I bought my red 1999 GLS 5-speed used with 17,000 miles on it. The car
has been nothing but reliable. I now have over 61,000 miles on it and it
continues to drive and run flawlessly. Nothing has broken on it other than
two headlights. The bulbs cost about $7.00 and are easy to replace once
you figure out what you're doing. Everything works, none of the switches
have fallen out or broken and the power windows work just fine. The air
conditioning works great. I guess some cars are lemons, but mine has been
every bit as reliable as my wife's Honda Civic (she sold the Honda and
bought a Cabrio).
Solid build quality, good gas mileage, great handling and braking, great
stereo and CD system, cool alloy wheels. It's fun to have other Beetle
owners wave and smile, and to watch siblings pummel each other (in a game
of slug bug) when you drive by.
Either Americans drink too much, or the German engineers don't drink
enough. In either case, someone in Germany got it wrong when they
designed the cup holders to hold only 12 oz cans.