2012-2019
2012 Redesign Year
The 2012 redesigned Beetle has fewer compromises and a roomier cabin. It drives decently but suffers from cost-cutting measures.
While the ride is compliant, it's a bit unsettled. Handling is responsive but not sporty, and it becomes sloppy in demanding conditions. The standard five-cylinder engine is punchy but sounds gruff and unrefined. We got a less-than-stellar 26 mpg overall with the five-speed manual transmission. Turbocharged gas and diesel 2.0-liter engines are also available. Rear visibility is limited and the long clutch pedal travel and wide center console compromise the driving position.
$17,825 - $23,175
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$16,100 - $22,150
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$13,675 - $20,500
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$12,000 - $21,100
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$9,875 - $15,925
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$8,000 - $13,050
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$7,200 - $11,125
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$6,350 - $7,775
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1998-2010
The New Beetle is a modern hatchback that bears a nostalgic family resemblance to the VW "Bug." In our tests, we found the car's ride to be good and its handling nimble. The 2.0-liter four-cylinder accelerates adequately but was noisy.
A more economical diesel is also offered. The front seats are firm and supportive. The rear is cramped, though the seats fold for increased cargo space. The New Beetle has performed notably well in front crash tests but poorly in side tests. A quicker turbocharged model was added for 1999 and a convertible joined the line for 2003. A five-cylinder engine replaced the four-cylinder for 2006, and the turbocharged engine was dropped in 2007.
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