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A very long and messy story, but we have somehow acquired out youngest daughter's beetle cabrio. I'm selling it, but in the meantime I've been cleaning and detailing it, and to be absolutely honest. much as I should hate it, I really actually quite like it. It's fun. Obviously deliberately designed to sound a bit like the old flat four, it handles and corners surprisingly well. It's retro and daft, but it does seem to bring out the best in people. I have never, ever driven anything else where so many people smile at you and let you out of side roads. That in itself slaughters journey times. I can't help but smile when I drive it. And yes, it's got the original flower in the vase.

yv04-6.jpg

yv04-2.jpg

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9 minutes ago, rabski said:

A very long and messy story, but we have somehow acquired out youngest daughter's beetle cabrio. I'm selling it, but in the meantime I've been cleaning and detailing it, and to be absolutely honest. much as I should hate it, I really actually quite like it. It's fun. Obviously deliberately designed to sound a bit like the old flat four, it handles and corners surprisingly well. It's retro and daft, but it does seem to bring out the best in people. I have never, ever driven anything else where so many people smile at you and let you out of side roads. That in itself slaughters journey times. I can't help but smile when I drive it. And yes, it's got the original flower in the vase.

yv04-6.jpg

yv04-2.jpg

Yes, I can see what youre saying but I cant help thinking..... Perhaps thats why they're smiling :D

And you can tell me to F @#*

28928702958_5abda9a5f3.jpg

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I really couldn't give a toss mate. I know it's crazy and I know what you mean. If I want to rag it, I've still got the SAAB, which is also a convertible and was originally ramped up to over 300 brake. At 160000 miles, a few of the horses have left the paddock now, but it's still not slow.

None of which matters.

Driving that stupid beetle is quite simply fun. That's something I'd forgotten.

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Posted (edited)

Unfortunately, the next-gen VW Beetle was a long way short of the icon the first ever was.

Edited by eddie-baby

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24 minutes ago, eddie-baby said:

Unfortunately, the next-gen VW Beetle was a long way short of the icon the first ever was.

Ah, but then 'iconic' is an odd word really. Something becomes iconic not through inherent worth, but through other means.

I am more than old enough to not only remember the first generation Beetle, but to have owned and run a few. They were, not to beat around the bush, utter crap.

Most had absolutely no performance at all, the ones that did soon exposed the lethal handling flaws. Mind you, they did at least have the decency to self-destruct both mechanically and by rapidly turning into iron oxide. They rusted worse than Lancias ever did, which I suppose is a tribute to VW's marketing in that they got away with it. The mechainicals were apalling. Unnecessarily complex and an utter pig to fix.

No. The new one is not an icon. It's built on Golf underpinnings, so it's relatively reliable, handles resonably and doesn't disintegrate into a pile of rust at the first sight of anything wet.

I'm pragmatic about cars these days, and after many years in the motor trade in a past life, I see things somewhat differently and without rose-tinted spectacles. I'm happy to take a slightly less 'iconic' car that's quite fun to drive, reliable and looks reasonable. I see that now 'original' Beetles have attained classic status, and people are asking utterly insane money for pieces of shit that are rusty, unreliable and handle like Bambi on roller skates.  Thank you, but no thank you.

Icons are things you stick on the wall in churches.

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9 hours ago, rabski said:

Ah, but then 'iconic' is an odd word really. Something becomes iconic not through inherent worth, but through other means.

I am more than old enough to not only remember the first generation Beetle.................................

 

Yes,

And I don't disagree with anything you say. The new model is a better car in every conceivable way, but there is just 'something' about the older hunk of junk that gave it not just the edge but takes it to another level of recognition/desirability (for most or some anyway). I actually don't mind the newer model and there are 'some' I actually think look good, I don't think I'd ever own one though, and the flower in a vase thing was just a very bad idea if you ask me. The way the hood folds as well is just an afterthought and a cop out of bad design again in my opinion, really gives it that pram look, but they're not the only ones to have suffered this nonsense, even the old Jaguar XK managed to get this wrong on what could otherwise be considered a stunning car.   

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2 hours ago, eddie-baby said:

Yes,

And I don't disagree with anything you say. The new model is a better car in every conceivable way, but there is just 'something' about the older hunk of junk that gave it not just the edge but takes it to another level of recognition/desirability (for most or some anyway). I actually don't mind the newer model and there are 'some' I actually think look good, I don't think I'd ever own one though, and the flower in a vase thing was just a very bad idea if you ask me. The way the hood folds as well is just an afterthought and a cop out of bad design again in my opinion, really gives it that pram look, but they're not the only ones to have suffered this nonsense, even the old Jaguar XK managed to get this wrong on what could otherwise be considered a stunning car.   

Nor do I really disagree with you to be honest.

I get misty-eyed over more than a few 'classic' cars, but I'm afraid the original Beetle is not one of them for me. The camper van, I get (I originally wrote 'the camper I get', but I knew where that would go). That's an icon to me, and still practical and fun, though not without rust and reliability issues, it has to be said. And they're as slow as hell.

There's an early Beetle convertible locally with a 'for sale' sign in the window. From a distance, looks lovely. Pale blue with a brown hood. Get up close and it's a different story altogether. Rust all over the place. Apalling repaint, and loads of trim either manky or missing. Price? £7950.

Looking around, that's not mad pricing for the market, but it is for me. The 2004 one runs like clockwork and apart from the daft folded roof (I absolutely agree with you) looks good. It owes me (us) about £1500, though a major service and cam belt change added a fair lump to that.

I might just keep it. No idea what, but there is something about it that's just fun. Most of my driving these days consists of being stuck in traffic jams on the M6 or A14 roadworks, so anything that lifts the spirit a little is worth it. I can enjoy the same in the SAAB, but somehow, although mightily slower, the Beetle is in some ways more enjoyable.

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8 minutes ago, rabski said:

Looking around, that's not mad pricing for the market, but it is for me.

It just boils down to the value factor again, its only worth what someone is willing to pay, and if someone is willing to pay it then that's their choice, it's obviously worth it to them (or the next buyer).

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I think that Beetle suffered from being released at a similar time to the 'new' Mini. Otherwise they may have had better success. Reminds me of something though...

German-Empire-celebrating-the-1st-of-May-Hitler-arriving-in-a-Mercedes-car-for-the-main-manifestai.jpg

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4 hours ago, Cambs12 said:

I think that Beetle suffered from being released at a similar time to the 'new' Mini. Otherwise they may have had better success. Reminds me of something though...

German-Empire-celebrating-the-1st-of-May-Hitler-arriving-in-a-Mercedes-car-for-the-main-manifestai.jpg

The history is quite interesting. Volkswagen (people's car) is frequently associated with Hitler and the Nazi regime, but it's not that simple. The fundamentall design stems from much earlier and ironically took much inspirationfrom the Czech Tatra. This to the extent that VW paid Tatra a substantial sum of money in the 1960s for what was effectively copyright dues.

Hitler was always seen in public in Mercedes. Although (partly) designed by Ferdinand Porsche, the Beetle was actually only produced for public sale under British management after WW2.

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