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Volkswagen Beetle

The roots of the iconic Volkswagen Beetle, also referred to as the Volkswagen Bug, can be traced back to 1938, though there is a clear distinction between the 'classic' or ' original' Beetle which first came off the assembly line in 1940-and the 'new' Beetle, which was introduced in America in 1998.

The original Beetle was actually the brain child of Adolf Hitler and Ferdinand Porsche. The duo wanted to produce an economical and reliable car that the working class could afford, however due to the political and social unrest of the time, very few of these unique vehicles were manufactured or sold before Germany's WWII surrender. Despite the horrible timing, the Beetle remained a topic of automotive discussion and interest in, as well as demand for the unique vehicle grew after the war ended. Mass production of the oddly shaped compact car with headlight 'eyes', an air cooled engine and unusual sound began in 1945, with the first Beetle being exported to the United States in 1949. Between the sedan version and the even more popular convertible model, Volkswagen sold 390 Beetles in the United States during 1951. Progress was slow, but intuitive advancements were steady and continued to satisfy an increasing number of motorists' world wide for many years to follow.

With a colorful history and an astonishing success rate that included production of 1.3 million Volkswagen Beetles at the height of their popularity in 1971, consumer demand for the rounded little car slowly began to decrease. The last original Beetle was sold in the United States in 1978; though sales continued in other parts of the world until the very last original Beetle was produced in July of 2003.

Meanwhile, in 1998 a whole new generation of American drivers and industry analysts who now had access to many automotive engineering and technology advancements craved the return of the Bugs unique characteristics blended with modern automotive expertise. The 'new' Beetle sedan was introduced in America for the 1998 model year and a convertible version of the 'new' Bug debuted in 2003. With its front situated water cooled engine and front wheel drive platform, the only true similarities between the original and the new Beetle was the reminiscent style and shape. Many modern amenities helped to make the 'new' Beetle a practical and reliable car for every day use that was greeted enthusiastically by a new generation of drivers.

Both the sedan and the convertible versions of the 2007 Volkswagen Beetle are powered by a 150 horsepower 2.5-liter inline five-cylinder engine. The front wheels are driven by a standard five speed manual transmission, with a six speed automatic being optional. All models are well equipped and include features such as power windows and door locks, an advanced audio system with MP3 and CD player, air conditioning, keyless entry and heated outside mirrors. Upgrade packages add comfort and convenience features such as satellite radio, heated front seats, a sunroof for the coupe and a power operated top for the convertible. Affordably priced, fuel efficient and a testament to personality and style, the 'new' Volkswagen Beetle has not yet achieved the success rate of the original, but a true comparison cannot be made for many, many years and it is off to a good start.

Volkswagen Beetle Reviews by Year

2012 Volkswagen Beetle
The Volkswagen Beetle has existed in its current form for more than a decade, now, so it's time for an update. For 2012, it gets a makeover that combines modern engine choices with a bit more retro-styling than the New Beetle has been sporting. .

When it comes onto the market this fall, buyers will notice that the 2012 Volkswagen Beetle has an exterior that combines the best of the classic and modern versions of this vehicle. The front end is evolved from the current (2010) version of the car, while the back end gives us the flatter roofline and C-pillars that arc down to the rear bumper. Combined, these changes make a big difference to this little car's appearance. .

Helping out with the change in look is a boost in size. This year's Beetle is six inches longer and more than three inches wider than its immediate predecessor. Optional exterior features include a rear spoiler, a moonroof, and 19-inch wheels, as well as a broad variety of paint colors, wraps, and even an annual "theme" model. .

The interior of the 2012 Volkswagen Beetle has been revamped, as well. more
2010 Volkswagen New Beetle
Tired of being compared to wimpy little matchbox cars in terms of safety, the 2010 Volkswagen New Beetle has been pumping iron. It's a strong and stylish 4-person transporter with undeniable worldwide appeal.
2009 Volkswagen New Beetle
The 2009 Volkswagen New Beetle will roll out as the latest version of this famed automobile. Calling it "new" doesn't really fit anymore since the car has been back in production since 1998, and hasn't had any major redesigns since then.
2008 Volkswagen Beetle
With its distinctive, even iconic, shape, the 2008 Volkswagen Beetle, like its predecessors, is instantly recognizable. This year's model, offered in two trims and a convertible version, retains many of the features from last year's edition, while sporting new names for the trim levels.
2007 Volkswagen Beetle
The 2007 Volkswagen Beetle is a 2-door coupe which seats 4 and comes in 2 trim levels, the Beetle hatchback and the Beetle convertible. The new Beetle is powered by a 2.5 liter 5-cylinder engine which develops 150 hp @5000 rpm and 170 lb.-ft.
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