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 > Flat towing 2014 VW Beetle

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crichards47

Murrysville, PA

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Posted: 09/19/14 03:18pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

We have been flat towing a Smart Fourtwo for the last four years and it has been great - no problems. However, we now need a car with more seats and are considering a current model VW Beetle with manual gearbox. I have done some research and have received conflicting opinions (what a surprise!!). Blue Ox has a base plate for the 2012, 2013 and 2014 Beetle, so obviously these vehicles are being set up for flat towing. Remco confirmed that the five speed can be flat towed but not the six speed. They couldn't explain what the difference was. VW advised that the manual can be towed short distances only and recommend using a dolly otherwise.
I have seen late model Beetles being towed on the road but have not had the opportunity to talk to the owners for information so I am wondering if any Forum members have any experience or other guidance on this.
Thanks for any help. Charles Richards

mowermech

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Posted: 09/19/14 03:47pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

What does it say in the Owners Manual about recreational towing?


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Bumpyroad

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Posted: 09/20/14 05:45am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

Step A, go against manufacturer's recommendation and tow it.
Step B, replace transmission
bumpy





Butch50

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Posted: 09/20/14 10:56am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

When I looked at the dingy towing guide from Motorhome Magazine it does not show any VW of being capable of 4 down towable.

I have a Subaru xv Crosstrek on order and the reason for ordering it is to get the manual trans that is 4 down towable. This way I can go exploring some back roads when we get to a location. I love to explore the FS roads and see what is around the corner.

The Subaru I know is not a Jeep but it does have almost 9" of ground clearance so it can go pretty much any place I want to go and still get 30 MPG highway.


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Posted: 09/21/14 10:31am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

crichards47 wrote:

We have been flat towing a Smart Fourtwo for the last four years and it has been great - no problems. However, we now need a car with more seats and are considering a current model VW Beetle with manual gearbox. I have done some research and have received conflicting opinions (what a surprise!!). Blue Ox has a base plate for the 2012, 2013 and 2014 Beetle, so obviously these vehicles are being set up for flat towing. Remco confirmed that the five speed can be flat towed but not the six speed. They couldn't explain what the difference was. VW advised that the manual can be towed short distances only and recommend using a dolly otherwise.
I have seen late model Beetles being towed on the road but have not had the opportunity to talk to the owners for information so I am wondering if any Forum members have any experience or other guidance on this.
Thanks for any help. Charles Richards


Charles,
Well, I have had the opportunity to talk with MANY VW Beetle and Jetta TDI toad owners and, NOT ONE OF THEM have had any issues with their VWs at all, when flat towing them. As you've found out, VOA does NOT authorize ANY of its fleet to be recreationally flat towed. But, in just about all the conversations I've had with folks at RV Parks and Campgrounds who've pulled in with VWs in tow, have stated that they've talked directly with VW transmission technicians about towing stick versions of late VWs.

And they (the people towing) stated that the techs stated that there would be NO issues towing the stick versions. However, the techs could not put it in writing due to the fact that it would go against VOA and it's policies. The conversations with the techs apparently was enough to instill confidence in these owners.

Many I've spoken with had several thousand towed miles and all have been trouble free. I've owned two VW TDI Beetles and loved them both. They never went below 42 mpg, no matter how many people in the car or, A/C running or hills, whatever. And, talk about power. Those little TDI engines are not afraid of any grades, hills, windy roads etc. If it weren't for the fact that we need a truck to carry our Goldwing when we tow, we'd have one as a toad. The he.. with VOA, I like thinking outside the box.
Scott


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Bumpyroad

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Posted: 09/21/14 12:54pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

well if they have towed them "several thousand miles" I guess there should be no problem towing them several thousand miles.
bumpy

dcowley

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Posted: 10/20/18 05:53pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I just purchased a 2014 VW Beetle r line with manual transmission with hopes of towing behind RV. It's a keyless ignition so I still have questions about the steering wheel lock. Do I just leave the ignition on and go? I've found no work around for the electronic steering wheel lock as of yet. Thanks for any input

whemme

Spencer, IA

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Posted: 10/21/18 01:02pm Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I flat tow a 2016 VW Golf GTI with 6 speed manual transmission. My Golf was the guinea pig for Blue Ox to engineer and install a base plate for this car. However the Golf had locked steering requiring the key to be in the ACC position. I solved this problem by having a mechanic remove the steering lock pin from the steering stalk assembly. So far I have towed my GTI for over 8000 miles with no problems.

So that VW officially does not approve flat towing any of their models, their manual transmission models are being successfully towed by many owners.

* This post was edited 10/21/18 01:24pm by whemme *


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dcowley

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Posted: 11/04/18 07:05am Link  |  Quote  |  Print  |  Notify Moderator

I got this figured out and it was very simple once I took 5 minute quite time. Like I said earlier my 2014 VW Beetle R-line is keyless and every time I opened the drivers door to get out the steering wheel lock would engage duuuuh!

To tow it all 4 down:

1-Once your tow hitch is hooked up and safety cables attached; put the car in neutral and release the parking brake. Set up your Brake-Buddy or other breaking device. Close the drivers door.

2- Go to passenger side and get in. Turn the ignition on, this releases the steering wheel lock. Turn the ignition off. The steering wheel remains unlocked. Lock your doors (to keep someone from opening the drivers door.) Lock with button on door and not with FOB. Exit the vehicle from the passenger side and do not lock that door with FOB. As long as you enter and exit through the passenger door the steering wheel lock does not engage.

I've towed my 2014 VW Beetle R-Line with 6 speed manual transmission for over 5K miles now and all is good.

You can hear the steer wheel lock engage and disengage and its all predicated on the drivers door not being opened once the ignition is off. Make sure you understand what I'm saying and all is good for VW bug towing with manual transmission and key-less ignition.

* This post was last edited 11/15/18 04:29pm by dcowley *   View edit history

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