Posts Tagged ‘VW’

Bidding Farewell to the New Beetle (Design Critique)

May 10th, 2010 1 comment

      In 1994 VW showed a concept car that was immediately recognizable as drawing its inspiration from the vintage Beetle.  Originally ‘dubbed the Concept One (pun intended), the car would be modified into the production New Beetle.  While a successful design in many regards, this reborn Beetle failed to fully capture the spirit of the original.  Now facing its final model year after 13 long years of production, the New Beetle looks as aged as any of its contemporaries from 1998. Read more…

2009 Volkswagen CC

March 3rd, 2010 No comments

Road Trip!

      The peace and serenity of Monday morning was interrupted by Dye making an announcement that we had to drive to Asheville, NC, tonight! An Imola Red BMW M Coupe just hit Ebay and he had to have it. So before all productivity went flying out the window we grabbed the keys to the Volkswagen CC that just arrived and pointed the bow south. We then spent the next 10 hours of drive time thoroughly discussing the merits of adding an M Coupe to the personal fleet. Read more…

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2009 Volkswagen Tiguan

March 3rd, 2010 No comments

It Lacks The Go Anywhere Ability Of Its Big Brother, But It’s Much More Fun To Drive

    If you are planning on picking up a new Tiguan to serve as a smaller, more fuel-efficient alternative to your go-anywhere Touareg be prepared for a new experience: getting stuck. That’s because Volkswagen’s second SUV is far more Honda than Hummer. Yes, it can be equipped with all-wheel drive, but you’ll only have 6.9 inches of ground clearance to work with, same as our front-wheel drive tester. Exactly none of the more capable Touareg’s hardware (air suspension, three locking differentials, low-range transfer case) is passed down to the Tiguan. But that detail only irked us when the Tiguan got itself stuck—twice—during our late December test. That’s because the rest of the time we were driving the thing like it was a GTI in maternity clothes. A fact that took us by surprise even though Volkswagen’s own press materials refer to the Tiguan as the “GTI of compact sport utility vehicles”. Read more…

2009 Volkswagen Jetta SportWagen

March 2nd, 2010 No comments

An Entry Level Wagon That Impresses

    In the American Hierarchy of Transportation the station wagon ranks just above the moped in desirability, and the entry level station wagon: just above a riding lawnmower. Nevertheless, Volkswagen continues to be one of the few automakers brave enough to offer the unloved body style in its Jetta lineup. We recently spent a week in one and came away believing what we always have: wagons offer the people and cargo capacity to meet most people’s needs and drive better than any crossover/SUV. Read more…

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2007 Volkswagen Eos

February 28th, 2010 No comments

Aren’t Greek Goddesses Supposed To Be Beautiful?

     We wanted to like the Eos, we really did. After all, it has one of the slickest convertible roofs ever designed and matches a smooth and powerful V6 engine to our beloved DSG transmission. Why then, didn’t it earn our affection? It comes down to our core belief that convertibles should be beautiful cars, and the Eos simply isn’t. Read more…

2006 Volkswagen GTI

February 24th, 2010 No comments

The Almost Audi?

    This is not your run-of-the-mill Volkswagen Rabbit. This is the so-called friend of Fast VW GTI. No cute face here. Like the racy Volkswagen Jetta GLI that we spent some time in last fall, the face is familiar but the demeanor is polar opposite. The question is does the Rabbit-based GTI produce the smile-per-mile quotient that the GLI did? Read more…

2006 Volkswagen GLI

February 23rd, 2010 No comments

Gotta Love It   

     The latest Jetta is a competent car but its ultra-reserved styling and serious lack of go power combine to make it an ultra serious bore to drive. It’s the automotive equivalent of watching Sen. Joseph Lieberman give a speech about the latest techniques in stem cell research. Needless to say, the enthusiasts among us aren’t knocking down VW’s doors looking for beige 5-cylinder Jettas. Volkswagen is smart enough to know this and that’s precisely why the GLI exists. It packs strong turbo power, decidedly unreserved 18” wheels, and it’s not available in beige. For the time being the GLI is the sportiest offering in the VW lineup, at least until the new GTI arrives, so we had high expectations. Did we find some substance under all that style or is the GLI little more than a cosmetic package? Keep reading. Read more…

2006 Volkswagen Jetta

February 23rd, 2010 No comments

Practical With A Buzz

    With the domestic automakers finally paying attention to their breadwinner family sedans, it is becoming increasingly necessary for the imports to keep their offerings fresh. Our first sample of the new batch, the Jetta, is setting the pace, with the Golf and Passat following any day now. Read more…

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2006 Volkswagen Passat 2.0T Value Edition

February 23rd, 2010 1 comment

Who Needs A V6?

    The Passat used to be Volkswagen’s entry in the affordable family sedan market, but the past few years have seen the once affordable German sedan drift upwards until the current V6, and especially the former W8, landed firmly in entry-level luxury sedan territory. Add in the luxo-liner Phaeton and the plusher-than-ever Jetta and it looks like VW has forsaken its history as a builder of affordable transportation. Read more…

2005 Volkswagen Touareg TDi

February 18th, 2010 No comments

This Isn’t Your Typical Vee-Dub

    There might be a cute face on the front of this one, but there is no Bug hiding behind that smile. Underneath that gentle demeanor is more grunt than any Yank bargained for. At least according to the spec sheet. But numbers don’t contact the pavement, rubber does. So what happens when a homegrown Red, White, and Blue farm boy gets behind the reigns of a German steed on western soil? Read on and find out. Read more…

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