2016 Volkswagen Beetle Convertible Denim Edition Automatic Review – Going Retro

The 2016 Volkswagen Beetle is a limited edition Beetle convertible that supposedly echoes the Jeans edition Type 1 Beetles of the mid-1970s.Based on the previous, sixth-generation Golf’s front-drive platform with a turbocharged, water-cooled, four-cylinder mounted transversely in front, rather than the Type 1’s air-cooled flat-four mounted at the rear, the 2016 Beetle Denim is a much better car than anything built in 1975.

2016 Volkswagen Beetle Convertible Denim Edition Automatic Review - Going Retro

The 2016 Volkswagen Beetle is Cute, Quirky, and Gentle

Despite being a limited edition, Volkswagen based the 2016 Volkswagen Beetle Denim Edition from the base model Beetle convertible where you get a bare minimum interior compared to pricier trims. This could be because it is supposed to be a retro-feeling vehicle so the interior is kept simple with basic functions but more on the interior later. The Denim edition comes in two colors; white or stonewashed blue. The soft top does a great job of insulating against noise and weather, and folds with the touch of a button at speeds up to 31 mph. The Denim edition includes 17-inch aluminum wheels. Visually, it’s handsome and somewhat more masculine than the ladybug dots and daisy decals that often emblazoned 1970s Beetles. Under the hood is the Golf-sourced 1.8-liter turbo four cylinder that delivers 170hp and 184lb-ft of torque that’s available at a city-friendly 1500rpm making it quite the peppy cruiser.

You’ll not be able to get stand-alone options including navigation or HID headlights as you can in the non-Denim car. Still, the 2016 Volkswagen Beetle Denim Edition Automatic is no old-school stripper with rubber mats, hand-crank windows, and manual locks. There’s standard air conditioning; heated, power-folding exterior mirrors; heated washer nozzles; heated seats; a nice leather-wrapped steering wheel with multifunction controls; and even reading lamps. Aside from that, the sport seats that have denim-look centers, white stitching, and little red tags on the seat pockets emblazoned with Beetle logos. Trunk space is at a teensy weensy 7 cubic feet so it’s not something you’d go to Walmart in unless you’re not using the back seats.

The 2016 Volkswagen Beetle is probable the first of any Beetle convertible with the 1.8-liter turbocharged four that replaced a naturally aspirated 2.5-liter five-cylinder as the base engine two years ago. At the track, the Denim 1.8T ran 0-60 in 7.6 seconds, or 0.2 second slower than the hardtop 2016 Beetle Dune with this same powertrain. Getting to 60 mph in 7.6 seconds is more than sufficient for this car’s top-down cruising personality, and there’s plenty of poke for daily driving, with strong 30-to-50-mph acceleration for urban traffic.


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