorporated lots of references to the past. I’ll highlight three of them. Firstly, it’s got two glove boxes… …and one of the hinges upwards, just like in the original Beetle. Secondly. The 18 inch alloy wheels aren’t very retro… …but this one’s got wheel covers. So you have big alloys with covers to make them more playful. And thirdly, I could be wrong… …but I think they’ve tried to replicate the boxer engine sound. Especially at low rpm it roars in a way… …that I don’t recognize from identical 2-liter VW engines. If you look under the hood… There it goes. You can see the TSI engine, but that’s not the first thing you notice. It looks like santa’s been round to gift-wrap the battery. It’s
wrapped in I don’t know what. I hope they can tell me why they’ve done that.I think VW is spreading its chances with this car. They aim for men while they know the women fans will stick around. It’s priced very competitively, you can drive a Beatle for less than 20 grand. And its shape is really better than before. So I certainly think it’ll beat its predecessor’s success. .