The Iconic Beetle for 2007

By: Anthony Fontanelle

In 1938, the German car manufacturer Volkswagen introduced the world to the economy car that will later on become an icon in the auto industry. Throughout the years, the Beetle, or the Bug, has been accepted warmly by car buyers. Its maker, to further increase the popularity of the Beetle, improved its features and its looks in a couple small ways. In 1998, Volkswagen introduced the New Beetle which is the direct descendant of the famed Beetle of old. For the 2007 model year, the German car manufacturer markets the New Beetle as a convertible or a hatchback. Of the two, the open top body style seems to be the one attracting more attention from onlookers and car buyers alike.

Since it comes from the classic Beetle, the New Beetle with its roof up closely resembles the Volkswagen Beetle from decades past. With the roof stowed away, the New Beetle looks better according to auto critics. The convertible is seen by the German car manufacturer as one of their vehicles that is destined to help increase their popularity in the United States and thereby increasing their sales. For this year, Volkswagen announced that they are aiming to sell at least 30,000 units of the vehicle.

The New Beetle is powered by a 2.0-liter four-cylinder engine which can produce 115 horsepower which is enough to drive this small car for ordinary driving operations. The power from the engine is transferred to the drive wheels via a five-speed manual transmission which comes with the base model. A six-speed automatic transmission is also offered for the 2007 model year. While for some, the power produced by the engine is a bit short and so Volkswagen announced that they will be coming up with a new turbocharged engine for the New Beetle convertible which will be able to provide as much as 150 horsepower.

In terms of handling, Volkswagen designed the New Beetle to be strong so as to resist the cowl shake which is common on convertibles. The reinforced pillars, floor, doors, and other components reduce the risk of rollovers. The reinforcement of these components is complemented by the suspension setting of the vehicle which gives it good handling and stability. As far as the interior is concerned, the and dashboard gives the convertible a sense of class. Its roof can be lowered with ease, thanks to an optional electrohydraulic system. By twisting a handle and pushing a button, the roof can be lowered. A vinyl boot is available with the convertible - this is used to cover the roof stack.

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