2010 Volkswagen New Beetle Interior Review

Note: This interior review was created when the 2010 Volkswagen New Beetle was new.


Interior: 6.6

The 2010 Volkswagen New Beetle's cabin is big on quality, but small on space. Though several auto writers find the front row offers enough room for the driver and passenger, the coupe and convertible's rounded design limits rear-seat space and cargo room.  

  • "Typical VW, with high-quality materials predominant, even if others are catching up with Volkswagen's once class-leading take on dash plastic." -- Automobile Magazine
  • "Cabin decor shows high style with quality plastic panels. Poor side-window sealing had one test convertible whistling in the wind. A second suffered detached roof-liner pieces and a cracked roof-release latch." -- Consumer Guide


There is no room to stretch out in the New Beetle, either in the front or rear rows. Up front, space is limited by the car's expansive dashboard. Reviewers say that two people technically fit in the back seats, but don't recommend exiling passengers to the cramped rear quarters for too long. On the plus side, the New Beetle comes with standard features like leatherette seat trim and heated front seats, which are upscale features for an affordable small car.

If you’re looking for more space, consider the Mini Cooper. Its rear seats aren’t very comfortable, but its front row is surprisingly spacious. For comfortable seating all around, look at the Honda Fit, which provides enough rear-seat room for tall passengers to sit comfortably.

  • "The back seat is fine for a couple of adults on short trips. Shoulder and hip room are cramped in the coupe and significantly more cramped in the convertible, but there's decent rear headroom, more in the convertible than in the hardtop... There's a reasonable amount of rear legroom in the convertible when the front passengers cooperate, and hardtop Beetles offer even more rear legroom." -- New Car Test Drive
  • "Legroom [in the rear] nearly vanishes with the front seats set far back. Headroom is nonexistent for those over 5-ft-6. The narrow cabin is snug even for children. Entry and exit are among the best in class by virtue of wide doors and front seats that tip up and forward. It's still not terribly easy, however." -- Consumer Guide

Interior Features

The New Beetle's standard features include heated front seats, which are rare for an affordable small car, an auxiliary input jack, satellite radio, three-spoke leather steering wheel and leather shift knob. Only a few optional features are available: a power sunroof, a six-disc CD changer and an iPod adapter.

A downside is the New Beetle's deep dashboard, which several reviewers criticize for taking up too much space in the front row.

  • "Mostly user friendly, but the tiny tachometer is hard to read. The audio controls are undersized, too. A standard tilt and telescopic steering wheel is nice, but the driver's hand on the manual gearshift can easily collide with the dashboard just ahead." -- Consumer Guide
  • "An expansive dashboard featuring a huge circular speedometer seems to dominate the cabin space up front, while the car's bubbly body pinches inward tightly against rear occupants." -- Edmunds


The New Beetle coupe provides 12 cubic feet of cargo space with all seats in use and 27.1 cubic feet with the rear seat folded. However, the convertible is much less useful. It provides only five cubic feet of cargo room, and its rear seats don’t fold down.

  • "Roof slope limits space beneath the hatch, but rear seats fold nearly flat to open up good room. Convertibles' separate trunk is quite small in size and opening, but it's usefully shaped and holds more than expected, as long as it's carefully loaded. Skimpy cabin storage for small items." -- Consumer Guide
  • "Dual cup holders in front of the shifter are tucked under the protruding center dash that houses the audio and climate controls. That arrangement at first appears to preclude tall drinks, but the cup holders platform cleverly swivels to the right to make room for that grande cappuccino. Your companion will have to hold his or hers, however." -- New Car Test Drive

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