Don I was suprised Tom and Ray didn’t “dope slap” you. Those old VWs are truly TERRIBLE cars, slow, dangerous, no HEAT, loud, smelly, and I could go on. Remember they are 1930’s technology. Do your self a favor, buy a Red Miata or some other modern(ish) car that trips your trigger. In the long run you will enjoy it more. I’d still take a trip, but what the heck, do it in comfort and relative safety. This from a guy with an 80’s Porsche, a not to distant cousin of the VW. Have FUN!!
I didn’t hear the show, but if you kept the things in good running order including the air hoses and the exhaust, air cooled beetles were reasonably well-powered, not much louder or smellier than any other car of their time and had heat that was more than adequate for a vehicle of their size (though the buses were a different story). If you have a later one with disc brakes and the improved suspension, they weren’t any more dangerous than any other compact car of the era, though granted that’s something of a dubious distinction. I’m not saying they’re anywhere close to the standards of a modern car, but they’re not the deathtraps some people think they are either.
Miatas are nice, but only if driving it is the only part of the experiance of ownership you care about. Plus, if you’re over 6ft tall you can’t fit in them, which is not a problem you’ll have with an old VW!
Don just needs to make sure he likes the old VW, instead of liking the IDEA of an old beetle. A friend of mine drives the '61 he bought in '62, daily. He LIKES old VWs. There’s a difference.