Vw Beetle R will get 270 hp in Europe, U.S. version will be less powerful

Article by Christian A., on July 14, 2011

The upcoming Beetle R that will be offered in Europe will be fitted with a 2.0-liter turbocharged powerplant that will have an output of 270hp. Many fans got disappointed when Car and Driver announced recently that the vehicle will not have the same power rating as the Golf and Scirocco and that it would only be able to manage 240hp.

When details about the Golf R20 meant for the U.S. market came out, observers suspected that only the U.S. model will have this power rating as it would have to meet EPA emissions regulations.

German car magazine Auto, Motor und Sport had reported that the new Beetle R will have a power rating that’s comparable to the Golf R and Scirocco R at 270hp. As this car would be a front-wheel drive model, no advanced four-wheel drive will be offered.

Since the Beetle R has this configuration and is powered by an engine that’s easily tunable, it’s believed to have motorsport applications. The reason why this won’t be a small, retro coupe with AWD is that the hatchback has to protect its premium image and the heritage stemming from the R32.

In the U.S., the Golf R is priced at over $30,000, while the Beetle Turbo is priced at $24,165. It’s believed that the Beetle will have a price that’s in the middle of these figures. The price of the Beetle is higher in Europe. It’s expected that the Beetle R will have nearly the same price as the Scirocco.

The Volkswagen Beetle has been considered as one of the most recognizable and independent products in the world. Thus, reinventing such a product could prove to be such a difficult challenge. However, design chiefs for the Volkswagen Group, Walter de Silva, and for the Volkswagen Brand, Klaus Bischoff, came into agreement that to hurdle such challenge, there is a need to understand both the product and brand. Specifically, they just need to design a new original Beetle.

Bischoff took lead of the new team that will design the new Volkswagen Beetle. This team -- viewing the challenge as thrilling and challenging – took on the task of developing the original Beetle profile more than on the 1998 New Beetle and prioritized giving the latest reincarnation of the vehicle dynamic proportions. It comes as no surprise that some members of the team are owners of Beetles which have become a cult car among younger designers at the German carmaker.

Their love and passion for the Beetle resulted to the final design of the 2011 reincarnation. In fact, when compared to the first Beetle, the 2011 version features nearly identical line on the rear sections. When compared to the 1998 New Beetle, there is an astonishing difference between the two models, with the 2011 Beetle rendered as older, more dynamic and more masculine. Bischoff remarked that the 2011 Beetle is defined by a clean, dominant and self-confident sportiness.

He added that the 2011 Beetle has a lower profile, a longer front bonnet and a steeper incline. Moreover, the 2011 Beetle had its front windscreen shifted further back. Compared to the New Beetle, the 2011 Beetle has eliminated the defining three semi-circles on the front wing, rear wing and the domed roof. Also, the 2011 Beetle has a lower roof profile, similar to that of the Ragster concept car unveiled in Detroit in 2005. Dimension-wise, the 2011 Beetle is 84 mm wider at 1,808 mm wide; 12 mm lower at 1,486 mm; and 152 mm longer at 4,278 mm – thereby resulting to new proportions. Since the 2011 Beetle is longer, its roof has been extended further and its front windscreen has been shifted back, with the rear section following the contour of the original Beetle.

For the 2011 reincarnation, the C-pillar has become the new focal point. The increase in length was complemented by an increase in its wheelbase and track width. While the 2011 Beetle boasts of a new degree of individuality, its styling adheres to the Volkswagen design DNA as formulated by de Silva and Bischoff. This design DNA is evident on the horizontally focused front bumper and the front air inlet as well as on the line between the A-pillar and C-pillar and the straight lines of the bonnet edges. Moreover, this design DNA is clearly manifested on the styling of the rear lights. The design of the 2011 Beetle may be decades more advanced than the original Beetle, but still it inherits all of its typical styling characteristics.

After all, the Beetle, the Microbus and the original Golf had their fair share of influencing the current VW design DNA. The 2011 Beetle still features the unique bonnet shape, round headlights, the flared wings, sides and door sills and the large wheels that could be specified up to 19 inches. Customers may even avail of the optional bi-xenon headlights with LED daytime running lights. As standard, 2011 Beetle models powered by TSI engines with 118 kW (160 PS) and 147 kW (200 PS) come with rear spoiler integrated in the design. Available in the three equipment lines "Beetle", "Design" and "Sport," the rear spoiler features a black top surface and a body-colored underside. The new 2011 VW Beetle could be finished in any of the 12 available colors like Denim Blue and Saturnyellow.

Topics: vw, vw beetle, sports car

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