When you last heard from our four seasons 2013 Volkswagen Beetle Turbo Convertible, it was busy soaking up the Southern California sunshine after we sent it away to escape the Midwest winter. But when the frigid weather finally broke in our part of the country, our Michigan-based staffers were suddenly eager to get back behind the wheel of our bright-red Beetle.

Lucky for us, Tim Jennings—husband of editor-in-chief Jean—generously volunteered to make the trek back across the country in the Bug. Jennings reported an incident-free journey, with a few rants and raves to share about the Volkswagen. The 2.0-liter engine’s turbo lag was among his list of negatives, as was the car’s subpar stability in a heavy rainstorm that forced him to slow his pace. But he did find the seats to be reasonably comfortable over a few 800-mile days, and also said that the Beetle made it up Colorado’s steep Vail Pass in sixth gear, a testament to the turbo four-cylinder’s low-end torque.

Now that our year with the 2013 Volkswagen Beetle Turbo Convertible is coming to a close, the reappearance of the sun has made some staffers remember why they liked the Beetle Convertible in the first place.

“Now that winter has finally released its grip, it’s a shame that the Beetle is leaving us,” said copy editor Rusty Blackwell. For his Easter weekend with the Beetle, he took his two young daughters out for a ride, which meant installing two child seats in back. Although attaching the various LATCH tethers and anchors wasn’t easy due to the lack of wiggle room, Blackwell did report that his family had plenty of top-down fun in the Beetle, although he noted that “lower speeds make things much more pleasant for rear-seat occupants, especially when those occupants are three and five years old.”

For the 2013 Volkswagen Beetle’s last road trip, associate web editor Eric Weiner made a quick jaunt to Philadelphia, where he purchased a convertible of his very own, a 2001 BMW Z3. Since he didn’t have anyone in the back seat, Weiner had no qualms about spending about half of his 18-hour round-trip highway drive with the top down. “If I were to say one thing to sum this car up, it’s that it should be forbidden to drive it with the top up,” Weiner declared. “With the top down cruising on the highway, the Beetle is a lot of fun. The wind isn’t terribly obtrusive with the windows up, and I could even carry on phone conversations using the Bluetooth connection without having to scream. The Beetle is a car that wants you to be happy, and I was definitely enjoying it as I twisted through the mountain passes of western Pennsylvania.”

So our 2013 Volkswagen Beetle Turbo Convertible’s twelve-month stay with us is ending on a high note (and with the top down). It’s been across the country and back, and went on road trips everywhere from Martha’s Vineyeard to Milwaukee to Montreal. Stay tuned for the four seasons wrap-up to hear more about our twelve months with the Beetle Convertible.

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