2002 Volkswagen New Beetle User Reviews
- $3,217 - $4,612
- Quick, Sporty, Fun to Drive, Turbo Power
- Driver seat wear through from the inside.
Purchased As New
I was looking for a Subaru WRX when I saw this car on the Subaru/VW lot. I'd read about this particular model but had never seen one. They are pretty rare.
The Sport option included all the bells and whistles which were available at the time, such as heated leather-surface seats, power windows and automatic power moon roof, air conditioning, premium stereo w/6 disc CD, anti-lock brakes and traction control, and color keyed 17" alloy wheels with high performance tires.
What really set this car apart from the regular New Beetles was the 150 horsepower Audi-built 1.8 litre 20 valve turbocharged and intercooled engine, which also adds a trick rear spoiler that raises automatically at 45 mph. Suffice it to say this car is much quicker than it looks, or what you could call a "sleeper".
When I first bought this car I have to admit love at first sight, but it seemed I kept having annoying little problems. Everything was handled under warranty, but still it was disconcerting. Eventually everything calmed down and it's become rock sold dependable.
Perhaps the most annoying issue was the driver seat wear through from the inside. I first noticed it when it was a few weeks old but then it got worse. A quick check on line revealed this is a common problem. When I returned to the dealer they said they would replace it... only one time.
Once the bugs were handled I really began to love the car. It's a well-built car and precise steering, high power stereo and form fitting seats make it a pleasure to drive in any kind of weather. The Anti-lock brakes and traction control make driving in snow and ice a no-brainer.
It's not fast off the line but it's amazingly long legged for highway cruising. A jab of the throttle at 80 mph can have you well north of 100 mph and climbing in a hurry. Not surprising when a quick look under the gas cap shows tire pressure recommendations for sustained speeds less than and over 100 mph. The ECU limits the top speed to 135 mph. If the sun roof is popped up, in vent mode, it automatically closes at 85 mph.
At 50,000 miles the OE Michelin Pilots were wearing thin so I replaced them with a set of Bridgestone RE 960 AS. If I would have known how awesome those tires were in the snow and rain I would have replaced the Michelins way before then.
After 9 years and over 80,000 miles it's still a rock solid performer. The RE 960s still look like new and though the 80,000 warranty service was a bit pricey, it provided a vast improvement in mileage.
I just bought a new Lincoln MKZ, loaded with AWD, but I'm having a problem finding a reason to part with my New Beetle Sport....read morehide
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- Timeless shape,durable materials used, makes the driver feel good
- Dash board too deep, inadequite rear headroom, rear seat does not split
Purchased As Used
When the California designers came out with the New Beetle in the mid 90s, their intention was to have a diesel/hybrid drivetrain that did not take up alot of space. Well guess what happened? VW was inlove with the public response to the prototype and agreed to go into production but then got greedy. They took away the rear engine RWD layout and left it with Porsche, then took a shoe horn to make the front engine FWD drivetrain fit. The retro results are ugly. Just look at that dashboard. Where have you seen anything like that before? Then there's the back seat that was pushed back so far that anyone over 5 foot 3 is going to be bumping their head against the hatchback frame.
Look at the old beetle. There was a huge amount head room and the there was a compartment behind the rear seat.
If Ralph Nader killed a rear engine RWD car in the usa, how did the beetle and the Porsche 911 manage to stay on?
And why didn't both rear engine/RWD cars stay rear engine/RWD?...read morehide
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- Too much fun to drive!! (It's not a bug if it's not a stick shift!)
- A little too much like a real car. I wish it was smaller like my original bug.
Purchased As New
Great car! Minimal maintenance, excellent handling, great gas mileage. The turbo is not required - this car books! Everyone wants to ride with YOU.
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