Update at 28k miles - traded in a 2012 GTI for my Beetle. At the time, I liked adding the Navigation and the style of the Beetle Classic - with unique interior and exterior styling cues. It was/is like driving a classic car with modern features and driving dynamics. The new Golf is a more practical choice all-around but the Beetle styling and vintage vibe won me over. A few quirks and minor complaints: wind noise around the window seals; the gas cap detached from its tether - twice; my friend almost broke the sun shade making an adjustment; the suspension is not sporting, making this a blvd cruiser, not a canyon carver; and the white cloth seating is, as you might expect, starting to get dirty and has a few stains. Overall, none of these items reduce my enjoyment of the car or the compliments I have received. I can get great gas mileage on long freeway trips (35 mpg at 70mph!) but doesn't do much better than my GTI in mixed city driving - averaging 26-27 most stops. The turbo has enough zip to handle traffic and not feel sluggish, but using it penalizes your mpg. I recently drove a new Golf Sportwagon and would argue that the transmission (and same engine) in that car, along with the updated platform, makes for a much more pleasant drive. Buy the Beetle for looks and you still get a very nice, stylish car, but if you want the best VW in this price range - buy a Golf.
This is not an economy car. It is a mid-level performance car, so don't think 70s Beetle, think poor man's Porsche- especially if you go for the R-Line. That is not a criticism, the car is awesome if this fits your needs. Another thing to consider is that the R-Line takes premium gas. So if fuel costs are a concern or you need a daily driver, get something else. This car is meant mainly for people who really enjoy driving and don't need it for daily things like getting to work 5 day a week. I only have it because I am an amateur hockey player and need it to get to rinks 2-3 days week. The rest of the time, it sits in front of my house looking very cool. But I still needed a car, so I figured why not get something I really want, instead of something I need for work? I take the train to work in Chicago. So the car perfect in that respect. Buy this car because you want it, not because you need it, and you'll be very happy. Update: one year later and still loving this car!
If you've been looking into the 2015 Beetle, and can't decide between another car you like. Don't hesitate any longer, if you like a sleek modern interior that will wow all your passengers, with the joys of a comfortable ride. This car is for you. Not only is this car fun to drive it's even more fun with the turbo injection and sport mode.