2014 Volkswagen Beetle Convertible Review
2014 Volkswagen Beetle Convertible Review
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Used Beetle Convertible for sale
Edmunds' Expert Review
by the Edmunds Experts
- High-style yet functional interior design
- powerful turbo R-Line engine
- fuel-efficient diesel
- more rear seat and trunk space than most convertible competitors.
- Unrefined base 2.5-liter engine
- DSG transmission's slow responses.
For 2014, the Volkswagen Beetle convertible sees a handful of small but notable changes. The Beetle Turbo picks up 10 horsepower and a name change: It's now called the Beetle R-Line to avoid confusion later in the year when VW replaces the base Beetle's 2.5-liter five-cylinder engine with a new 1.8-liter turbocharged four-cylinder. Finally, the base Beetle picks up a few more standard features, and Volkswagen's telematics system (dubbed "Car-Net") debuts, along with a rearview camera (late availability).
The 2014 Volkswagen Beetle convertible pays proper homage to an icon of the past, but it's thoroughly modern in important areas such as features and performance.
Cost to DriveCost to drive estimates for the 2014 Volkswagen Beetle Convertible 2.5L PZEV 2dr Convertible w/Technology (2.5L 5cyl 6A) and comparison vehicles are based on 15,000 miles per year (with a mix of 55% city and 45% highway driving) and energy estimates of $3.76 per gallon for regular unleaded in Virginia.
Monthly estimates based on costs in Virginia
Beetle Convertible 2.5L PZEV
Avg. Compact Car
Producing a retro-themed version of an iconic car can present automakers with quite a challenge. On one hand, they'll want it to pay proper homage to the original, but on the other, they don't want exaggerated styling cues to overshadow functional design. Unlike the previous "New Beetle" drop top, the 2014 Volkswagen Beetle convertible deftly hits the sweet spot, appealing both to nostalgic hippies and modern hipsters, as well as plenty of people in between who merely want a stylish yet practical four-seat convertible that lets them feel the wind in their hair.
The reasons for this V-dub's broad appeal are many. Within the classic yet tastefully updated shape, there is ample passenger space, sensible ergonomics, a decently sized cargo hold and suspension tuning that provides an agreeable balance between sporty handling and a comfortable ride. Variety helps, too, as one may select from a number of color and trim options and pick a gas or diesel engine.
Speaking of power plants, the base and rather humdrum 2.5-liter five-cylinder gas engine is being replaced by a 1.8-liter turbocharged four-cylinder that boasts not only slightly better power output but notably better fuel economy as well. Furthermore, because there are now two turbocharged gas engines (the new 1.8 and the carryover 2.0), the Beetle Turbo is renamed the Beetle R-Line.
As affordable convertibles go, the 2014 Volkswagen Beetle is pretty appealing. Compared to other retro-fashion small cars like the Fiat 500 and Mini Cooper, the Beetle boasts a roomier backseat, a stronger base engine (with the new 1.8T) and a larger cargo area. That's all true in comparison to a Mazda Miata as well, though the Miata is much more fun to drive through turns.
Meanwhile, you'd have to move up to the Chrysler 200 convertible to find something roomier in back, or a Chevrolet Camaro or Ford Mustang – both of which provide stronger performance. Volkswagen's own Eos provides extra security and noise insulation thanks to its retractable hardtop design, but it's much more expensive. Overall, if you're looking for a small coupe or convertible that provides equal amounts of style and function, the 2014 Volkswagen Beetle should be on your consideration list.
Performance & mpg
Powering the Beetle Convertible 2.5L is a 2.5-liter five-cylinder engine with 170 horsepower and 177 pound-feet of torque. Later in the model year Volkswagen will replace this engine with a 1.8-liter turbocharged four-cylinder that generates 170 hp and 184 lb-ft. Every Beetle is front-wheel drive.
For the 2.5L and the 1.8L, a six-speed automatic transmission is the only transmission to be had. Estimated EPA fuel economy for the 2.5L is a disappointing 23 mpg combined (21 mpg city/27 mpg highway) while the 1.8-liter four-cylinder does much better with 27 mpg combined (24 mpg city/32 mpg highway).
The Beetle R-Line convertible gets a turbocharged 2.0-liter four-cylinder that produces 210 hp and 207 lb-ft of torque. A six-speed manual is standard and a six-speed automated manual (known as DSG) is optional. Fuel economy stands at 26 mpg combined (23 mpg city/31 mpg highway) with the six-speed and 25 mpg combined (23 mpg city/39 mpg highway) with the DSG. In Edmunds testing, a Beetle R-Line convertible with the six-speed manual transmission went from zero to 60 mph in 6.7 seconds. That's a quick time compared to other compact convertibles and about average amongst sporty compact coupes.
A turbocharged 2.0-liter diesel engine with 140 hp and 236 lb-ft of torque powers the Beetle TDI. As with the R-Line, buyers can choose between a six-speed manual and the six-speed DSG. Fuel economy estimates stand at 32 mpg combined (28 mpg city/41 mpg highway) for the manual and 31 mpg combined (28 mpg city/37 mpg highway) for DSG.
Every 2014 Volkswagen Beetle convertible comes standard with traction and stability control, antilock disc brakes and front side airbags that protect the body and the head in side-impact collisions. Volkswagen's new Car-Net telematics system features crash notification, roadside assistance, stolen vehicle location, remote door unlocking and geo-fencing (which allows parents to set boundaries for teenage drivers).
In government crash tests, the Beetle coupe received a rating of five stars for overall crash protection, with four stars awarded for total frontal protection and five stars for total side-impact protection. The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) gave the Beetle coupe its top rating of "Good" in its moderate-overlap frontal-offset, and side-impact tests. In IIHS's small-overlap frontal-offset test, the Beetle scored a rating of "Marginal," the third lowest of four possible ratings.
During Edmunds testing, the Beetle R-Line convertible came to a stop from 60 mph in 113 feet, which is an excellent performance for the segment.
How the 2014 Volkswagen Beetle convertible drives largely depends on the engine you choose. The base five-cylinder is respectably powerful, but it sounds unrefined and gets disappointing fuel economy. Having sampled the new turbocharged 1.8-liter engine, we suggest waiting to get a base Beetle with this engine, as it's much smoother and far more fuel-efficient.
The Beetle Convertible R-Line is still the top dog here, and has plenty of punch and sounds great. As with other Volkswagen diesel models, the Beetle TDI drop top provides plenty of low-end grunt and ample passing/merging power along with very good fuel economy.
The R-Line's six-speed manual is quite possibly the most easily shifted do-it-yourself transmission around, while the sophisticated DSG gearbox is a nice compromise for those who want the convenience of an automatic with the performance and control of a manual. However, the DSG's responses can be frustratingly slow when accelerating from a stop while using the normal drive mode.
The Beetle's handling is respectably adept, though the car's overall abilities and steering response are well short of what you'll get from a Fiat 500 Abarth or Mini Cooper S. Then again, most convertible drivers just want to cruise city streets or local highways with the top down, and driven in this manner, the Beetle is pretty comfortable. Even the R-Line's sport suspension shrugs off bumps and ruts in the road. You'll notice the road's imperfections, but there's very little harshness.
The 2014 VW Beetle convertible's cabin draws design inspiration from the original flower-power model, yet includes the same features, controls and construction as modern Volkswagens. The trim that runs across the dash and doors can be color-keyed to the exterior just as in old Bugs, while the Turbo gets secondary dash-top gauges and available two-tone seats.
It's a pretty cool passenger environment, and unlike a Mini Cooper, it doesn't induce the sort of head-scratching that can come from odd control placement and frustrating ergonomics. The optional navigation system is easy to use, though its small screen limits usefulness. The premium Fender sound system, on the other hand, is well worth the extra cost and provides impressive sound quality.
The Beetle still provides plenty of room for tall drivers, and most people will find the front seats pretty comfortable. Rear-seat passengers will find a modest amount of legroom and a bolt-upright seatback, but no mainstream convertible save for the Chrysler 200 offers anything substantially better. The soft top folds lower atop the rear deck, and a tonneau cover can be affixed to the folded roof for a cleaner look and less wind noise. The car's trunk holds up to 7.1 cubic feet, and that space can be expanded by flipping down one or both halves of the 50/50-split rear seatbacks.
2014 Volkswagen Beetle Convertible models
The 2014 Volkswagen Beetle convertible is available in three main trim levels: Beetle 2.5L (2.5-liter gasoline), Beetle R-Line (turbocharged 2.0-liter gasoline) and Beetle TDI (turbocharged 2.0-liter diesel). Note that later in the model year the 2.5L will be replaced by the 1.8T (turbocharged 1.8-liter four).
The Beetle 2.5L comes standard with a power-operated fabric top, 17-inch alloy wheels, heated windshield-washer nozzles, heated mirrors, full power accessories, air-conditioning, cruise control, a leather-wrapped tilt-and-telescoping steering wheel, heated and height-adjustable front seats (with lumbar adjustment), leatherette (premium vinyl) upholstery, Bluetooth phone and audio connectivity, a trip computer and an eight-speaker sound system with a CD player, an iPod interface and an auxiliary audio jack. Also standard is VW's new Car-Net telematics system.
The Technology package adds keyless ignition/entry, satellite radio and a touchscreen audio interface. The Sound & Navigation package includes the above plus 18-inch wheels, a navigation system, and a premium Fender audio system with a subwoofer.
The Beetle R-Line adds the following to the Beetle 2.5L's equipment: a more powerful engine, 18-inch wheels, foglights, a sport-tuned suspension, sport seats, unique cloth upholstery, a performance gauge package, faux carbon-fiber accents and alloy pedals.
The R-Line Sound package adds the same items as the 2.5L's Technology package along with the Fender audio system. The R-Line's Sound and Navigation System adds 19-inch wheels, bi-xenon headlights, LED running lights, leather upholstery and a navigation system to the above package.
The Beetle TDI includes the 2.5L's standard equipment along with keyless ignition/entry, satellite radio, a touchscreen audio interface and a performance gauge package. It similarly offers the 2.5L's optional Sound & Navigation package.
4.3 out of 5 stars
Most helpful consumer reviews
2.88 out of 5 stars
Beetle Convertible Defect
1.8T 2dr Convertible (1.8L 4cyl Turbo 6A)
My dream car, a 2014 VW Beetle Convertible soon became a nightmare. Noisy, inconsistent, & unpredictable, it spent way too much time in the Service Department than on the road. After they claimed it was fixed by VW Engineers, I was driving down HWY 111 when the convertible control panel fell out of the roof nearly hitting me in the face as it swung back-and-forth almost causing an … accident. The VW corporation ended up replacing that vehicle with the same model. Unfortunately, the new Beetle had all the same serious bugs as the last one. When I contacted the VW corporation again, they blew me off. Now, I want to warn others about these cute but potentially dangerous cars. If you want to waste
4 out of 5 stars
1.8T 2dr Convertible (1.8L 4cyl Turbo 6A)
Last summer I decided to live out one of my dreams. My mom has just retired and also shared a similar dream and that was drive up the PCH from LA to Sab Francisco in a convertible. After doing a bunch of research on rental car companies we chose on that we felt would work for our needs. Much to my disappointment upon arrival we were told that there are three cars available for us non of … which where un my list of cars to rent or had a big American V8. My choices where a baby blue beetle convertible or a purple Miata. Knowing that we would be spending the next two weeks on the road and where going to have friends in the car with us we chose the Beetle. I was familiar with VW as I had a TDI Jetta at the time so the interior was very familiar. We through both suitcases in the trunk and they both fight surprisingly. I put the top down with ease and programmed the Bluetooth so that I could get some direction on where I was going which took all of 3 minutes. With my destination plugged we head off Oceanside, Ca which is about 90 miles south of LA. Getting in the highway I heard the distinct sound of a turbo whistling and thought to myself that this may not be as bad as I thought. We drove the 90 miles with the top down and the heated seats on and had no problems. We stopped twice on the way down to get some food and water and a bathroom break and each time we stopped there was a comment on the car. My disappointment started to turned around. With the top down, the ocean breezing filling the cabin and the stereo cranked I was really started to enjoy the car. We had no problems hearing the radio with the top down either and I was even able to make a phone call using the Bluetooth and on the other end the person could hear me just fine. After spending several days in Oceanside with some friends and a few dinner runs with four people in the car I was very surprised with how much this convertible could do. The next stop was San Pedro and again we had no issues with the car. Evening sitting in the terrible LA traffic everything seemed perfect. After two nights in San Pedro it was time for the main event. Two days on the PCH with the top down and an overnight stay in Morrow Bay. We headed first thing in the morning and sat in traffic for 2 hours before we made it up to the PCH and after several days in the car already the seats became a little uncomfortable. Both my mom and I had the heated seats cranked hoping to keep the pain at bay. We finally made it to the PCH and we started getting into the curvy bits. I started pushing the little bug hard into the corners. I was not disappointed and the German engineering was really starting to show. There was very little body roll even with the top down and it did everything I asked it to without hesitation. We finally made it to Morrow Bay and filled up the car after driving aggressive and was very happy with the gas mileage. It got 27 MPG which by the way was the worst tank I saw on this 2200 mile trip. During our stop in morrow bay I had several comments like "cool car" and even had a conversation with a VW hippie. The next day we headed to San Fran and Mom and I had come to the conclusion that the seats are pretty bad on long trips. It got to the point that we didn't really enjoy sitting in the car anymore. Granted this was a brand new car. I think once the car had more miles on it they would become more comfortable. One the 2nd key I got behind a new mustang convertible with a man and his wife driving and I don't know if he was not confident with the car or what but even at moments when he was driving like me I was able to keep with him and felt like I couldn pretty much tear that mustang a new one on curvy road with this beetle. Anyways in conclusion the things I liked about the car is the power, the handling, and the looks. I had a couple of people comment on how it looks like an old 356 Porsche which gave me the confidence that this car is no longer just for women. The gas mileage was amazing even with my abusing the car for 4 days. I think the best tank I saw was 33mpg. The things I didn't like. The seats are uncomfortable and hope that down the road they would break in. The only other thing I didn't like was the when the top was up you can forget about seeing over shoulders. With the top up you are unable to see what is next to you on the highway and in parking lot situations. It was actually a little spooky. Other than that I was very impressed with the car. I would rent one again and may even consider buying one if I was in the market for a convertiable.
4.63 out of 5 stars
Excellent Engine; poor interior mechanics
TDI 2dr Convertible (2.0L 4cyl Turbodiesel 6AM)
I went for a red TDI 2014 convertible! The car is very fun, and gets excellent gas mileage. Within a week I noticed several defects to interior workmanship. The worst one was the rubber liner that goes along the windows and convertible connection. The driver side is perfect. The passenger side has an extra centimeter of rubber that sticks out with much wind noise I can push the rubber … piece so that it closes the gap, and the whistling goes away. A couple of other sucky items are the front passenger seat quick release and the driver seat leatherette lining. The entire passenger seat had to be replaced bc somthing broke. The manager said he mayhave to replace the seat liner. too many defects
5 out of 5 stars
So far so good
2.5L 2dr Convertible w/Sound, Navigation (2.5L 5cyl 6A)
No issues at all...car has been a dream and totally fun, Iconic ride..Rline package makes it look awesome....great beach and summer car !!
Features & Specs
More about the 2014 Volkswagen Beetle Convertible
Used 2014 Volkswagen Beetle Convertible Overview
The Used 2014 Volkswagen Beetle Convertible is offered in the following submodels: Beetle Convertible, Beetle Convertible Diesel. Available styles include 2.5L PZEV 2dr Convertible w/Technology (2.5L 5cyl 6A), 2.5L PZEV 2dr Convertible w/Sound, Navigation (2.5L 5cyl 6A), 2.5L PZEV 2dr Convertible (2.5L 5cyl 6A), TDI 2dr Convertible (2.0L 4cyl Turbodiesel 6AM), TDI 2dr Convertible w/Premium (2.0L 4cyl Turbodiesel 6AM), 1.8T 2dr Convertible (1.8L 4cyl Turbo 6A), R-Line PZEV 2dr Convertible (2.0L Turbo 4cyl 6M), R-Line PZEV 2dr Convertible w/Sound, Navigation (2.0L Turbo 4cyl 6AM), R-Line PZEV 2dr Convertible w/Sound (2.0L Turbo 4cyl 6AM), R-Line PZEV 2dr Convertible (2.0L Turbo 4cyl 6AM), R-Line 2dr Convertible w/Sound, Navigation (2.0L Turbo 4cyl 6AM), R-Line 2dr Convertible w/Sound, Navigation (2.0L Turbo 4cyl 6M), R-Line 2dr Convertible (2.0L Turbo 4cyl 6M), R-Line PZEV 2dr Convertible w/Sound, Navigation (2.0L Turbo 4cyl 6M), R-Line 2dr Convertible (2.0L Turbo 4cyl 6AM), R-Line 2dr Convertible w/Sound (2.0L Turbo 4cyl 6AM), R-Line 2dr Convertible w/Sound (2.0L Turbo 4cyl 6M), R-Line PZEV 2dr Convertible w/Sound (2.0L Turbo 4cyl 6M), TDI 2dr Convertible w/Sound, Navigation (2.0L 4cyl Turbodiesel 6M), TDI 2dr Convertible w/Sound, Navigation (2.0L 4cyl Turbodiesel 6AM), 1.8T 2dr Convertible w/Premium (1.8L 4cyl Turbo 6A), 1.8T 2dr Convertible w/Technology (1.8L 4cyl Turbo 6A), 2.5L 2dr Convertible w/Technology (2.5L 5cyl 6A), 1.8T PZEV 2dr Convertible (1.8L 4cyl Turbo 6A), 2.5L 2dr Convertible (2.5L 5cyl 6A), 1.8T PZEV 2dr Convertible w/Sound, Navigation (1.8L 4cyl Turbo 6A), TDI 2dr Convertible (2.0L 4cyl Turbodiesel 6M), 2.5L 2dr Convertible w/Sound, Navigation (2.5L 5cyl 6A), 1.8T PZEV 2dr Convertible w/Technology (1.8L 4cyl Turbo 6A), and 1.8T 2dr Convertible w/Sound, Navigation (1.8L 4cyl Turbo 6A). Pre-owned Volkswagen Beetle Convertible models are available with a 2.5 L-liter gas engine, with output up to 170 hp, depending on engine type. The Used 2014 Volkswagen Beetle Convertible comes with front wheel drive. Available transmissions include: 6-speed shiftable automatic. The Used 2014 Volkswagen Beetle Convertible comes with a 3 yr./ 36000 mi. basic warranty, a 3 yr./ 36000 mi. roadside warranty, and a 5 yr./ 60000 mi. powertrain warranty.
What's a good price on a Used 2014 Volkswagen Beetle Convertible?
Price comparisons for Used 2014 Volkswagen Beetle Convertible trim styles:
- The Used 2014 Volkswagen Beetle Convertible TDI is priced between $19,990 and$28,590 with odometer readings between 21085 and93186 miles.
- The Used 2014 Volkswagen Beetle Convertible 1.8T PZEV is priced between $19,990 and$24,998 with odometer readings between 40891 and66762 miles.
- The Used 2014 Volkswagen Beetle Convertible 2.5L PZEV is priced between $21,990 and$23,590 with odometer readings between 39193 and51037 miles.
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Which used 2014 Volkswagen Beetle Convertibles are available in my area?
Shop Edmunds' car, SUV, and truck listings of over 6 million vehicles to find a cheap new, used, or certified pre-owned (CPO) 2014 Volkswagen Beetle Convertible for sale near. There are currently 11 used and CPO 2014 Beetle Convertibles listed for sale in your area, with list prices as low as $19,990 and mileage as low as 21085 miles. Simply research the type of car you're interested in and then select a used car from our massive database to find cheap prew-owned vehicles for sale near you. Once you have identified a used vehicle you're interested in, check the AutoCheck vehicle history reports, read dealer reviews, and find out what other owners paid for the Used 2014 Volkswagen Beetle Convertible.
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Should I lease or buy a 2014 Volkswagen Beetle Convertible?
Is it better to lease or buy a car? Ask most people and they'll probably tell you that car buying is the way to go. And from a financial perspective, it's true, provided you're willing to make higher monthly payments, pay off the loan in full and keep the car for a few years. Leasing, on the other hand, can be a less expensive option on a month-to-month basis. It's also good if you're someone who likes to drive a new car every three years or so.