Volkswagen (New?) Beetle Review

After 10 years, Volkswagen is still calling it the New Beetle. Apparently, it will go out that way, because next year, there will be a new New Beetle...probably a 2011 model.

So should you wait? My knee-jerk reaction would normally be to say yes...but after a refresher in the existing Beetle, I'm not so sure.

18 months or more ago, I'd have written the Beetle off as tired and way overdue to be put out to pasture. But I drove one recently with the new realities firmly in my brain and you know what?

It's got a lot going for it.

I mean, just look at the basics: $18,540 base price...20 mpg city, 29 highway. Yes, the Jetta and Golf (a previous generation of which the Beetle is based on) are a few hundred dollars cheaper and get an extra mile per gallon or so, but the incredible feeling of space inside the Beetle (thanks to that arching roofline) is hard to beat.

If you're looking for unassuming, economical transportation without feeling cramped and invisible, the Beetle may be exactly the right call.