Before you look at the 2016 Volkswagen Beetle Dune, take a moment to put your cynicism away.
The next few hundred words are not about considering a rational purchase. Rather, the Beetle Dune is about something that makes you laugh – for better or worse. I’m driving the Beetle Dune for a few days, and it’s already proven to a laugh and a head-turner.
Here are some first thoughts about the appearance package that makes the Dune, and the rest of the Beetle.
‘Hey, is that all-wheel drive?’
That’s what a man on the street shouted to me while I was creeping through traffic. Fortunately I was moving fast enough to avoid telling him the truth. The Dune may be a jacked Beetle, but it isn’t supposed to hide some off-road prowess. It doesn’t seem to mind gravel lots, however.
But it is Sandstorm Yellow
This Dune-exclusive color is… polarizing, to say the least. Some say it’s cool, others think it looks like the aftermath of too much cake at a kid’s birthday party. I’d like to note here the Dune also comes in white or black.
UnpluggedA photo posted by Zac Estrada (@zacestrada)” style=”font-family: Arial,sans-serif; font-size: 14px; line-height: 17px;”>Jul 8, 2015 at 12:49pm PDT
Hard plastics abound, as they have since this new, new Beetle arrived four years ago. It doesn’t matter so much on this more roughed-up Dune, but I expected the interior to have improved more as it has on Americanized products like the Jetta and Passat.
I clearly remember when a Beetle Turbo was a hot, eccentric little thing. The new and prolific 1.8-liter turbo four that’s the base engine for lots of VWs is a supremely competent motivator, even if it seems to lack a real fire in its gut. But the torque is plentiful and works pretty well with the six-speed automatic – the only choice for the Dune.
For the people
For right around the $25,000 mark, the Beetle Dune is pretty well equipped, with front and rear parking sensors, backup camera, Apple CarPlay and Android Auto and automatic headlights. And I haven’t really missed features like automatic climate control and keyless entry and start that much.
Despite the styling gimmick that is the Dune package, I’m sensing some honesty in the Beetle. I hope it’s not fleeting.
But what are your questions about the Beetle Dune? Sound off in the comments.