Skip advert
Advertisement
In-depth reviews

Volkswagen Beetle (2011-2019) review - Practicality, comfort and boot space

A ‘regular’ hatchback is more practical, but the Beetle is certainly not a lost cause

Overall Auto Express Rating

3.0 out of 5

Practicality, comfort and boot space Rating

3.0 out of 5

Find your Volkswagen Beetle
Offers from our trusted partners on this car and its predecessors...
Hassle-free way to a brand new car
Or are you looking to sell your car?
Customers got an average £1000 more vs part exchange quotes
Advertisement

The Volkswagen Beetle will never be as practical as traditional family hatchbacks, but it does a good job of out-performing rivals such as the MINI in this area, which is where it matters. The interior boasts plenty of stowage areas, including centre console cup holders, two glove compartments and deep door bins.

It’s comfortable up front too, with supportive seats and a plenty of adjustment so all sizes should be able to find a suitable driving position. The pedals and steering wheel are all evenly weighted, and visibility is good in all directions.

Advertisement - Article continues below

The controls are presented simply and the layout will be familiar to anyone used to other models in the VW range. The only real issues are a shortage of headroom due to that aggressive roofline, and body curves that mean close-quarter parking manoeuvres occasionally require an element of guesswork.

Size

At 4,278mm long, the Beetle is a little longer than a three-door Golf which measures up at 4,255mm. It’s also wider - 1,808mm versus 1,790mm.

The MINI three-door is quite a lot smaller at 3,822mm long and 1,727mm wide.

Leg room, head room & passenger space

If it wasn’t for the drastically sloping roofline adults might have half a chance of getting comfortable in the back of a Beetle. As it is, unless you’re ferrying kids about – Isofix child seat mounts are standard in the back and optional on the front passenger seat - the rear bench is best saved for your shopping. Access to the rear isn’t brilliant either, thanks to the three-door format – so in spite of its hatchback rear end it’s probably best to think of the Beetle as a lifestyle coupe, with occasional ‘plus-2’ seating.

Those after a Volkswagen Beetle Cabriolet should bear in mind that the back-seat passengers get even less space.

Boot

The Beetle offers 310 litres of boot space, which is 50 litres more than the latest MINI. The back seats are capable of splitting 50:50, and when they're folded, boot space is extended to 905 litres. Sadly though, the seats don’t fold entirely flat which makes the space less useful than it might otherwise be. There's a space-saver spare wheel rather than just a repair kit, which is a definite bonus.

Skip advert
Advertisement
Skip advert
Advertisement

Most Popular

‘Dacia Zen’ seven-year warranty brings added peace of mind
Dacia Duster - tailgate
News

‘Dacia Zen’ seven-year warranty brings added peace of mind

The value brand’s new warranty is also available on used cars, as well as for existing Dacia customers
16 Apr 2024
Car Deal of the Day: Mercedes EQC offers luxury EV motoring for £327 a month
Mercedes EQC - front cornering
News

Car Deal of the Day: Mercedes EQC offers luxury EV motoring for £327 a month

Mercedes’s EQC showed that the German firm was serious about electric cars and it’s our Car Deal of the Day for Monday 15 April
15 Apr 2024
New Nissan Qashqai gets angry, as best-selling family SUV receives aggressive facelift
Nissan Qashqai reveal - front
News

New Nissan Qashqai gets angry, as best-selling family SUV receives aggressive facelift

In addition to its new much sharper design, the Qashqai now features Google apps and voice assistant built in
17 Apr 2024