Volkswagen Beetle
Volkswagen Beetle

Based on the iconic and classic VW Beetle which was first conceived in 1938, the New Volkswagen Beetle was introduced to the UK in Right Hand Drive format in January 2000. Launched in Europe in 1998, 900 left hand drive cars were officially imported to the UK before the Right Hand Drive launch in January 2000.

Unbelievably, ten years on from the new models introduction, little has changed and it still raises passing smiles and waves.

In September 2005 the '2006 model year' Volkswagen Beetle was given a face lift. The bumpers and wheel arches were revised giving sharper edges than before; while restyled headlights, front indicators and tail lights with white circles inside the red circles were added to freshen the appearance. The 'VW' emblems were also modified at the front and rear.

There are currently four petrol and one diesel engine available a 1.4-litre 75 PS; 1.6-litre 102 PS; 2.0-litre 115 PS; and 1.8-litre Turbo 150 PS; plus a 1.9-litre TDI 105 PS diesel. A five speed manual gearbox is available throughout the model range and the 2.0-litre petrol car is available with a six-speed automatic gearbox.

Prices when tested range from £13,065 to £18,330 for top of the range 1.8 petrol turbo. Interestingly the entry-level Volkswagen Beetle is cheaper than a Volkswagen Golf, which surprised us.

We tested the range topping New Volkswagen Beetle 1.8-litre Turbo 150ps (5 Speed Manual).

How It Drove - Performance

We tested the 1781cc, 20-valve, 4-cylinder Petrol Turbo which produces 150ps @ 5800 and delivers 160lb/ft of torque at 2000 rpm, enough to propel the Volkswagen Beetle 1.8-litre Turbo from 0-62 miles per hour in 8.7 seconds.

The engine is quite flexible; although turbo lag is present it did not really bother us - although sometimes the engine can feel a little gruff.

The five speed gearbox felt a little notchy but you do get used to it and we were always looking for a sixth gear on the motorway.

Volkswagen quote fuel consumption figures of urban 25.7 mpg, extra urban 44.1 mpg and combined 34.9 mpg. Overall we averaged around 30 mpg over a 250 mile mixed driving route; with a little bit more care we saw 34 mpg on quiet 'A' roads. Considering our route and that the engine hard barely been run in - we would consider this figure quite reasonable.

Published : 02/06/10 Author : Melanie Carter

Volkswagen Beetle News

This is a 10-year+ news article, from our Volkswagen archive, which dates back to the year 2000.

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