Volkswagen is a company who has been the champion of diesel cars in America, offering them almost consistently for over 30 years. But sometimes they do odd things in their product offerings and launches. In an announcement of pricing for the upcoming 2012 Beetle today, news came that the fuel efficient 2.0 TDI version will come along later after the initial launch of the car this fall. The TDI Clean Diesel may not come until calendar year 2012.
They did announce pricing for both the 2.5 liter gasoline model and the 2.0 gasoline turbo which should give some good ideas as to what the TDI will cost. The base 2.5 liter Beetle will start at $18,995. We find it curious why they do not offer the 2.0 liter four-cylinder naturally aspirated gasoline engine as standard as they do in the Jetta since it’s rated much higher for fuel efficiency.
And speaking from experience, the 2.5 liter five-cylinder gasoline engine is a thirsty rough one to live with. It’s powerful but rated at only 22 mpg city and 29 highway. We had one in a 2007 Beetle and it averaged about 19-22 city/highway in the real world. It’s really almost laughable with you consider you can buy a larger, heavier 2012 Mustang V6 with 305hp that can actually achieve 31 mpg.
The more powerful 2.0L turbocharged four cylinder gasoline model will start at $23,395. The turbo is also much more equipped with features which is likely to be more on par with what the TDI model will be. Volkswagen has been setting the equipment level of their TDI’s about mid-level in the past few years, which would ballpark the TDI Clean Diesel model pricing roughly the same as the turbo if not just a tad bit less. While VW has not announced TDI pricing we would guess that it will come in just under $23,000.
When the Beetle TDI comes available, it will be powered by Volkswagen’s highly efficient 2.0-liter turbocharged four-cylinder diesel engine that produces 140 horsepower and 236 lb-ft of torque. Volkswagen says this will be the most fuel-efficient Beetle ever, with an expected highway estimate of 40 mpg. However previous year models had much higher EPA ratings in the mid to high 40’s, though under a different EPA testing system. Many owners of the previous generation Beetle TDI’s have easily achieved 50+ mpg in highway driving.
The thing to keep in mind is that the 2012 Beetle is a more substantial car than before. It features sportier, more dynamic, and bolder styling than the previous model. It is also 3.3 inches wider, 6.0 inches longer, and 0.5 inches lower, giving the car a more muscular appearance that has a broad appeal.
The 2012 Beetle will come standard with the RCD 310 sound system with eight speakers; an optional premium VIII audio system features a CD changer, interface for SD cards, and a touchscreen. The Beetle will also offer concert-quality sound with an available Fender Premium Audio System, designed exclusively for Volkswagen. In a partnership that combines quality automotive engineering and quality sound engineering, Volkswagen and Fender have teamed up to bring the raw emotion of live music to the driving experience.
The Beetle includes Volkswagen’s advanced Intelligent Crash Response System that shuts off the fuel pump, unlocks the doors, and switches on the hazard lights if the car is involved in some types of collisions. The Beetle is also covered under the no-charge, 3-year/36,000-mile scheduled Carefree Maintenance Program.