2013 Beetle Convertible Press Release - LA Auto Show
Los Angeles, Calif. - The latest Beetle has been an instant success for Volkswagen since it went on sale in September 2011 as a 2012 model. And that success will continue with the introduction of the Beetle Convertible, the sportiest and most dynamic version of the iconic softtop seen so far.
Ever since the type 15 Convertible from 1949, the Beetle has been one of the most popular open-top cars built. More than 330,000 examples of the first Beetle Convertible were manufactured over a 32-year span, while another 234,619 New Beetle Convertibles were produced in an eight-year period.
The New Beetle Convertible was not a straight copy of the original, but a reinterpretation and development of it. And that's the case with the third-generation Beetle Convertible. Klaus Bischoff, Head Designer, Volkswagen Brand says: "Retro is not our thing: we are always looking forward. Volkswagen has reinterpreted the Beetle Convertible's timeless design with a sportier and more dynamic silhouette, just as it did with the Beetle Coupe. The car is substantially wider, has a longer hood, and has a more upright windshield that sits further back than before. The standard rear spoiler reinforces the car's sporty look."
Beetle, Beetle TDI: Fiat 500c, Mini Cooper Convertible
Beetle turbo: Chevrolet Camaro, Ford Mustang Convertible, Mini Cooper S Convertible
Source: Volkswagen Media, media.vw.com
2013 Volkswagen Beetle Convertible 70s - Exterior and Interior Walkaround - 2012 LA Auto Show
2013 Volkswagen Beetle Convertible 70s - Exterior and Interior Walkaround -
2012 LA Auto Show
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2013 Volkswagen Beetle Convertible Review and Road Test
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Redesigning retro is a herculean task. You need to change the vehicle
enough to be worth the effort, meanwhile maintaining an iconic retro theme.
If you don't change enough, shoppers won't see a reason to trade in their
old flashback for the new time capsule. Change it too much and you're left
with a caricature. The task is so daunting that few even attempt it. (Just
look at the one-hit-wonders: PT Cruiser, HHR, SSR and Thunderbird.)VW on
the other hand is different. After all they continued to build and sell the
same Beetle with minor tweaks for 65 years straight. If anyone can tweak
retro and convince people they need it, it's VW. Sure enough, 2012 was the
best Beetle sales year since 1973. As a chaser to VW's revived retro-mojo,
the Beetle is now offered sans-top and VW tossed us the keys to a
brown-on-brown model for a week so we could get our 70s on. Can you dig it?
This Beetle, like the old "New Beetle," sells on nostalgia and
cutesy-bubbly good looks. In fact, the first words anyone utters upon
seeing a Beetle are: "aww, its cute." See the problem? How many guys buy
"cute" cars? Recognizing the problem, VW set out to "butch things up" with
the second generation FWD Beetle. The bubbly-fenders, round headlamps and
"smiling" hood lines haven't left but they have been joined by VW's
corporate "Gillette" grille, sharper corners and more "masculine" tail
lamps. (Or so I'm told.) The redesign also adds an incredible 3.5 inches to
the Bug's width and 5 inches to the length. The extra length means the
Bug's side profile is no longer semi-circular, something of a loss for
retro fans. The wider stance and crisper creases do make Herbie look
meaner, but the ginormous fenders make him look fatter as well.
Sorry '70s fans, our chocolate brown Bug didn't come with a built-in CB
radio. Burn! Instead shoppers will need to get hip with the 21st century,
VW style. Base drop-tops get an AM/FM radio, single slot CD player,
Bluetooth speaker phone/audio streaming and VW's USB/iDevice interface
(MDI). Working your way up the ladder, the next stop is the touchscreen
audio system which adds HD Radio, SiriusXM Satellite Radio and am MP3
compatible CD reader (why is there no 1990s edition?).
You won't find a air-cooled engine in this Beetle, this isn't the '50s.
Base Beetles (and the '50s and '70s edition models) use VW's refreshed 2.5L
inline 5-cylinder engine which gets a 20 HP bump to 170 at 5,700RPM while
torque creeps up to 177 lb-ft at 4,250 RPM. VW mates the 5-banger to a
5-speed manual and for an extra $1,100 you can opt for the 6-speed
automatic. If you need more shove, you can opt for VW's ubiquitous 2.0L turbo, good for 200 ponies and 207 lb-ft of
twist. A first for America (as far as I know), VW's topless cruiser can now
be had in oil-burning form with the same 140 HP 2.0L TDI powerplant as the
Jetta. Both 2.0L mills are mated to VW's slick-shifting 6-speed manual
transmission or for $1,100, VW's latest 6-speed dual-clutch DSG
How well the Beetle accelerates and handles is unlikely to matter to
prospective convertible shoppers. I'm not kidding. There isn't a drop top I
can think of that has better performance metrics than its hard-top donor
car, that's just the nature of the beast. Convertibles are all about open
air motoring and style, something thee Beetle, despite all of its flaws,
still has in spades. VW's infotainment options feel like they are stuck in
1990, the lack of power front seats and automatic climate control irk me to
no end, and the 2.0L engine needs a testosterone injection, yet the
Beetle's topless charm is enough for me to overlook its flaws. There is
only one problem: Herbie's still cute. Go figure.
Music by Kevin MacLeod
VW R Line Convertible Road Test & Review by Drivin' Ivan
Drivin' Ivan Katz reviews the 2014 VW Beetle R-Line Convertible. Check out
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VW Beetle Turbo Diesel Convertible 2013
VW Beetle turbo Diesel Convertible 2013.
Surprise! Convertible + Manual Transmission + turbo Diesel = 2013 VW Beetle Convertible! MotoMan
finds out who was behind it and how it came to the US.
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1973 Volkswagen Super Beetle (VW 1303) Start Up, Exhaust, In Depth Review, and Test Drive
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Old vs New: 2012 Volkswagen Beetle
We compare the design of the all-new 2012 Volkswagen Beetle to that of the
Shot by: Duane Sempson
Edited by: Duane Sempson
Will this bug float? You dont want to miss this next contestant try in a