#PinkBeetle in the City
As someone whose favorite color is grey (it used to be charcoal), I can tell you right now that on any other day, I wouldn't be caught dead driving a pink car. But when my boss asked me if I wanted to attend an exclusive Volkswagen event, I found myself wholeheartedly responding, "Uh, yeah!" to the words "lunch" and "LA" before I knew the words "Pink" and "Beetle" would follow.
You don't need to tell me the 2017 VW #PinkBeetle is a limited edition; I don't care that it's the first car ever to be named after a social media hashtag. I get to travel to LA for free lunch — probably organic, farm-to-table and a little bit bougie — and test drive a brand spankin' new car. You got me, even if pink isn't really my color. I rarely get to do fun "outside" stuff like this on a work day. I'm there, 10 minutes faster than what Google Maps predicted.
I arrived with butterflies in my stomach, ready to devour free appetizers. Only when the restaurant hostess directed me to VW's table did reality sink in: "Oh, crap, I have to talk to strangers" ...strangers who actually got invited to this thing because of their social media/blogging "influencer" status. I, on the other hand, "influence" a mere 500 followers on Instagram. Could they sniff out my inferior Klout score? Would I stick out like a sore thumb?
It turns out, these women not only had awesome style; they were also genuinely nice, and I had no problem enjoying myself and participating in conversation.
Style, you say? Yes. Besides their plus-ones, I think I was the only guest in attendance who was not a fashion/lifestyle blogger. "I'm with a car magazine," however, seemed to suffice in making a good first impression. Darryll, the VW PR guy hosting the event, explained to our group that the #PinkBeetle has helped the company reach audiences outside the automotive world and in the realm of lifestyle and fashion.
"If you think about it," Darryll said, "Volkswagen has been a part of many people's experience with cars. When people find out I work for Volkswagen, a lot of them tell me, 'Oh, my first car was a Jetta!' or 'I used to drive a Beetle!'" Case in point:
With that said, it seems like a no-brainer for VW to start owning their status as a monumental part of many car owners' lives. The #PinkBeetle definitely goes with a certain lifestyle. The bloggers seemed completely in their element, making sure their environment was staged perfectly, snapping pics and Boomerangs right and left. They looked fabulous.
I will admit — I felt pretty cool cruising around the Arts District in that cutesy little whip. I had never driven a convertible before; with the top down, heated seats on, I enjoyed a perfectly cozy ride with the wind blowing through my hair.
The #PinkBeetle is styled to the tee. The interior's magenta accents and plaid seats are subtle while still making a statement.
Leave the real statement-making to the Fresh Fuschia metallic paint and HID headlights/LED daytime running lights (which never fail to look like googly eyes, cute lashes and all). The #PinkBeetle will stick out like a sore thumb passing that boring white truck and basic mini SUV, but this bug was meant to be noticed.
So would I want to own one of these? While the style is personally not my first choice, the 4-cylinder engine is also turbocharged. Performance-wise, the #PinkBeetle drove so smoothly; it felt like butter. On a good day, I might consider trading in my daily driver (an '09 Ford Focus) for the smoother ride, even if it is pink.
Special thanks to Volkswagen for hosting this fun event!
Browse the gallery below for more shots of both the #PinkBeetle convertible and coupe.