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2010 Vw Beetle: Full Modern, More Upscale

Amidst the board-room shakeups and in-flux product plans following the quasi-takeover by Porsche, a few things have nevertheless stayed on course at Volkswagen Central in Wolfsburg, Germany. One such project is the replacement for the not so new New Beetle, which is reportedly on track for a 2010 launch, said Mark Stehrenberger of Motor Trend.

According to the sources, the 2010 VW Beetle will once again be styled in California and engineered in Germany. It will be sharing a platform with the next-generation Rabbit and the new Scirocco. The next-generation Beetle, on the other hand, is an attempt to deviate from the 'chick car' image attached to it in the previous years.

To create a more upscale and full modern look and style, a VW pool of designers use sleek and elegant body parts mated to enhanced and hi-tech auto equipment. The next-gen Beetle will be made bigger than the current model. It will also make better use of the extra interior space.

The upcoming Beetle will be equipped with improved a VW window switch, roof, fenders, engines, a radiator, car accessories, striking design cues, and other noteworthy modifications.

The charming bug-eye aura, rounded contours, and spherical roofline are binned in favor of a more aggressive, and more conventional, style with a sportier deportment and coupe-style roof as illustrated in the drawings. The new Beetle is being penned to easily adapt for a wide variety of model variants. The upcoming Beetle is the reason why the German automaker has hesitated bringing the Scirocco, an almost identical car, stateside.

Additionally, a soft-top cabrio will come shortly after the hatchback's launch, with a sport wagon with small rear doors reportedly coming shortly thereafter. Other variants on the table include a micro-van, a pickup, and a sport wagon-based crossover, with hotted-up versions also part of the product mix, said Stehrenberger.

The plan to get rid of the iconic classic shape of the Beetle may result to backfiring if performed - it is an understandable move for VW to attempt to produce a sub-brand using the Beetle name. The strategy can be likened to BMW's venture with its Mini lineup.

The Beetle was widely scorned for its odd styling, rough ride, weak power, and high noise levels. But the car was ultimately the longest and most produced for a solitary design. It remained a hot seller even as rear-wheel drive traditional subcompacts were improved until ultimately replaced by front-wheel drive models. The German automaker intends to preserve the hot-selling factor of the car hence the plan of reviving the same in a more upbeat and upscale manner.

In creating the New Beetle, VW did an awesome job of seizing the essence of the old variant in both form and function. Since then, the New Beetle, launched in 1998, has undergone some minor facelifts but little else, leaving its interior design and architecture to sour as the auto competition leapt ahead with more tidy executions and enhanced materials.

"In principle, I like the New Beetle save for its interior. Yes, ergonomically it's comfortable enough but please, less plastic expanses and fewer diminutive audio buttons would be start," said Stehrenberger. "Despite its shortcomings, the quirkiness of the Beetle's living space will endear it to most if not all owners, as will its fun factor. Buyers seeking practicality and efficiency over style and nostalgia will likely pass on a Beetle. This front engine, front-wheel-drive version of Germany's famed folks-wagon is completely modern but it's no Honda Fit when it comes to cargo space and frugality." But Beetle aficionados should delight the fact that VW is making the iconic car much better.

About The Author Anthony Fontanelle is a 35-year-old automotive.buff who grew up in the Windy City. He does freelance work for an automotive magazine when he is not busy customizing cars in his shop.
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