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2013 VW Beetle TDI Convertible

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Photos by Cor Steenstra

The Beetle TDI uses the company’s 2.0-liter turbocharged, direct-injection Clean Diesel engine that makes 140 horsepower and 236 pound-feet of torque. The car has an EPA estimated fuel economy rating of 28 mpg city and 41 mpg highway when equipped with the manual transmission, making it the most economical convertible on the highway today.

Dual-clutch transmission advantages: DSG combines the comfort and ease-of-use of an automatic with the responsiveness and economy of a manual. The six-speed, transversely-mounted DSG unit features two wet clutches with hydraulic pressure regulation. One clutch controls the “odd” gears—first, third, fifth and reverse—while the other operates the even gears. Essentially it is two gearboxes in one.

With DSG, the set-up allows the next-higher gear to be engaged but remain on standby until it is actually selected. In other words, if the Beetle is being driven in third gear, fourth is selected but not yet activated. As soon as the ideal shift point is reached, the clutch on the third-gear side opens, the other clutch closes and fourth gear engages under accurate electronic supervision.

Since the opening and closing actions of the two clutches overlap, a smooth gearshift results and the entire shift process is completed in less than four-hundredths of a second. In addition to its fully automatic shift mode, DSG has a Tiptronic® function to permit manual gear selection.

Starting at $27,895, the TDI receives the following equipment that’s additional to the Beetle 2.5L’s: six-speed manual or six-speed DSG automatic transmission; leather-wrapped multifunction steering wheel; Keyless access with push-button start; a leather-wrapped gearshift knob; Sirius XM Satellite Radio; the Premium VIII touchscreen radio; and the auxiliary instrumentation cluster. The six-speed DSG dual-clutch automatic transmission is an $1100 option.

Beetle TDI Convertible with Sound and Navigation
With a base price of $29,195, this version takes the TDI’s standard equipment and adds the RNS 315 navigation system and the Fender Premium Audio System.

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