Home Car Reviews 2005 Volkswagen New Beetle Review

2005 Volkswagen New Beetle Review

by Frank

This particular 2005 Volkswagen New Beetle is a GLS Turbo with a 5-spd manual gearbox, Platinum Gray exterior paint, and gray leather interior. It’s a very nice example with just over 125K miles on the odometer.

Listen, real quick, before we get started, I actually did a build & price review of the 2019 Volkswagen Beetle Final Edition. Yes, this year is the last year of production for the Volkswagen Beetle. So, if you’re interested in that video, I’ll go ahead and put a link below. You can see how far the Beetle has come since the 2005 model year.

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2005 Volkswagen New Beetle Overview

The 2005 Volkswagen New Beetle isn’t new anymore, but still smart and trendy. And as it’s a Volkswagen, it’s refined. The 2005 New Beetle blends German construction and performance with exceptional fit and finish, and it represents a fantastic used car value.

As in other retro cars, however, drivers and passengers must make some concessions for style. Interior ergonomics aren’t as good as the ones in a more traditional car, like a Volkswagen Golf, nor is there lots of trunk space.


The 2005 Volkswagen New Beetle is available as a coupe or convertible. Plus it comes with an assortment of gasoline- and diesel-fueled engines. For 2005, the coupe is offered in GL, GLS, GLS Turbo, and GLS Turbodiesel. The Turbo S model is no longer available. The convertible is offered in GL, GLS, and GLS turbo.

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The standard engine in the GL and GLS coupes and convertibles is a 2.0-liter inline-4 rated at 115 horsepower. The GLS Turbo is powered by a 1.8-liter turbocharged four-cylinder rated at 150 horsepower.

In 2005, Volkswagen introduces a brand-new diesel engine accessible only from the GLS Turbo coupe. The innovative 1.9-liter turbo-diesel employs high-pressure injection technology to produce 100 horsepower and run quieter than the last unit.

A five-speed manual transmission comes standard on all models. For 2005, all models offer an optional semi-automatic with Tiptronic.

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2005 Volkswagen New Beetle Features

2005 volkswagen beetle features

All 2005 Volkswagen New Beetles come very well equipped from the factory.


The base model GL models come with air conditioning with an integrated pollen filter; a six-speaker AM/FM/cassette stereo (10-speaker on convertibles) and for 2005 standard MP3 Player; central locking with keyless remote; anti-theft system; four-wheel disc brakes with ABS; tilt/telescoping steering column; clear-lens halogen projector headlamps with Daytime Running Lights; heated ability outside mirrors; cruise control; ability windows; and 205/55 all-season tires on 16-inch steel wheels and tires and a full-scale spare.

Leatherette upholstery is available as a no-cost option on coupes and is standard on the convertible. Options include CD changer prep, satellite radio service, and OnStar telematics. Security is enhanced with optional electronic stability control (ESP).


The GLS adds front halogen fog lamps, 16-inch aluminum wheels and tires with anti-theft wheel locks, a power sunroof, an eight-speaker AM/FM/cassette Monsoon sound system, pinch protection for the electric windows, the ability to open or close the sunroof with the driver’s door lock, and a center armrest with storage box.

The features list includes leather-trimmed chairs; heated front seats; a three-spoke, leather-wrapped steering wheel; leather-wrapped shift knob and handbrake grip; heated windshield washer nozzles; satellite radio and Xenon HID headlamps.

GLS Turbo

GLS Turbo and GLS Turbodiesel versions are almost identical in standard equipment with a few exceptions. The 1.8T involves a speed-activated spoiler on the rear window and an electronic locking differential (EDL) and ASR (anti-slip regulation). The turbo-diesel version gets the Engine Braking Assist standard, while all models can be ordered using the Electronic Stabilization Program (including ASR and EDL) as an alternative.

Seventeen-inch aluminum wheels and tires with 225/45 all-season tires are optional only on the 1.8T, along with the 6-speed automatic with DSG (direct shift gearbox) and Tiptronic is available only with the turbo diesel.


Safety equipment on all 2005 Volkswagen New Beetles includes driver and front passenger dual-stage frontal airbags, side-impact airbags mounted in the seatbacks, a safety-belt pre-tensioning and load-limiting system, and LATCH rear-seat tether anchorage points for securing a child protection seat. The side-impact airbags are designed to protect the driver and front-seat passenger.

2005 Volkswagen New Beetle Walk Around Review

2005 volkswagen new beetle walk around review

Soft top or hardtop, the 2005 Volkswagen New Beetle is built on the same basic platform as the Volkswagen Golf, a high-quality, highly rigid chassis. A rigid chassis results in a smooth, controlled ride with little noise, vibration, or harshness. Well-engineered crumple zones and other features enhance crash protection.

The Beetle is larger than it appears. The Beetle body is 161.1 inches in length and 67.9 inches wide, on a wheelbase of 98.7 inches, with a height of 59.0 inches. Build quality is fantastic. Gaps between doors, fenders, and other body panels are tight. Fenders and bumpers are made from unique dent-resistant plastic.

Outside door handles are easy to grab, feel good, and do not require inverting your hand to operate them. Switch indicators on the outside mirrors warn drivers alongside Color-keyed mirror housings and door handles add to the Beetle’s clean appearance.


2005 volkswagen beetle interior

The 2005 Volkswagen New Beetle’s sweeping roofline creates tremendous front-seat headroom. The convertible gives up just half an inch of front-seat headroom into the coupe. The Beetle’s deep dashboard can make you feel as if you’re driving the car from the back seat. You can’t see the hood or anything else but the street in front of the windshield.

Beefy front A-pillars (the post between the windshield and side window) can impede vision in tight corners. Small sun visors have no hope of blocking the sun coming in through the giant side windows.


The standard seats are comfortable and attractive. The flat design of the seat bottom makes it easy to get in and out, but side bolstering is lacking for driving quickly on winding roads. The typical fore-aft and rake adjustments are provided, while a lever lifts the seat the height up and down.

The rear seat is fine for a few adults on short trips. The shoulder and hip room are cramped from the coupe and significantly more cramped in the convertible, but there’s adequate rear headroom. There’s a fair amount of rear legroom in the convertible when the front passengers cooperate, and hardtop Beetles provide even more rear legroom.

Both of the Beetle’s front seats flip and pivot up and forward, making it easier to climb to the back seats. They then flip back to their original position, a pleasant memory feature.


The Beetle’s trunk is small, just 12 cubic feet, though the rear seats can be folded down to more than double that quantity. The convertible’s trunk is even smaller, just 5 cubic feet.

Dual cup holders in front of the shifter are tucked under the protruding center dash that houses the audio and climate controls. That arrangement initially appears to preclude tall drinks, but the cup holder platform cleverly swivels to the right to make space for this extra tall drink. Your companion will have to hold his or hers, however. Both the coupe and convertible benefit from a modern, sliding front center armrest with storage space.


The 2005 Beetle’s interior is attractive and, as in all Volkswagens, well-finished. A Myriad of materials is used to give the Beetle a high-tech look. I love the Painted metal configuration at the top edges of the doors, which matches the exterior paint.

In GL and GLS models, the standard cloth upholstery is tightly woven, resilient, and sporty, yet soft to the touch. Leatherette (vinyl) and leather are also available. The upper dash employs coarse, hard materials accented by smoother, softer surfaces elsewhere. A wide variety of interior color combinations is available. The curved, dimpled door handles look ultra-modern. The steering wheel feels good and features brushed aluminum spokes.

The small bud vase keeps a small flower looking fresh or holds a plastic daisy. The console seems like it may show dirt and wear over the long haul when ordered in light colors. The glove box seems impressive and has a small shelf on top for the owner’s manual, but its massive door belies the tiny, awkwardly shaped space inside.


The 2005 Volkswagen New Beetle feels tight and responsive. Its ride is smooth and sporty. Handling and braking are excellent. The standard 2.0-liter engine is smooth and quiet, fine for most families, but driving enthusiasts will find its acceleration performance lacking. The GLS 1.8 T is fun to drive. Its mild manners make for a pleasant ride around town; while its acceleration performance gives it sports appeal.

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