Mike West Road Test: VW Beetle 50’s Edition

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The 2013 Volkswagen Beetle 50’s Edition: Modern Fun In A Retro Package

The 2013 black on black Beetle 50’s edition convertible was delivered to me at a perfect time. I had just taken delivery of this beauty from the 50’s, so I was feeling pretty nostalgic, even though I was born when this machine came off the assembly line.

This is a modern car based on the brilliant Jetta, but somehow Volkswagen has captured the decade wonderfully. The 50’s version comes exclusively in black, with beige sport seats that are very supportive and comfortable for a long drive. The wheels are super cool brushed chrome exterior mirror caps and side mirrors.

It never fails. Someone always stops you in a modern Beetle and asks if the engine is still in the back. For the record, no. It’s in the front and it’s a far cry from the technology of old.

This is a 2.5-liter five-cylinder engine that makes 170 horsepower. Nothing special, but I never felt like I was driving a gutless car, even with the extra weight because of the stiffening and mechanicals it takes to make a ragtop. You can go for a six-speed manual, or a six speed automatic with manual shift mode.

Engine: 

2.5L I-5

Power: 

170 @ 5,700 rpm

Transmission: 

6-spd auto w/OD
or 6-spd manual
0-60

: 8.2 seconds

Drivetrain

: front-wheel

Seating: 

4 passengers
MPG: 



21 City / 27 HWY

I have to give props to the convertible top. It is made from three layers on the out side and a three-layer insulation-and-headliner piece on the inside. We drove a windy stretch of road in the eastern part of Washington State at speeds in excess of 70 miles per hour. You don’t hear a lick of wind noise or buffeting. Pretty impressive.

Speaking of the highway, you will average 28 miles, and in the city about 21. Not great mileage these days.

My tester came with a standard radio and Bluetooth, which is located in funny place. Up here, rather than the normal down here.

Price as tested $26,095.

On the fun scale I rate this Beetle a 9. Same for practicality. And if your looking for a car that gets a lot of stares and thumbs up, well you can’t go wrong with the 2013 Beatle convertible.

-Mike West, CBS Seattle

(TM and © Copyright 2013 CBS Radio Inc. and its relevant subsidiaries. CBS RADIO and EYE Logo TM and Copyright 2012 CBS Broadcasting Inc. Used under license. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.)

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