Order books are now open for UK fans to get the Volkswagen GSR model. It was 40 years ago that the original Beetle GSR was launched in Europe. The Beetle GSR, which features a distinct design and potent 210 PS turbocharged engine, was presented at the 2013 Chicago Auto Show. The Beetle GSR is a true limited edition, with only 3,500 samples to be available around the world.
Of this figure, 100 of them are meant for UK buyers. The famous predecessor of the GSR is the ‘Yellow-Black Racer’ based on the Beetle 1303 S. It was introduced 4 decades ago. NB ‘GSR’ is short for ‘Gelb-Schwarze Renner’, the German term for ‘Gold-Black Racer’.
Just 3,500 units of the original model were produced too. What Volkswagen accomplished was to make a reinterpretation of the concept of the 1970’s GSR for the modern generation. Yellow was chosen for the color of the new version’s body, similar to the previous GSR. Matt black was used on the bonnet and the bootlid of the 1973 Beetle as well as on its bumpers.
It also received black trim strips under the side windows and black/yellow side stripes above the door sills. The old and new versions of this model are linked by the use of yellow and black. The new Beetle GSR uses black for its bonnet and bootlid as well as its roof and the exterior mirror trims.
The car gets a distinct silhouette on top of the side sills due to its black/yellow stripes with ‘GSR’ lettering. The GSR appearance is completed with yellow painted bumpers in the new R-Line design and a bigger than standard yellow and black rear spoiler.
Those who like subtlety will appreciate that the new Beetle GSR is available in Platinum Grey and Black. The older Beetle didn’t have this option.
To attract attention, the older yellow/black Beetle had to offer only 50 PS to make a splash in the compact car segment. But the current market requires much more than that to matter. Volkswagen claims that its new GSR model is powered by a 2.0-litre turbocharged 210 PS engine that enables the vehicle to accelerate from zero to 62mp in only 7.3 seconds.
The automaker also asserts that it can reach a top speed of 142 mph, 280 Nm of torque from 1,700 rpm to 5,200 rpm, and return a combined fuel economy of 38.7 mpg. It can emit 169 g/km of CO2. Those who buy the new Beetle GSR can choose either a six-speed manual or DSG gearbox. The manual Beetle GSR has a price tag of £24,900 (OTR RRP) with a £1,500 premium for DSG. Deliveries will start this September.