2004 Volkswagen New Beetle Review | Edmunds.com

2004 Volkswagen New Beetle

Volkswagen New Beetle Features and Specs

Features & Specs

  • Engine 2.0 L Inline 4-cylinder
  • Drivetrain Front Wheel Drive
  • Transmission 5-speed Manual
  • Horse Power 115 hp @ 5200 rpm
  • Fuel Economy 21/28 mpg
  • Bluetooth No
  • Navigation No
  • Heated Seats No

Review of the 2004 Volkswagen New Beetle

  • The image car in VW's lineup, the New Beetle offers a unique combination of safety, fun and upscale features for its price range.

  • Safety
  • Pros

    Cute yet classic styling, range of engine choices, long list of standard features, good crash test scores.

  • Cons

    Tight rear-seat accommodations, limited cargo room, high price of Turbo S model.

  • What's New for 2004

    For 2004, the New Beetle is no longer available in GLX trim. There's an improved TDI engine and restyled 16- and 17-inch wheels. Turbo S…

What Others Are Saying

Customer Reviews

  Average Consumer Rating (235 total reviews)

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

Worst car

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Vehicle: 2004 Volkswagen New Beetle GLS 2dr Convertible (2.0L 4cyl 6A)

I bought this car on June 2011. it had less than 90, 000 miles on it. few months after i bought it, the flap panels broke, headliner started falling apart and the inside began to deteriorate. when it hit 100,000 miles the transmission started acting up, the valve body ended up need replaced. the headlights and anything electrical really is always acting up. i got this car at the VW dealership and thought i was getting a good deal on it, but not even 2 years later and i have already put thousands of dollars into its repairs. I am a nursing student and this is probably the least reliable car you could own. Have filed a complaint with the BBB, but never received a response.

Yet another lemon new beetle

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Vehicle: 2004 Volkswagen New Beetle GLS 1.8T 2dr Hatchback (1.8L 4cyl Turbo 4A)

The worst VW I have ever owned. Hideous number of electrical problems with multiple trips to the dealer for air bags, engine indicator lights, turn signals and so on. Transmission died a few miles from expiration. I actually pulled to the side of the road, called the dealer on my cellular phone and reported the problem and gave them the mileage a told them the problem occurred UNDER warranty. The timing belt broke, roughly a 300 buck fix, but it took out all but 2 valves. Cost over 3,000 to put back on the road and then more problems with the exhaust and gaskets. Now the turbo makes a funny, and not ha-ha, noise and I am looking at my fourth set of tires. Will never own another VW.

Dream car, turned nightmare!

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Vehicle: 2004 Volkswagen New Beetle GL 2dr Convertible (2.0L 4cyl 6A)

This was my mom's dream car, but it has been nothing but a nightmare! The electrical is always goofy, fast blinker, check engine light always on & 6 months after buying, driver's side window won't go down and come back up to the hood seal automatically - a problem I've heard about from every convertible owner. Another problem I've heard from every Beetle owner, the water pump either breaks or leaks. The transmission is this cars biggest downfall. After owning it for 1.5 years the transmission would get very touchy, stuck in gear, hard shifting, funny sounds, esp in stop & go traffic or when trying to go after coming to a stop. Finally went completely out while after stopping at a red light.

Gas Mileage


  • 21
  • cty
  • 28
  • highway
Calculate Yearly Fuel Costs

Full 2004 Volkswagen New Beetle Review

What's New for 2004

For 2004, the New Beetle is no longer available in GLX trim. There's an improved TDI engine and restyled 16- and 17-inch wheels. Turbo S models get uniquely styled 17-inch wheels as a late-year addition. New safety features include head curtain airbags and upgraded head restraints. The Monsoon audio system is now standard on the GLS and new GDL headlights are optional. Later in the model year a fixed rear spoiler will replace the power-operated unit and a CD player with MP3 capability will be added. Convertibles get new exterior colors and color combinations. All Beetles get a new fuel cap warning light this year. TDI models can be equipped with a Direct Shift Gearbox (DSG), which is a six-speed manual transmission with electronic control of the clutch and gearshifting. It can be operated in full automatic mode, like a traditional automatic, or shifted manually like a Tiptronic.

Talk About The 2004 New Beetle

2004 Volkswagen New Beetle Discussions See all Started By

My friend replaced my driver side headlight bulb on my 2004 new beetle turbo. It doesn't work and now my ac compressor doesn't come on, the EPC light, check engine light and the brake light are on an...

2004 Golf, Jetta and New Beetle GL and GLS trim levels will have a new 1.9L TDI-PD with 100hp and 177 lb-ft. of torque available in GL and GLS trim levels. The Golf and Jetta models will be available ...

I have been searching the web, and found a ton of people talking about the same issue with the 2004-5 New Beetles shifting issues between 1-3rd gears. I also searched the recall website (no recalls on...