Jones Ford Wickenburg Compares 2018 Ford Mustang VS 2018 Volkswagen Beetle Near Wickenburg, AZ

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2018 Ford Mustang

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2018 Volkswagen Beetle

Safety Comparison

The Mustang Premium offers optional Pre-Collision Assist, which use forward mounted sensors to warn the driver of a possible collision ahead. If the driver doesn’t react and the system determines a collision is imminent, it automatically applies the brakes at full-force in order to reduce the force of the crash or avoid it altogether. The Beetle doesn't offer collision warning or crash mitigation brakes.

The Mustang Premium’s optional lane departure warning system alerts a temporarily inattentive driver when the vehicle begins to leave its lane and gently nudges the vehicle back towards its lane. The Beetle doesn’t offer a lane departure warning system.

The Mustang Premium’s optional driver alert monitor detects an inattentive driver then sounds a warning and suggests a break. According to the NHTSA, drivers who fall asleep cause about 100,000 crashes and 1500 deaths a year. The Beetle doesn’t offer a driver alert monitor.

Both the Mustang and the Beetle have standard driver and passenger frontal airbags, front side-impact airbags, side-impact head airbags, four-wheel antilock brakes, traction control, electronic stability systems to prevent skidding, rearview cameras, available blind spot warning systems, rear parking sensors and rear cross-path warning.

Warranty Comparison

The Mustang comes with free roadside assistance for 5 years 60,000 miles. Ford will send help if you run out of gas, need a jump start, lock your keys in or need any assistance on the road. Volkswagen doesn’t give free roadside assistance for the Beetle.

There are almost 5 times as many Ford dealers as there are Volkswagen dealers, which makes it much easier should you ever need service under the Mustang’s warranty.

Reliability Comparison

J.D. Power and Associates’ 2017 Initial Quality Study of new car owners surveyed provide the statistics that show that Ford vehicles are better in initial quality than Volkswagen vehicles. J.D. Power ranks Ford fourth in initial quality, above the industry average. With 7 more problems per 100 vehicles, Volkswagen is ranked 10th.

From surveys of all its subscribers, Consumer Reports’ April 2017 Auto Issue reports that Ford vehicles are more reliable than Volkswagen vehicles. Consumer Reports ranks Ford 4 places higher in reliability than Volkswagen.

Engine Comparison

The Mustang’s standard 2.3 turbo 4 cyl. produces 136 more horsepower (310 vs. 174) and 166 lbs.-ft. more torque (350 vs. 184) than the Beetle’s 2.0 turbo 4 cyl. The Mustang GT’s standard 5.0 DOHC V8 produces 286 more horsepower (460 vs. 174) and 236 lbs.-ft. more torque (420 vs. 184) than the Beetle’s 2.0 turbo 4 cyl.

Fuel Economy and Range Comparison

The Mustang EcoBoost’s standard fuel tank has a gallon more fuel capacity than the Beetle (15.5 vs. 14.5 gallons), for longer range between fill-ups. The Mustang GT’s standard fuel tank has 1.5 gallons more fuel capacity than the Beetle (16 vs. 14.5 gallons).

The Mustang has a standard cap-less fueling system. The fuel filler is automatically opened when the fuel nozzle is inserted and automatically closed when it’s removed. This eliminates the need to unscrew and replace the cap and it reduces fuel evaporation, which causes pollution. The Beetle doesn’t offer a cap-less fueling system.

Brakes and Stopping Comparison

For better stopping power the Mustang’s brake rotors are larger than those on the Beetle:



Mustang GT


Front Rotors

12.6 inches

15 inches

11.3 inches

Rear Rotors

12.6 inches

13 inches

10 inches

The Mustang’s standard front and rear disc brakes are vented to help dissipate heat for shorter stops with less fading. The rear discs on the Beetle are solid, not vented.

Tires and Wheels Comparison

For better traction, the Mustang has larger standard tires than the Beetle (235/55R17 vs. 215/55R17). The Mustang Premium’s optional tires are larger than the largest tires available on the Beetle (265/35R20 vs. 235/45R18).

The Mustang’s standard tires provide better handling because they have a lower 55 series profile (height to width ratio) that provides a stiffer sidewall than the Beetle’s standard 60 series tires. The Mustang Premium’s optional tires have a lower 35 series profile than the Beetle’s optional 45 series tires.

For better ride, handling and brake cooling the Mustang has standard 17-inch wheels. Smaller 16-inch wheels are standard on the Beetle. The Mustang Premium’s optional 20-inch wheels are larger than the 18-inch wheels optional on the Beetle.

Suspension and Handling Comparison

The Mustang has standard front and rear gas-charged shocks for better control over choppy roads. The Beetle’s suspension doesn’t offer gas-charged shocks.

The Mustang offers an optional driver-adjustable suspension system. It allows the driver to choose between an extra-supple ride, reducing fatigue on long trips, or a sport setting, which allows maximum control for tricky roads. The Beetle’s suspension doesn’t offer adjustable shock absorbers.

For a smoother ride and more stable handling, the Mustang’s wheelbase is 7.1 inches longer than on the Beetle (107.1 inches vs. 100 inches). The Mustang’s wheelbase is 7 inches longer than on the Beetle Dune (107.1 feet vs. 100.1 inches).

For better handling and stability, the track (width between the wheels) on the Mustang is .2 inches wider in the front and 4 inches wider in the rear than the average track on the Beetle.

Chassis Comparison

The front grille of the Mustang (except Performance Pack) uses electronically controlled shutters to close off airflow and reduce drag when less engine cooling is needed. This helps improve highway fuel economy. The Beetle doesn’t offer active grille shutters.

The Mustang uses computer-generated active noise cancellation to help remove annoying noise and vibration from the passenger compartment, especially at low frequencies. The Beetle doesn’t offer active noise cancellation.

Passenger Space Comparison

The Mustang has 3.8 inches more front legroom, 1 inch more front shoulder room and 3.2 inches more rear shoulder room than the Beetle Coupe.

The Mustang Convertible has 3.8 inches more front legroom, 1 inch more front shoulder room and 1.6 inches more rear shoulder room than the Beetle Convertible.

Cargo Capacity Comparison

The Mustang Convertible has a much larger trunk with its top down than the Beetle Convertible (11.4 vs. 7.1 cubic feet).

Ergonomics Comparison

The Mustang Auto offers a remote vehicle starting system, so the vehicle can be started from inside the driver's house. This allows the driver to comfortably warm up the engine before going out to the vehicle. The climate system will also automatically heat or cool the interior. The Beetle doesn’t offer a remote starting system.

When three different drivers share the Mustang Premium, the optional memory system makes it convenient for all three. Each setting activates different, customized memories for the driver’s seat position, suspension setting, power steering assist and outside mirror angle. The Beetle doesn’t offer a memory system.

On a hot day the Mustang’s driver can lower all the windows from a distance using the keyless remote. The driver of the Beetle can only operate the windows from inside the vehicle, with the ignition on.

The Mustang has a standard automatic headlight on/off feature. When the ignition is on, the headlights automatically turn on at dusk and off after dawn. The Beetle only offers an automatic headlight on/off feature as an extra cost option.

Standard air-conditioned seats in the Mustang Premium keep the driver and front passenger comfortable and take the sting out of hot seats in Summer. The Beetle doesn’t offer air-conditioned seats.

On extremely cold Winter days, the Mustang Premium’s optional heated steering wheel provides comfort, allowing the driver to steer safely and comfortably before the car heater warms up. The Beetle doesn’t offer a heated steering wheel.

To keep a safe, consistent following distance, the Mustang Premium offers an optional Adaptive Cruise Control, which alters the speed of the vehicle without driver intervention. This allows the driver to use cruise control more safely without constantly having to disengage it when approaching slower traffic. The Beetle doesn’t offer an adaptive cruise control.

The Mustang’s standard steering wheel mounted cruise control is close at hand. The Beetle’s standard cruise control is on an over-crowded turn signal stalk.

Recommendations Comparison

The Ford Mustang outsold the Volkswagen Beetle by almost seven to one during 2016.

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