Volkswagen Beetle
Volkswagen Beetle
Volkswagen Beetle

2017 Volkswagen Beetle convertible

Pros: Unique retro looks; good build quality; peppy acceleration; availability of slick, stylish convertible body style

Cons: Swoopy styling takes precedence over ergonomics; pricier than similarly equipped Golfs and Jettas; cramped back seat

CG Says: For 2017, a new Dune convertible joins the Volkswagen Beetle range. Previously, Dune was only offered as a coupe. Another new model is the #PinkBeetle. Proceeds from the limited-edition #PinkBeetle will help support breast cancer research and awareness. The R-Line convertible has been dropped. SEL models now have standard automatic climate control and parking sensors. Beetle is based on the same platform as VW’s compact Golf and Jetta, but has retro styling. We class Beetle as a Sporty/Performance Car. While Golf and Jetta can seat five passengers, the Beetle has seating for only four. All Beetles, except R-Line, are powered by a 170-horsepower turbocharged 1.8-liter four-cylinder engine that is mated to a five-speed manual or six-speed automatic. The sporty R-Line has a 210-hp turbocharged 2.0-liter four cylinder paired with a six-speed manual or six-speed automated-manual transmission. Available features include blind-spot alert, rear cross-traffic alert, and keyless entry and starting. The current-generation Beetle is just as style-driven as the New Beetle was, but it’s also more practical in everyday terms, feels more substantial, and is arguably better to drive. Trouble is, it costs a fair bit more than a comparably equipped version of the related Golf or Jetta, which offer many of the same virtues, plus far better rear-seat and cargo room. So what we have here is another nostalgia trip that makes sense if you love the styling, can accept the compromises that go with it, and are willing to pay for the privilege.

The Facts
Class Sporty/Performance Car
Body Style(s) 2-door hatchback coupe, 2-door convertible
Passenger Count 4
Drive Wheels front-wheel drive
Manufacturer Volkswagen
Nation of Manufacture Mexico
Base Prices S coupe: $19,995
S convertible: $24,725
Classic Convertible: $24,995
#PinkBeetle coupe: $21,890
#PinkBeetle convertible: $26,795
SE coupe: $22,450
SE convertible: $26,750
Dune coupe: $23,995
Dune convertible: $29,395
SEL coupe: $25,975
SEL convertible: $30,275
R-Line 2.0T coupe: $32,550

Base Engine
turbocharged 1.8-liter 4-cylinder
Std. Transmission
5-speed manual
Avail. Transmission
6-speed automatic
EPA City Range (mpg)
EPA Hwy Range (mpg)

Optional Engine
turbocharged 2.0-liter 4-cylinder (R-Line)
Std. Transmission
6-speed manual
Avail. Transmission
6-speed automated manual
EPA City Range (mpg)
EPA Hwy Range (mpg)