Review: 2012 Volkswagen Beetle 2.5

Posted on 25. Aug, 2011 by in Auto News

"I mean, this car is dead, do not you? The only people that have bought the last 50-year-old Sally school teachers, and they are all 60 years old. There is no volume in this car. Can not volume be. Buyers are almost dead. And it is not fun to drive at all. What would you rather have this or a MINI "The guy shoot rapid-fire queries with me in the passenger seat as I drove a five-cylinder 2012 Beetle through Northern Virginia, was one of those authentic American types: the straight-shooting self-styled marketing expert. I meet a lot of SS, S-SME is on press trips, and most of them are also self-deception Fools. Not this guy. He was smart, he was articulate, and I had no easy answers to his questions.

The 2012 Beetle is (much) wider and (slightly) lower. The new styling is designed to appeal to male buyers as well as the aforementioned Sally Schoolteacher. Dynamic and functional, it is a huge step above its predecessors. If you liked the old New Beetle, then you probably really like this. The question remains: who will buy it? And why?

If ever there was a company to maintain the order liked his old platforms and / or designs, it is Volkswagen. Forget the fact that the original Type I built in one or another form of 1938 and 2003. Forget the Mk 1 Golf produced, which was still in Africa, nearly 30 years after its debut in Germany. Forget the Chinese Jetta Mk 2, which are more sold. The New Beetle itself was sold for 13 years. It was the first "A4" Volkswagen hit these shores and the last to leave, sold in showrooms side-by-side with the "A6" Jetta.

When Mark Four A platform (VWVortex.com members speak it not ironic "Emm Kay Eye Vee" in conversation), the New Beetle has been blessed and cursed by virtues and defects of this type. The interiors were fabulous, but short-lived, was the styling lasting charming but forced some unfortunate compromises seating position and interior visibility and a fireworks display of mechanical parts were committing probable suicide and / or detached from the car during the ownership experience more than a week . Let us not forget the optional 1.8t five-valve four-cylinder turbo, which was originally designed to have a little more than three quarts of oil in the pan. Ownership of the model quickly learned that it was necessary to walk back to their VW dealer service bay and personally monitor the oil change because the dealer could not bother to remember how much oil all took their cars. Otherwise, the engines do not look at them first unexpected ignition coil pack failure.

The Mk IV Volkswagen were the Amy wine houses of the German-brand whips: cheeky, sweet, sometimes stunningly competent, sometimes sexy, and ultimately self-defeating. VW knows that a whole generation of buyers were burned out of their socks from the cars, and as a result, your humble author was forced to sit and listen to an hour speech by the company bosses about all the wonderful things that have been done can buy the highest quality Volkswagen cars money. At one point, someone had the nerve to mention AutoPacific reviews.

It was a relief to get away from the briefing and meet the beetles in the metal. For the record, I like the new styling of the front and sides, but again somehow manages to look generic, particularly at a distance. The optional "legacy" alloy wheels, which have a massive polished cap and remember the original VW dog-dish hubcaps are upgraded, gorgeous. The various bugs I did not drive much attention on the street by anyone except for the occasional guy in a lowered Emm Kay IVV. Also current Beetle owners do not look twice. This can be a good thing, it certainly has not hurt MINI have the second generation of the "new" car look almost identical to its predecessor.

Inside, it's a different story. As you can see from the pictures, the painted plastic tat-to-be-metal panels are extremely convincing. I would have liked the steering wheel spokes can be real metal, for. Fingers, like Shakira's hips do not lie when it comes to distinguishing metal plastic It calls into question the rest of the illusion. Regardless, this is a very pleasant interior. With the large sun roof shade rolled back, the sun literally pours into the car, the cheerful colored trim "pops", and the feeling of well-being is overwhelming.

The riding position itself is reason enough for New Beetle owners to trade in their current car. The original "Concept 1", the New Beetle has been draped over the Polo platform. Stretching it a golf a rather strange seating / created dashboard / windshield relationship. Driving the original New Beetle is a lot like driving a GM "dustbuster" minivans. The dash stretches to the horizon in a terrifying monotony slowly depleting soft-touch plastic. It is very far from ideal, to say the least, and it is the whole of the New Beetle New Beetle is just now fixed. A steep windscreen, shorter dash and seat positioned to make the Beetle to drive normal. There is no mental attitude required if you reversed by a golf or a beetle.

Our test 2.5, the six-speed automatic, which is a conventional torque converter transmission and not a DSG. That's a good thing in my book, if Volkswagen has a proven powertrain in its current portfolio, it is likely that more prosaic 170-horse five-cylinder engine and the slushbox. Shift points are lowered for improved EPA ratings, so it's not uncommon to look down and find the Beetle loafing along at 1100 rpm on the street. This is not a car for people in a hurry.

Also, the suspension is a willing accomplice for back-street stupidity. The Beetle Turbo, the subject of a separate review will be later in the week is not bad when it is pushing at the time. The level Beetle has no such ability. It is pleasant to drive and no more. Only Corolla drivers find it "sporty". MINI drivers, as my friend suggested, will think that they can get in a Town Car.

VW announced pricing is reasonable, starting at $ 18,995. The base MINI is slightly more expensive, but the price difference widens as the order wins checked boxes. Some of the fun Beetle options: a "Kaferbach" double glove box as seen above, bi-xenon with a nice round LED strips, and a large sunroof, looking as mandatory for anyone really to be enjoying her Beetle experience.

Who is going to buy this car? I could not say. It seems unlikely that men flock to the Beetle. The original Beetle customers, as previously indicated, are not to give too much volume. The nostalgic charm has probably burned more or less by 13 years of a sometimes annoying predecessors. It's a shame, really, because this is the car the New Beetle years should have been. It is competent, enjoyable, pleasant, cute. It hits all the targets. You may not see a lot of them on the road, but I will not argue with someone who decides to put one in it – excuse me, his or her – driveway.