Top positive review
11 people found this helpful
good overall, a few annoyances
on July 1, 2008
As an overview of the Beetle suspension, brakes, and chassis, this book was excellent. The text is very comprehensive, clear, and useful, and there are many great photos and drawings. If you want to learn about this topic, I do recommend this book.
Here are a few annoyances to be aware of though:
1. I would not say this is a "how to" book, despite the title. This is a subject overview, to give the reader basic familiarity of a wide range of topics. I've noticed a number of "how to" books about cars, and this is not the only one that has stretched the truth in this way. I'm guessing it is the publishers who select such titles ... to help sales?
2. Similar to annoyance #1, while sections of the book do cover "modifications" and "high performance", I would not say that these points are covered in any depth. Again, it is at the overview level.
3. The book is advertised as having 128 pages. Well ... that includes all of the sheets of paper before the content of the book actually starts (title page, copyright page, etc). It also includes about 15 pages (!) of advertisements (of other books by the same publisher). So the content of the book is more like 110 pages.
4. The book is priced at $26, whereas other books of similar content and similar size sell from $13 to $17 typically. Because this book is published in the UK and imported to the US (where I am), perhaps that has jacked the price up. However, the value of the book is on par with the $13 - $17 books.
5. This is just a nitpick, but the photo on the cover shows the front of a Beetle with what looks to be a coilover suspension. No such modification is mentioned in the book. (If I am viewing the photo inaccurately, please feel free to comment.)
Despite these points, they are but annoyances for the shopper to be aware of. If you are looking for a detailed book on "how to modify your Beetle for high performance", maybe this is not the book (and I might guess there is not one single book that would fill that bill entirely by itself). However, for a quite well executed overview of the topic, this book has my recommendation.
Finally, as to the level of the writing, I found it appropriate for someone who knows something about car suspension, brakes, and chassis, although not necessarily about the Beetle. In reading this book, I learned a lot about how the Beetle is put together, but nothing really about suspension, brake, or chassis concepts.