The Volkswagen Beetle convertible has always been an odd bird, bringing the joy of open-top motoring to the stylish coupe, but also losing some of the style by spoiling the Beetle's well-thought out lines with an awkwardly crumpled soft top hanging over the back end.
Volkswagen has pulled the digital veil back on the convertible variant of the 2013 Beetle Coupe, which was redesigned last year. Oddly, it seems the automaker has gone out of its way to hide that soft top with camera angles and conveniently positioned models. This is not a good sign.
This is about the best look at the new top in the provided set. Volkswagen claimed that it was sticking with tradition by keeping the cloth top and not moving to a hard shell, but it's fairly obvious that there probably wouldn't be ample space in the Beetle's abbreviated rear deck to store a conventional folding hard top.
The 2013 VW Beetle Convertible will be available with the 200-horsepower, 2.0-liter turbocharged engine (as indicated here by the dashboard gauge pod) with either a six-speed manual or DSG automatic transmission. The Beetle Coupe's 2.5-liter gasoline and 2.0 TDI engines will also be making return appearances in the U.S. market Convertible. No surprises here.
For the most part, it looks like the soft top still protrudes from the rear of the vehicle, only slightly less severely than the previous generations' did. Still, it's difficult to tell in these cleverly posed shots.
The Beetle's cloth top is motorized, retracting and revealing the sky in about 10 seconds, according to Volkswagen. The Beetle also features emergency rollover hoops that deploy in a fraction of a second to protect the passengers' heads and necks when a catastrophic roll is detected.
Closer shots of the folded top and a few pictures of the top in its upright position would be nice, but not available just yet. We'll have more details, photos, and pricing sometime before the 2013 Beetle Convertible's launch later this year. Will we see this drop top at the LA Auto Show in November? It's possible, so stay tuned.