2017 Volkswagen Beetle Hatchback

2017 Volkswagen Beetle
MSRP range
$19,995 - $32,550
2017 Volkswagen Beetle

Pros

  • Stylish interior design
  • Both available engines offer a nice mix of power and fuel economy
  • More practical than other high-style small cars

Cons

  • More expensive than competitors
  • Less practical than conventional compact hatchbacks


Which Beetle does Edmunds recommend?

The VW Beetle in 1.8T SE trim strikes a favorable middle ground between the base S and range-topping SEL models. You get all of the personality and charm that come with a Beetle, as well as a few niceties to make you feel special. There are plenty of smartphone apps to fill the navigation and entertainment gaps between this and the higher trims. The 2.0T R-Line is the sporty one of the bunch, but its price is hard to justify against VW's own GTI.

Edmunds' Expert Review

Overall rating

3.5 / 5

The 2017 Volkswagen Beetle stakes out a pleasant middle ground among the few retro-themed hatchbacks that we consider its competition. It's stylish but also very functional and easy to drive. If you're seeking a fun retromobile in that Goldilocks zone, the VW Beetle should be on your short list.

In comparison, the Mini Cooper has plenty of charm, but it's more expensive than a similarly appointed Beetle. There's also the Fiat 500, which is quite a bit less expensive, but its build quality and performance could lead to disappointment.

This year, the Beetle returns with only a few minor changes. The more typical trim levels remain, bolstered by a few models to keep things interesting. The new #PinkBeetle (not associated with Breast Cancer Awareness organizations) brings a funky fucshia paint job and quaint plaid interior, the returning Dune harkens back to the Baja Bugs of the 1970s, and the 2.0T R-Line should appeal to more performance-oriented drivers.

Thankfully, the charm and personality of the 2017 Beetle don't mean you need to sacrifice elsewhere. It's plenty capable, comfortable and convenient. The bigger concern may be price — the Beetle does cost a bit more than some of its other retro-themed rivals, but it likely won't be so great as to kill a deal. With seven available trim levels, there's probably one in your budget.

Trim levels & features

The 2017 Volkswagen Beetle two-door hatchback is available in seven trim levels, starting with the 1.8T S and then climbing to the 1.8T Classic, 1.8 SE, a new #PinkBeetle limited edition, 1.8T Dune, 1.8 SEL and 2.0T R-Line SEL. The 1.8 models (including the #PinkBeetle) are powered by a turbocharged 1.8-liter four-cylinder engine (170 horsepower, 184 pound-feet of torque) while the 2.0T R-Line receives a turbocharged 2.0-liter engine (210 hp, 207 lb-ft). A six-speed automatic transmission is standard except on the 2.0T R-Line, which receives a quicker-shifting six-speed dual-clutch automatic transmission.

For the most part, successive trim levels add more comfort and technology features, but even the base 1.8T S comes with a solid list of standard items. The real outlier is the 2.0T R-Line model that has a greater focus on performance.

Standard feature highlights for the base 1.8T S trim include 16-inch alloy wheels, automatic headlights, heated mirrors, a rear spoiler, cruise control, air conditioning, cloth upholstery, a tilt-and-telescoping steering wheel, 50/50-split folding rear seats, a rearview camera, an auto-dimming rearview mirror, a 5-inch touchscreen, Bluetooth phone and streaming audio, and an eight-speaker CD player with auxiliary and USB input.

The 1.8T Classic adds 17-inch wheels, cloth-and-imitation leather upholstery, lumbar adjustments for the front seats, heated front seats, VW Car-Net smartphone integration, a 6.3-inch touchscreen, a navigation system, and satellite and HD radio. This model does not come with the automatic headlights or the auto-dimming rearview mirror.

Our favorite Beetle is the 1.8T SE. You get the automatic headlights and auto-dimming mirror along with keyless entry and ignition, imitation-leather upholstery and color-adjustable ambient interior lighting. The SE does not include the navigation system, but given the infotainment system's robust smartphone app integration systems, you're unlikely to miss it.

The limited-edition #PinkBeetle is appointed similarly to the 1.8 SE and is only available in a metallic fucshia exterior color. Other additions include xenon headlights, LED running lights and taillights and unique plaid upholstery. The 1.8T Dune model is also similar to the 1.8 SE trim but adds unique exterior styling elements, LED taillights, a slightly raised suspension and cloth/leatherette upholstered sport seats. It does not include the keyless entry/ignition, however.

At the top of the Beetle line is the loaded 1.8 SEL. Compared to the SE, it has 18-inch wheels, a sunroof, front and rear parking sensors, blind-spot monitoring with rear cross-traffic alert, dual-zone automatic climate control, the navigation system and a Fender premium audio system.

The Beetle 2.0T R-Line SEL starts with the 1.8T SEL's features and adds 20-inch wheels with summer performance tires, a sport-tuned suspension, xenon headlights, foglights with cornering lights, a sunroof, unique exterior and interior styling treatments, shift paddles mounted to the steering wheel and leather upholstery.

Trim tested

2016 Volkswagen Beetle 1.8T Dune (turbo 1.8L inline-4 | 6-speed automatic | FWD)

NOTE: This test was conducted on the 2016 Volkswagen Beetle 1.8T Dune, which differs from other 1.8T Beetles by the nature of its taller ride height and wider track that will likely affect handling and ride comfort. Our other findings remain broadly applicable to other Beetle models.

Driving

3.5
Acceleration is good whether you're pulling away from a stoplight or looking to overtake a semi on the freeway. But braking effort is higher than anticipated because the brakes aren't quick to respond. The Dune's raised ride height and comfort-oriented suspension tuning come at the cost of handling.

Acceleration

4
The 2017 Volkswagen Beetle's engine output numbers may not be all that impressive, but the 1.8-liter has plenty of real-world power. You don't have to floor the pedal to force a downshift, and its 0-60 mph time of 7.5 seconds is quick for the class.

Braking

3
There's a lack of initial braking force that makes it difficult to slow the Beetle smoothly. There's also a lot of pedal travel, so stops require more force than you might expect. Stopping power is impressive, though. We measured a very good 115-foot distance in our panic-stop test from 60 mph.

Steering

3
Steering effort is a bit heavier than expected, making the Beetle feel more controllable at highway speeds than its rivals, yet very light when maneuvering at slow speeds. The thin-rimmed steering wheel feels a little flimsy, though.

Handling

3
The Dune's raised suspension feels nice around town, but around tight corners, there's a noticeable amount of body roll. This might sap your confidence to drive the Beetle quickly when the road gets twisty. The R-Line is better, but no Beetle is truly engaging.

Drivability

3.5
The Beetle does most things right and is easy to drive. Its small footprint and the Dune's standard rearview camera and front and rear sensors make it extremely easy to maneuver in tight spaces.

Comfort

4
Though Volkswagen plays off the 2017 Beetle's style, this is thankfully still a modern-day small car. The seats hug you without being oppressive, and the suspension dispatches road imperfections without transmitting any harshness to the driver. Exterior noise is limited.

Seat comfort

3.5
The seat bottom isn't long enough to provide taller drivers with outstanding thigh support. Otherwise, the seats feel supportive and comfortable, and the cloth inserts offer good cushioning. Adjustable lumbar support isn't standard in this class, so we're happy the Beetle offers it.

Ride comfort

4.5
Even though the Dune's raised suspension doesn't do much for handling, it certainly seems to make this Beetle ride well. Impacts are well controlled, and the Beetle never feels jittery. This would be a great road trip car. Beetle R-Lines ride more firmly.

Noise & vibration

4.5
The cabin is insulated from road, tire and wind noise. At highway cruising speeds, the engine is relatively low on the rev range and is fairly quiet. Even when you boot the gas, the Beetle is hushed compared to most rivals.

Interior

4
The Beetle feels airy and bright thanks to the large windows, and the roof is high enough for a pair of tall adults in the front. A thoughtful strap helps occupants hoist themselves out of the rear seat. Visibility out the back is hampered by a small window and thick pillars.

Ease of use

4
Controls are logically placed, clearly labeled and within reach of front seat occupants. Climate controls are simple, and the steering wheel buttons are easy to operate without having to change your grip much.

Getting in/getting out

3
The fairly large doors make getting into and out of the Beetle easy, but their size can limit how far they can be opened in a parking lot. Rear passengers have a nifty pillar-mounted grab handle to make getting out of the backseats easier.

Roominess

3
There's plenty of headroom for those in the front, although two adults are likely to brush elbows. Rear seats are comfortable, but minimal amounts of leg- and headroom diminish their long-distance usefulness.

Visibility

3
Forward and side visibility are just fine, thanks to the large windshield and windows. Rear visibility is compromised due to the large pillars, rear headrests and small rear window. The standard rearview camera and front and rear parking sensors are appreciated.

Quality

3
A slight creaking noise came from the dash in our tester, but otherwise build quality was solid. Interior materials looked and felt fine but weren't class-leading. Its hard, body-colored plastic trim was an acquired taste.

Utility

3
There isn't a lot of space in the 2017 VW Beetle for your personal items in the cabin, but the cargo space should be able to accommodate plenty of your larger items. Overall, the Beetle is about average in this category.

Small-item storage

3
Gimmicky door nets are a poor substitute for actual cubbies, and the armrest bin doesn't hold much. But there's a good amount of space under the center stack.

Cargo space

3
The Beetle's hatchback design gives it a decently sized trunk at 15.4 cubic feet. With the 50/50-split folding rear seats stowed, that capacity expands to 30 cubic feet, but it's important to note that these figures represent loading the space to the ceiling.

Technology

3
As far as infotainment systems go, the VW Beetle's isn't cutting-edge, but it is relatively easy to use and the screen resolution is sharp enough to read at a quick glance.

Audio & navigation

3
The touchscreen utilizes a nice mix of physical and digital controls. It's easy to use, but it's a couple inches too small by contemporary standards.

Top consumer reviews

Read what other owners think about the 2017 Volkswagen Beetle.

A great sport coupe for not a lot money
D. Rod,04/08/2017
I originally went to the VW dealer to buy a GTI but I didn't like the car. It looks great and the GTI title suggests that it's a grand touring car but it's more of a track car, not what I was looking for. So, after testing the GTI, I rested my back a little bit (the GTI suspension is rock hard) then tried the Beetle S. And, I loved it. It's a solid sports coupe with the perfect mix of performance and comfort. Also, it's quite a good value. These are the key features: an Audi derived turbo charged four cylinder (smooth and powerful), automatic transmission that can be shifted manually, Hankook GT tires (great performance tires with a lot of grip), multilink independent rear suspension, and a radiator grill done NASCAR style (positioned down low). You can get all this for about $21,000. It's hard to find another brand that offers all this at that price point. Bottom line, it's a lot of fun to drive. I drove a 2007 VW Rabbit for 10 years and the only maintenance, other than routine, was the replacement of transmission driveshaft boots. So, I think it's reasonable to expect this car to be just as reliable. Also, just a final note, VW engineers chose this car to race in Red Bull Global Rallycross in which it won two championships.
1 mo and 4500mi. later
Scott,03/11/2018
I am a big tall person and bought the beetle because it was a 2 door. Gas mileage is fantastic and it runs great at 75 mph. Radio is decent but no remote start or other luxury items. Seat quality could use another inch of foam. Tires are awful but Hankook put me into better tires. Hydroplaned in heavy rain. Probably going to end up with Michelins. Now for the good things. It is a blast to drive and it likes to go fast. Cruise control is great. Stopping for a deer was fantastic ( I live in North Texas). My king ranch is so lonely from sitting, it is lonely. Need a lot better dealer support.
Looks great, but that's about it
James,02/24/2018
The looks of the Beetle are great, but the driving experience is very underwhelming. Tons of road noise & not that easy to see out of the rear. Car handles & accelerates ok but the interior fabric & armrests feel rather cheap. Much nicer feeling small cars on the market like the NIssan Sentra & Honda Civic, they just don't have the Beetle look.
Nice Car looks great it’s a Beetle
Stephen,06/30/2018
Good on gas Looks good to
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Features & Specs

MSRP
$20,475
MPG
24 city / 33 hwy
Seats 4
6-speed shiftable automatic
Gas
170 hp @ 4800 rpm
MSRP
$19,995
MPG
24 city / 33 hwy
Seats 4
6-speed shiftable automatic
Gas
170 hp @ 4800 rpm
MSRP
$22,450
MPG
24 city / 33 hwy
Seats 4
6-speed shiftable automatic
Gas
170 hp @ 4800 rpm
MSRP
$25,975
MPG
24 city / 33 hwy
Seats 4
6-speed shiftable automatic
Gas
170 hp @ 4800 rpm
See all 2017 Volkswagen Beetle Hatchback features & specs

Safety

Our experts’ favorite Beetle safety features:

VW Car-Net
Includes automatic crash notification and roadside assistance as well as some convenience features built into a smartphone app.
Blind-Spot Monitor
Alerts you if there's a vehicle in your blind spot. It includes rear cross-traffic alert, too.
Automatic Post-Collision Braking System
Automatically applies the brakes in the event of a collision, reducing the likelihood of a secondary impact.

NHTSA Overall Rating

The National Highway Transportation Safety Administration offers independent analysis.
  • Frontal Barrier Crash Rating
    Overall4 / 5
    Driver5 / 5
    Passenger4 / 5
  • Side Crash Rating
    Overall5 / 5
  • Side Barrier Rating
    Overall5 / 5
    Driver5 / 5
    Passenger5 / 5
  • Combined Side Barrier & Pole Ratings
    Front Seat5 / 5
    Back Seat5 / 5
  • Rollover
    Rollover4 / 5
    Dynamic Test ResultNo Tip
    Risk Of Rollover10.5%

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More about the 2017 Volkswagen Beetle

The 2017 Volkswagen Beetle stakes out a pleasant middle ground between style and functionality. Easy to drive, well built and visually distinctive, the Beetle allows drivers to enjoy its charms without sacrificing day-to-day livability.

Most Beetles get Volkswagen's turbocharged 1.8-liter four-cylinder engine, which delivers 170 horsepower and 184 pound-feet of torque and drives the front wheels through a six-speed automatic transmission. It's hard to find fault with this powertrain, which delivers stronger passing power than you might expect given its modest output numbers. If you want more, though, there's an available turbocharged 2.0-liter engine that serves up 210 hp and 207 lb-ft of torque and comes with a quicker-shifting six-speed, dual-clutch automatic. EPA fuel economy estimates are 28 mpg combined for the base engine and 26 mpg for the more powerful 2.0-liter.

Volkswagen offers the Beetle in seven trim levels, starting with the 1.8T S and then climbing to the 1.8T Classic, 1.8 SE, a new #PinkBeetle limited edition, 1.8T Dune, 1.8 SEL and 2.0T R-Line SEL.

Standard feature highlights for the base 1.8T S trim include 16-inch alloy wheels, a rearview camera, an auto-dimming rearview mirror, a 5-inch touchscreen, Bluetooth and an eight-speaker sound system. The 1.8T Classic adds a few extra features including a bigger touchscreen and a navigation system. You get a few more features with the 1.8 SE, while the limited-edition #PinkBeetle is appointed similarly to the 1.8 SE but is only available in a metallic fuchsia exterior color.

The 1.8T Dune model is also similar to the 1.8 SE trim but adds unique exterior styling elements. At the top of the Beetle line is the loaded 1.8 SEL. With the Beetle 2.0T R-Line SEL, you get 20-inch wheels, a sport-tuned suspension, xenon headlights, and unique exterior and interior styling treatments.

No matter the version, the Beetle is decent to drive, with steering that feels light around town and firm on the open road. Visibility is limited to the rear, but the standard-fit rearview camera and front and rear parking sensors make it easy to maneuver in tight spaces. The Dune model rides higher than other Beetles, while the R-Line feels more tidy around turns. Overall, none of the Beetles are all that engaging to drive.

That said, we like the practical aspects: The seats are supportive, the ride is comfortable (even on the more firmly sprung R-Line), and the big windows make the cabin feel bright and airy. Headroom is fantastic for front seat passengers; backseaters don't make out so well in either the head- or legroom department, but the seat itself is reasonably comfortable. Storage space for odds and ends is limited, but the trunk is decent and the opening is large.

For a small car with a combination of fun-loving flair and daily-driver utility, you can't do much better than the 2017 Volkswagen Beetle. Use Edmunds to help find the perfect one for you.

2017 Volkswagen Beetle Hatchback Overview

The 2017 Volkswagen Beetle Hatchback is offered in the following styles: 1.8T Classic 2dr Hatchback (1.8L 4cyl Turbo 6A), 1.8T S 2dr Hatchback (1.8L 4cyl Turbo 6A), 1.8T SE 2dr Hatchback (1.8L 4cyl Turbo 6A), 1.8T Dune 2dr Hatchback (1.8L 4cyl Turbo 6A), 1.8T SEL 2dr Hatchback (1.8L 4cyl Turbo 6A), R-Line SEL 2dr Hatchback (2.0L Turbo 4cyl 6AM), and #PinkBeetle 2dr Hatchback (1.8L 4cyl Turbo 6A).

What do people think of the 2017 Volkswagen Beetle Hatchback?

Consumer ratings and reviews are also available for the 2017 Volkswagen Beetle Hatchback and all its trim types. Overall, Edmunds users rate the 2017 Beetle Hatchback 4 on a scale of 1 to 5 stars. Edmunds consumer reviews allow users to sift through aggregated consumer reviews to understand what other drivers are saying about any vehicle in our database. Detailed rating breakdowns (including performance, comfort, value, interior, exterior design, build quality, and reliability) are available as well to provide shoppers with a comprehensive understanding of why customers like the 2017 Beetle Hatchback.

Edmunds Expert Reviews

Edmunds experts have compiled a robust series of ratings and reviews for the 2017 Volkswagen Beetle Hatchback and all model years in our database. Our rich analysis includes expert reviews and recommendations for the 2017 Beetle Hatchback featuring deep dives into trim levels including 1.8T Classic, 1.8T S, 1.8T SE, etc. with careful analysis around pricing, features, performance, mpg, safety, interior, and driving and performance. Edmunds also offers expert ratings, road test and performance data, long-term road tests, first-drive reviews, video reviews and more.

Read our full review of the 2017 Volkswagen Beetle Hatchback here.
Our Review Process

This review was written by a member of Edmunds' editorial team of expert car reviewers. Our team drives every car you can buy. We put the vehicles through rigorous testing, evaluating how they drive and comparing them in detail to their competitors.

We're also regular people like you, so we pay attention to all the different ways people use their cars every day. We want to know if there's enough room for our families and our weekend gear and whether or not our favorite drink fits in the cupholder. Our editors want to help you make the best decision on a car that fits your life.

What's a good price for a New 2017 Volkswagen Beetle Hatchback?

Shop with Edmunds for perks and special offers on new cars, trucks, and SUVs near Ashburn, VA. Doing so could save you hundreds or thousands of dollars. Edmunds also provides consumer-driven dealership sales and service reviews to help you make informed decisions about what cars to buy and where to buy them.

Which 2017 Volkswagen Beetle Hatchbacks are available in my area?

2017 Volkswagen Beetle Hatchback Listings and Inventory

There are currently 1 new 2017 Volkswagen Beetle Hatchbacks listed for sale in your area, with list prices as low as $19,590 and mileage as low as null miles. Simply research the type of used car you're interested in and then select a car from our massive database to find cheap used cars for sale near you. Once you have identified a vehicle you're interested in, check the Carfax and Autocheck vehicle history reports, read dealer reviews, and find out what other owners paid for the 2017 Volkswagen Beetle Hatchback.

Shop Edmunds' car, SUV, and truck listings of over 6 million vehicles to find a cheap new, used, or certified pre-owned (CPO) 2017 Volkswagen Beetle Hatchback for sale near you.

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Why trust Edmunds?

Edmunds has deep data on over 6 million new, used, and certified pre-owned vehicles, including all models of the 2017 Volkswagen Beetle Hatchback and all available trim types: 1.8T SEL, R-Line SEL, 1.8T SE, etc. Rich, trim-level features & specs and options data tracked for the 2017 Volkswagen Beetle Hatchback include (but are not limited to): MSRP, available incentives and deals, average price paid, warranty information (basic, drivetrain, and maintenance), features (interior and exterior color, upholstery, bluetooth, navigation, cruise control, parking assistance, lane sensing, keyless ignition, satellite radio, folding rears seats,run flat tires, wheel type, tire size, sunroof, etc.), vehicle specifications (engine cylinder count, drivetrain, engine power, torque, engine displacement, transmission), fuel economy and MPG (city, highway, and combined, fuel capacity, range), vehicle dimensions (interior cabin space, vehicle length and width, seating capacity, cargo space). Edmunds also provides tools to allow shopper to compare vehicles to similar models of their choosing by warranty, interior features, exterior features, specifications, vehicle dimensions, consumer rating, edmunds expert review, safety rating, and color.

Should I lease or buy a 2017 Volkswagen Beetle?

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.

Check out Volkswagen lease specials
Check out Volkswagen Beetle lease specials