It seems all car models are having an eco-bug as of late. The latest is the new VW Beetle which is due to be launched this summer and has not only had a revamp in the styling department, it is follows the other VW models by having ultra-economical engines, low fuel consumption and low emissions. Suggested prices vary between £12,255 and £17,580.
The new ‘Bug’ has taken styling cues from the Scirocco, with a flatter roof-line, wider and more square-stance, and looks stockier and more masculine than before. The original Beetle looks are still there but are more 21st century now. With the model being made for 73 years, it’s about time for another revamp and this one really looks like it’s onto something.
The new Beetle was shown off to the press at the Shanghai Motor Show and the new dimensions were available for everyone to see the differences. The second generation Beetle was very bubble-like in appearance, which has now been squashed by reducing the height of the roof by 12mm, it’s 84mm wider, 152mm longer and its wheelbase and track are also increased. The result is a four-square stance that looks a little more aggressive than the ‘pretty’ second generation Beetle, and with more room for the occupants it’s more versatile.
The new VW Beetle windscreen has been pushed back and the rear of the car is more like the original Beetle. There are many more interior styling cues that hark back to the original too, such as the myriad of soft hues – and the glove-box is also more similar to the 1938 car.
The lengthened wheelbase has allowed more room for the occupants but also more room for their luggage, with a boot space that has 101-litres more than before (310-litres plays 209-litres). The rear seats split and folds too, which is handy for carrying more items in the back compared to before, as the second-generation Beetle was fairly unpractical.
Onto the eco-engines: one diesel – the 105PS 1.6-litre; and three petrol engines are available – 2.0-litre 200PS TSI, 1.4 160PS TSI, and the hugely frugal 1.2-litre 105PS TSI. With Formula 1 technology filtering down to road cars, there are battery regeneration systems available now that help offset the energy used. There is a Stop-Start technology, which shuts down the engine at traffic lights and therefore doesn’t emit any exhaust fumes at a standstill. These energy-saving and eco-friendly options combine to give a CO2 output of just 112g/km and 65.7mpg.
It’s also been designed to be one of the safest cars on the road, on its launch, with laser-welded chassis and a galvanised body, as well as having six air-bags and ESP as standard. A range of options will be available as well, such as a panoramic sunroof, LED daytime running lights, a satellite navigation system and keyless access, which are all the rage at the moment.
Let’s see if the new eco-Bug can still capture the market more than 70 years on and add to the 21.5 million that have been sold since its inception.