Volkswagen Beetle

Browse pages
Current page

1

Current page

2

Current page

3

Current page

4

Current page

5

Current page

6

Current page

7

Current page

8

Current page

9

Current page

10

Current page

11

Current page

12

Current page

13

Current page

14

Current page

15

Current page

16

Current page

17

Current page

18

Current page

19

Current page

20

Current page

21

Current page

22

Current page

23

Current page

24

Current page

25

Current page

26

Current page

27

Current page

28

Current page

29

Current page

30

Current page

31

Current page

32

Current page

33

Current page

34

Current page

35

Current page

36

Current page

37

Current page

38

Current page

39

Current page

40

Current page

41

Current page

42

Current page

43

Current page

44

Current page

45

Current page

46

Current page

47

Current page

48

Current page

49

Current page

50

Current page

51

Current page

52

Current page

53

Current page

54

Current page

55

Current page

56

Current page

57

Current page

58

Current page

59

Current page

60

Current page

61

Current page

62

Current page

63

Current page

64

Current page

65

Current page

66

Current page

67

Current page

68

Current page

69

Current page

70

Current page

71

Current page

72

Current page

73

Current page

74

Current page

75

Current page

76

Current page

77

Current page

78

Current page

79

Current page

80

Current page

81

Current page

82

Current page

83

Current page

84

Current page

85

Current page

86

Current page

87

Current page

88

Current page

89

Current page

90

Current page

91

Current page

92

Current page

93

Current page

94

Current page

95

Current page

96

Current page

97

Current page

98

Current page

99

Current page

100

Current page

101

Current page

102

Current page

103

Current page

104

Current page

105

Current page

106

Current page

107

Current page

108

Current page

109

Current page

110

Current page

111

Current page

112

Current page

113

Current page

114

Current page

115

Current page

116

Current page

117

Current page

118

Current page

119

Current page

120

Current page

121

Current page

122

Current page

123

Current page

124

Current page

125

Current page

126

Current page

127

Current page

128

Current page

129

Current page

130

Current page

131

Current page

132

Current page

133

Current page

134

Current page

135

Current page

136

Current page

137

Current page

138

Current page

139

Current page

140

Current page

141

Current page

142

Current page

143

Current page

144

Current page

145

Current page

146

Current page

147

Current page

148

Current page

149

Current page

150

Current page

151

Current page

152

Current page

153

Current page

154

Current page

155

Current page

156

Current page

157

Current page

158

Current page

159

Current page

160

Current page

161

Current page

162

Current page

163

Current page

164

Current page

165

Current page

166

Current page

167

Current page

168

Current page

169

Current page

170

Current page

171

Current page

172

I was fascInated to discover that the new Volkswagen Beetle, while perhaps not quite so terrible as its predecessor, is still by a comfortable margin the worst car VW makes.

We’re only in the spring but it’s still the worst car I’ve driven this year. My interest springs from two sources. first I wonder if being useless is part of Beetle DNA. The original was a terrible car with no performance, no brakes, no anything of much use in fact, save sadly indestructible build quality which meant they lasted forever. When VW decided to revive the name in 1998 it was obvious it could not build a car that was so thoroughly lousy again, so instead it designed one so boring that the only thing more likely to send you to sleep was having a piano dropped on your head.

Is it really a coincidence that the new Beetle follows in these traditions?

But the other reason I’m fascinated by this Beetle is that I really didn’t know that Volkswagen in 2012 still knew how to build cars like this. From the company responsible for the class-leading Up!, Polo and Golf comes a car lacking not only any charm but, more shockingly still, any trace of its stable-mates’ abilities.

To be fair it’s not disastrous in any speciic way, but that’s hardly a recommendation. The Beetle feels slow, has mediocre handling, poor ride quality and a shape optimised for providing discomfort to those travelling in the back.

The question is, why is it this way? I am quite confident that it is not because it’s the best Volkswagen can do. You only have to look at other models it makes for similar money to know that. Which leaves the slightly sour-tasting suspicion that the Beetle has been made to be only as good as it needs to be.

Let’s face it, this is not a car that’s going to be bought by serious drivers. nor, I would venture, anyone with even a passing interest in how well a car gets from one place to the next. It is a car bought for its looks alone and in the presumption that the customer will care little or less about anything else. But I still think VW could, and should, have tried a little harder with it. as it stands it appears to be taking advantage of a fashion victim clientèle, which, for a company capable of scaling death-defying heights of engineering excellence, is perhaps a little inelegant.

FACTFILE
ENGINE: 1.4 litres, four cylinders, petrol
TOP SPEED: 129mph
PRICE: £19,470
POWER: 156bhp at 5800rpm
FUEL/CO2: 42.8mpg, 153g/km
www.volkswagen.co.uk

Andrew Frankel