2013 Volkswagen Passat TDI

2013 Volkswagen Passat TDI Solves The Riddle

At your local VW dealer, you can get a Passat with a 170 horsepower, 2.5-liter, five-cylinder engine or a 280 horsepower, 3.6-liter VR6, but that’s so common. The real auto enthusiasts and tree-clingers among us will opt for the 2.0-liter four-cylinder Clean Diesel that grunts out 140 horsepower and 236 ft-lbs of torque. And why not choose the six-speed manual transmission to achieve 31/43 mpg city/hwy.? As loony as it sounds, a TDI with a manual transmission is a pretty sporty ride. My partner is rarely one to fight for driving rights on long trips, but he refused to hand over the helm. Diesel driving is intoxicating

2013 Volkswagen Beetle Turbo Convertible (photo by Jeff Stork)

2013 Volkswagen Beetle Turbo Convertible Turns Heads In California

Last summer, I drove the restyled Volkswagen Beetle Turbo and came away impressed — especially with the more masculine, 356-like styling, upgraded interior, and the spirited performance that reminded me of the first- and second-generation GTIs I owned back in my college days.

2013 Nissan JUKE NISMO

Cool Cars Blow Into The 2013 Chicago Auto Show

Los Angeles and Detroit are two of the largest auto shows in North America, but automakers often save some big news for Chicago. From a new little diesel to a Superman sedan, big man van, and Texas-sized truck, there was a lot to see at the 2013 Chicago Auto Show, which wrapped up last week. Here are some of the highlights:

2013 Volkswagen Beetle Convertible

2013 VW Beetle Convertible: Not Just Another Retro Drop-Top

Although Volkswagen kicked off the whole retro thing in 1998 with the “New Beetle”, it doesn’t want you to think of the current third-generation Bug in those terms. To be honest, the New Beetle was anything but retro. Like the latest iteration, it rode on the most-advanced Golf architecture, driven by an engine over the front-driven wheels. It looked almost futuristic. With a new design that bridges the future-bubble with its iconic ancestor, the 2013 Beetle Convertible evolves.

2013 Volkswagen Golf R

2013 Volkswagen Golf R Is A Po’ ‘Mo’s Porsche

My former boss, who is still afflicted with a Saab 900 Turbo he purchased new in ’87, came to my office looking for the keys to the Golf R I was driving. Apparently, it’s on his short list of new cars. He’s also a fan of the Audi A5, BMW 3-Series coupe, and various Porsches. The fact that somebody who understands serious German pedigree puts the R on his list tells you a lot about the R. Think of it as a po’ ‘mo’s Porsche.

2013 Volkswagen Beetle Cabriolet

2013 Volkswagen Beetle Convertible: For Droptop Divas & Turbocharged Tough-Guys

Regardless of any gender stereotyping, this new Beetle Convertible is a solid, high-quality vehicle with a lot to offer someone looking for a relatively affordable, sporty-ish, small car.

2013 Volkswagen Jetta Hybrid (photo by Sam Miller-Christiansen)

2013 Volkswagen Jetta Turbo Hybrid: The First Athletic Hybrid?

Probably the best thing I can say about the Jetta Turbo Hybrid is how quickly I forgot the car was a hybrid at all.

2012 Volkswagen Passat

2012 Volkswagen Passat TDI: A Purpose-Driven Ride

The Passat TDI is a purpose-driven ride. It’s meant to be a comfortable, mid-size cruiser that gets phenomenal fuel economy, and it reaches those goals with ease.

Volkswagen E-Bugster concept

What’s Wrong With Retro? The VW Beetle Vs. The Chrysler PT Cruiser

In the July 9 issue of Automotive News, J. Mays declared that retro designs for automobiles have become passé.

Why should that matter? Because this announcement comes from the very man who spawned a huge retro trend with his 1998 design for Volkswagen’s New Beetle. The popularity of that design led to other retro-tinged imitations, such as BMW’s MINI Cooper, the Fiat 500, the Chevrolet Camaro, the Dodge Challenger, and many, many more.

2012 Volkswagen Beetle

The 2012 Volkswagen Beetle Undergoes A Sex Change

At the beginning of the 2012 model year, the Volkswagen Beetle went through a sex change. I didn’t even know it was transitioning, but the print ads made it pretty clear.