Recall Alert: Nearly 38,000 Volkswagen Cars

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Vehicles Affected: Volkswagen is recalling some model-year 2014-15 Jetta sedans manufactured March 28 to Nov. 24, 2014, model-year 2014-15 Passat sedans manufactured April 7 to Nov. 18, 2014, model-year 2014-15 Beetle coupes and convertibles manufactured March 31 to Nov. 27, 2014, and model-year 2015 Golf and GTI hatchbacks manufactured July 1 to Nov. 20, 2014.

The Problem: A sealing cap at the fuel rail could fail, allowing fuel to leak into the engine compartment. In the presence of an ignition source, a leak can result in a fire.

The Fix: Volkswagen will replace the fuel rails with new parts for free.

What Owners Should Do: VW hasn’t yet provided an owner notification schedule. Owners can call Volkswagen at 800-893-5298 and reference recall number 24Bi, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration's vehicle-safety hotline at 888-327-4236 or go to www.safercar.gov for more info.

Need to Find a Dealer for Service? Go to Cars.com Service & Repair to find your local dealer.

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By Jennifer Newman | December 31, 2014 | Comments (1)

Do Men Buy the Volkswagen Beetle?

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Let's take a trip back to November 2010 when talk-show host Oprah Winfrey announced that everyone in her audience would be receiving a redesigned 2012 Volkswagen Beetle, though the design was kept under wraps at the time. It seemed an obvious choice for Volkswagen to call on the Beetle's trusty female base to create excitement about its iconic "chick car."

Related: 2014 Volkswagen Beetle Gains Features With Premium Package

Months later, when the 2012 Beetle emerged from under wraps in an advertisement announcing, "It's a boy," people were talking about the car's masculine look. A streamlined, flattened body and removal of the previous model's bubbly, cute features (ahem, flower vase) sparked talk about VW abandoning its female-centric look to appeal to more buyers.

"The current-generation Beetle was designed to be a modern reinterpretation of the original model," Darryll Harrison Jr., Volkswagen's public relations manager, said in an email. "The current design is also bolder than the outgoing model ... successfully bringing more customers into the VW family."

At water coolers and online, men cheered the move, but did they buy it? With a couple years of sales under its belt, we took a look at the Beetle's numbers to see if its newfound masculinity paid off.

By Sara Lacey | December 30, 2014 | Comments (4)

Recall Alert: 2013-15 Volkswagen Beetle

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Vehicles Affected: Approximately 7,000 model-year 2013-15 versions of the Volkswagen Beetle manufactured between June 13, 2013, and July 3, 2014

The Problem: When the affected vehicles are driven over hard surfaces or strike a pothole, the glass sunroof may break, possibly causing injury to the vehicle's occupants or a crash.

The Fix: Dealers will replace the sunroof for free.

What Owners Should Do: Volkswagen will notify owners starting Dec. 19. Owners can call Volkswagen at 800-822-8987 or the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration at 888-327-4236 for more information.

Need to Find a Dealer for Service? Go to Cars.com Service & Repair to find your local dealer.

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By Jennifer Geiger | December 8, 2014 | Comments (0)

Recall Alert: 2011-2013 Volkswagen Jetta, 2012-2013 Beetle

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Vehicles Affected: Nearly half a million Volkswagen cars, including more than 400,000 model-year 2011-13 Volkswagen Jetta sedans and nearly 42,000 model-year 2012-13 Beetle hatchbacks and convertibles

The Problem: A rear or side-rear collision could damage the rear suspension trailing arms; if this damage is not repaired, the trailing arm could fracture suddenly, resulting in a loss of vehicle stability and increasing the risk of a crash, Volkswagen said in a statement about the voluntary recall. No accidents or injuries related to the issue have been reported, the automaker said.

The Fix: Volkswagen will notify owners, and dealers will inspect the rear suspension of vehicles that have been involved in rear or side-rear collisions to determine whether the trailing arms have been damaged. On cars that do not have damaged trailing arms, the dealer will fit a sheet-metal inlay on the rear trailing arms, which will emit a distinctive sound if the car is later involved in a rear-end collision and will be a signal for the owner to take the car back to a dealer for inspection. Work will be done for free. The automaker has not announced a notification schedule, but said it will contact all owners of affected vehicles and instruct them to arrange an appointment.

What Owners Should Do: Owners can call VW at 800-893-5298 for more info.

Need to Find a Dealer for Service? Go to Cars.com Service & Repair to find your local dealer.

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By Matt Schmitz | October 17, 2014 | Comments (0)

2014 Volkswagen Beetle Gains Features With Premium Package

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Volkswagen has announced a new Premium Package for the 2014 Beetle hatchback and convertible. Available in July for 1.8T and TDI diesel trim levels, the Premium Package includes features not previously available for the Beetle, as well as content that had only been offered on the R-Line trim until now.

Volkswagen Beetle Dune Photo Gallery

The package's all-new features include automatic headlights, automatic climate control, the RNS 510 navigation system with satellite radio, rain-sensing windshield wipers, and a cradle for the iPhone 5. Also included are bi-xenon high-intensity-discharge headlights, a sport suspension for 1.8T models, gray mirror caps, R-Line bumpers, an auto-dimming rearview mirror, a Fender premium stereo and contrast stitching. Three exterior colors are offered: white, gray and black.

The Beetle 1.8T hatchback with the Premium Package costs $28,175 while the TDI diesel costs $30,175. The 1.8T and TDI convertibles are priced at $31,575 and $33,575, respectively. All prices include an $820 destination charge.

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Manufacturer images

By Mike Hanley | June 27, 2014 | Comments (13)

Recall Alert: 2014 Volkswagen Jetta, Beetle, Beetle Convertible, Passat

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Vehicles Affected: About 26,452 model-year 2014 Volkswagen Jetta, Beetle, Beetle Convertible and Passat cars equipped with a 1.8-liter turbo engine and torque converter automatic transmission.

The Problem: The O-ring seals between the oil cooler and transmission may leak fluid, which could contact a hot surface and result in a fire. The automaker said it is not aware of any fires, injuries or accidents attributed to this issue.

The Fix: Volkswagen began notifying owners earlier this month, and dealers will replace the O-ring in the transmission oil cooler for free. On April 9, the automaker issued a mandatory stop-sale order on all of the affected models manufactured between Feb. 1, 2014, and now.

What Owners Should Do: Owners can call Volkswagen at 800-822-8987, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration's vehicle-safety hotline at 888-327-4236 or visit www.safercar.gov for more info.

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By Matt Schmitz | April 22, 2014 | Comments (0)

VW Beetle Dune Concept Car Needs More Dune, Less Beetle

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Search for "Beetle dune buggy" online and what pops up are knobby-tire, flared-fender, jacked-up vintage Beetles ready to blow through the top of a dune. The Volkswagen Beetle Dune concept introduced at the 2014 North American International Auto Show in Detroit is a modern "Baja Bug" for the 21st century, though this Beetle Dune doesn't look ready to jump much more than a shallow curb.

More 2014 Detroit Auto Show Coverage 

I'm no way an old Beetle enthusiast — they're a die-hard bunch — but this concept goes about 75 percent in the direction of what I'd imagine for a modern dune-buggy concept.

By Joe Bruzek | January 14, 2014 | Comments (0)

Volkswagen Beetle Dune Photo Gallery

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Volkswagen's ski-toting dune buggy turned heads at this year's Detroit auto show, trading the Beetle's cute looks for aggressive wheels and trail-ready styling.

More 2014 Detroit Auto Show Coverage

The Beetle Dune concept has been raised a couple inches and wears yellow-orange metallic paint along with 19-inch alloy wheels, glossy and matte black trim, and chrome details. Based on the R-Line version of the Beetle, it uses the model's 210-horsepower, turbocharged four-cylinder engine and six-speed dual-clutch automated manual transmission. Check out the gallery below.

By Jennifer Geiger | January 13, 2014 | Comments (9)

Volkswagen Beetle Dune Concept at the 2014 Detroit Auto Show

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Looks like: VW gives its cute hatchback an edgy off-road look
Defining characteristics: This Beetle was raised 2 inches for more ground clearance
Ridiculous features: VW engineers bolted a pair of skis on the back … for dune skiing?!
Chances of being mass-produced: Similar to a desert mirage, it's likely this car will exist only in your imagination, though Volkswagen said, "the Dune concept shows the potential for a new production version of the sportiest Beetle ever." 

If you thought the only look the Beetle could rock was cute, think again. The Beetle Dune concept debuting at the 2014 North American International Auto Show reveals the hatchback's rugged side with a raised body and all-terrain-looking exterior treatments. Volkswagen says the look harks "back to the VW Bugs that conquered beaches and dunes in times past," but engineers had a different climate in mind — they bolted a pair of skis to the roof. 

More 2014 Detroit Auto Show Coverage

The concept was built off of the sporty R-Line Beetle and uses the model’s 210-horsepower, turbocharged four-cylinder engine and six-speed dual-clutch automated manual transmission. This new concept builds off of the New Beetle Dune concept that was unveiled at the 2000 Los Angeles Auto Show, and VW says the 2014 version is "a lot more feasible," though VW has not confirmed production plans for the Beetle Dune. 

By Jennifer Geiger | January 10, 2014 | Comments (8)

Are There Any Small Diesel Cars?

"Are there any small diesel cars?"

Anonymous

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Chevrolet, Volkswagen and Audi currently offer a diesel engine in compact-size cars.

The current compact diesel cars are the Audi A3 TDI and Volkswagen Beetle TDI, Golf TDI and Jetta TDI, all of which use VW's turbocharged direct-injection 2.0-liter four-cylinder engine. The Chevrolet Cruze Clean Turbo Diesel went on sale in select markets in June and is scheduled to be available nationally in the fall. It uses a turbocharged 2.0-liter four-cylinder with EPA-estimated 27/46 mpg city/highway, which is the highest highway rating of any non-hybrid passenger car. The combined city/highway rating of 33 mpg, however, is one short of VW's TDI.

You can read our first-drive impressions of the Cruze diesel here. The Cars.com Vehicle Recommender, found here, can help you determine which diesel-powered car is best for your needs and budget.

Have a car question you'd like us to answer? Send us an email at tips@cars.com.

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By Rick Popely | August 11, 2013 | Comments (0)

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