Over the years, the design of the Volkswagen Beetle has evolved from its functionality-driven origins to the irrepressibly cheerful face of the previous-generation New Beetle. Now the folks at VW have dropped the “New” in the car’s name and given this latest-generation Beetle a more aggressive look. But it’s still unmistakably a Beetle.
Contributing to its more masculine stance is a body that’s longer, lower and wider. Inside, the friendly flower vase is gone and the distant windshield and resulting massive dash top have been replaced by a more vertical windshield and a color-keyed dash that’s more handsome than cute. The increased dimensions also give this Beetle a roomier interior, especially in the backseat. Its underpinnings, which are shared with the latest Golf, make it more fun to drive than you might expect, especially in the Turbo and TDI models. Put it all together and you have a very enjoyable and distinctive small car.