2003 Volkswagen New Beetle GL Consumer Reviews | Edmunds
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2003 Volkswagen New-beetle - Consumer Reviews

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204 Total Reviews

2003 New Beetle Consumer Reviews

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Fastest Bug Ever Made (STOCK)
Performance
Comfort
Fuel Economy
Fun To Drive
Interior Design
Exterior Design
Build Quality
Reliability
By captbill
on

Vehicle

2003 Volkswagen New Beetle Turbo S 2dr Hatchback (1.8L 4cyl Turbo 6M)


Review

This is one of the most fun, sportiest, fastest little speed demons on the road today. It is 6 speeds of pure driving pleasure. Mine has every option that you could have on a little machine from heated leather seats to heated mirrors. This machine rocks! I LOVE IT! Volkswagen outdone themselves on this little baby. The way every window and sunroof closes at 85 to keep you safe and aerodynamic is amazing.


Favorite Features

The heated seats, heated mirrors, cruise, 6 disc changer and tape deck, front and rear fog lights, sunroof, 6-speed, automatic wing, plus a lot more!


Suggested Improvements

Make the fuel economy a little better! Add an in dash CD changer.


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Poor Craftsmanship, Gas Mileage, and Reliability
Performance
Comfort
Fuel Economy
Fun To Drive
Interior Design
Exterior Design
Build Quality
Reliability
By DJBoca
on

Vehicle

2003 Volkswagen New Beetle GLS 2dr Convertible (2.0L 4cyl 5M)


Review

This car looks nice, rides nice, but then things start to break. I've replaced the convertible top, driver's door, key cylinder, all the window motors, various sensors in the engine, and the convertible flaps. So much goes wrong. I'm in a love / hate relationship with this thing. I love to drive it and I love the windshield angle / distance, but hate the constant breakdowns. A door replacement took three weeks to fix. This car is not worth it. Find something else.


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Poor Milage
Performance
Comfort
Fuel Economy
Fun To Drive
Interior Design
Exterior Design
Build Quality
Reliability
By Jeff
on

Vehicle

2003 Volkswagen New Beetle GL TDI 2dr Hatchback (1.9L 4cyl Turbodiesel 5M)


Review

I was told when I bought this car it would get 42/52 MPG because it is a deisel I have never even gotten 40 MPG ever! I felt ripped off! by the Dealer! They told me to write to VW, even though the salesman told me and repeatedly told me about the high MPG the best I've ever gotten is 35 MPG city and highway, which isn't bad, but it's not 42 or even 52 as promised by the salesman! I will never buy another car from this DEALER ever again! I feel ripped off every time I fill up.


Favorite Features

It handles well, has a great sound system, and the heated seats are a plus in the winter!


Suggested Improvements

Stop lying about the gas milage. A 4 door model would be nice!!! instant heat would be nice.


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It's AWESOME
Performance
Comfort
Fuel Economy
Fun To Drive
Interior Design
Exterior Design
Build Quality
Reliability
By LuvBug
on

Vehicle

2003 Volkswagen New Beetle GLS 1.8T 2dr Hatchback (1.8L 4cyl Turbo 5M)


Review

This car has the same engine as the Audi A4 but performs way better than an A4 (I had driven an A4 for a while). It can go fast, and It's fun to drive. The overall handling is very good which I really didn't expect!


Favorite Features

My Bug has a rear spoiler that pops up when I go 45 mph or above. I think it's a very very cool feature.


Suggested Improvements

The visor is way too small and can't do anything. I have to tint the windows.


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A nice Bug
Performance
Comfort
Fuel Economy
Fun To Drive
Interior Design
Exterior Design
Build Quality
Reliability
By Ally
on

Vehicle

2003 Volkswagen New Beetle GLS 2dr Convertible (1.8L 4cyl Turbo 5M)


Review

The pros: Fun with top down, people love to look at it, reliable, zippy power, vinyl no dead cows to sit on, windsheild is not in your face, lots of head room. Some things that disapoint me: The stupidly short sun visor that doesnt even cover 1/4 of the window to block the sun from the side. I had to get one of those kids sun shades that suctions to the giant side window. The seats are not made for long rides or if you have any kind of back trouble. The pedals are high so if you are tall, its hard to get comfortable. I still have trouble adjusting to the seat, doesn't go back far enough. The back seat is for kids only, it has no comfort. I like the car overall but the comfort is poor. Not it is not for old people.


Favorite Features

Its zippy power, cute looks, easy top to use.


Suggested Improvements

Better seat comfort! Better sun visors. Bigger trunk.


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TDI Plus and Minus
Performance
Comfort
Fuel Economy
Fun To Drive
Interior Design
Exterior Design
Build Quality
Reliability
By Terry Thompson
on

Vehicle

2003 Volkswagen New Beetle GL TDI 2dr Hatchback (1.9L 4cyl Turbodiesel 5M)


Review

The TDI Beetle is a great idea, I bought it because I assumed it would get good mileage and last a long time. Yes and no. It generally gets good gas mileage but there is a problem. Our diesel fuel isn't all that good and the engine has a tendency to combine some of the bad components with carbon particles which, over time, ends up clogging the intake manifold. There has been a solution (a rather expensive one) but VW no longer supports it. You can get to about 30,000 - 40,000 miles before something has to be done. Know this going in, if VW figures out a solution to this problem, the car is a great buy, if they don't stay away.


Favorite Features

The engine has been updated and has more power for 2004. It is a great little car to drive and practical. The back seat folds down completely.


Suggested Improvements

They have to figure out a solution to the fuel problem.


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Cute, but at a pricy
Performance
Comfort
Fuel Economy
Fun To Drive
Interior Design
Exterior Design
Build Quality
Reliability
By sherry
on

Vehicle

2003 Volkswagen New Beetle GLS 2dr Convertible (2.0L 4cyl 5M)


Review

I have to say, I love my Beetle Convertible, but I am not impressed with VW's reliability or dealer service. In less than 19,000 miles my Beetle has COMPLETELY broken down twice, and I had to have it towed both times through roadside assistance. In fact the first one was on my way home from vacation in Florida, and the delay was not a pleasant expereience. So far I've had the entire ignition system replaced, new battery and alternator and most recently had to have the front bumper removed just to fix a broken sensor. (A "quick" 6 business day fix) I think VW is right on target with their design and engineering, but they just don't make it all work. I will not be buying another VW.


Favorite Features

The sverall design is great, solid feel to the materials and build. Quiet Interior with top up. Good safety features.


Suggested Improvements

Make all of the overly complex systems actually work.


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With the wind in my hair...
Performance
Comfort
Fuel Economy
Fun To Drive
Interior Design
Exterior Design
Build Quality
Reliability
By Kristabelle
on

Vehicle

2003 Volkswagen New Beetle GLS 2dr Convertible (2.0L 4cyl 5M)


Review

Never thought I'd have a VW, much less a convertible, but here I am. This car is so cute, fun and fun to drive. I've had the top down non-stop and have had to figure out the best way to keep my hair fixed and out of my face! Gee, what a problem to have! I'm 30 w/no kids and 2 dogs. Can't wait to buy doggles for the dogs to wear in the back seat...with the wind blowing in their hair...


Favorite Features

Easy to put the top down. Roomy interior, at least in the front seat.


Suggested Improvements

Can't believe a 2003 didn't come standard with a CD player. The cup holders stink.


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No Problems with This Beetle!
Performance
Comfort
Fuel Economy
Fun To Drive
Interior Design
Exterior Design
Build Quality
Reliability
By BlueBug
on

Vehicle

2003 Volkswagen New Beetle GLX 2dr Convertible (1.8L 4cyl Turbo 5M)


Review

After reading about all the problems on the New Beetle Convertible, I had to review mine. After nearly 20,000 miles it's been flawless except for a turn signal issue that the dealer addressed. Dealer told us to ALWAYS use the top cover or risk having the top torn away at highway speeds.


Favorite Features

Blue sky above. Wind in what used to be my hair. Wind blocker actually works. 1.8 Turbo is strong!


Suggested Improvements

More lumbar support in seats. Better top cover. Sun visors are useless.


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Worth Babying
Performance
Comfort
Fuel Economy
Fun To Drive
Interior Design
Exterior Design
Build Quality
Reliability
By stoontdi
on

Vehicle

2003 Volkswagen New Beetle GL TDI 2dr Hatchback (1.9L 4cyl Turbodiesel 5M)


Review

If everybody had one of these, it wouldn't be as much fun. The TDI can pull a 1500 lb. boat and trailer better than a gas with all that torque and still get over 32 miles to the gallon.


Favorite Features

Lots of headroom, even with the sunroof. You can elevate your seat and drive like a busy-body or pump your seat to the bottom, tilt back and cruise cool.


Suggested Improvements

The engine should have been in the back where it belongs ... like a Porsche. That's why the dash board is so deep, and the rear head room is less than an old Beetle.


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