2014 NAIAS: Vw Beetle Dune Concept wants to be a crossover

Article by Christian A., on January 13, 2014

At the 2014 North American International Auto Show (NAIAS) in Detroit, Volkswagen unveiled the Beetle Dune Concept, a Beetle with a cool offroad look or a Beetle that wants to be a crossover. Wearing an Arizona yellow/orange metallic paintwork, the Vw Beetle Dune Concept comes with flared black wheel arches, a chrome-plated underbody protection and side trim strips on top of the sills, which are based on the legendary running boards of the original Beetle in order to underline the classy and sporty impression.

The vehicle was designed for those who love sandboarding or skiing. The skis are mounted to the outside of the trunk lid. To do this, the outer parts of the rear spoiler swivel; the skis are then placed in the spoiler, then it is closed to clamp them in place.

At the top, the skis slide into a receptacle in the specially developed roof spoiler, where they are secured by an 0.8-inch-wide belt. The roof spoiler is painted in high-gloss black, like the entire surface surrounding the transparent panoramic tilt/slide sunroof.

Inside, we find the dashpad painted in the same color as the exterior, an infotainment system that incorporates a 7.7-inch touch screen, special seats upholstered in “Titan Black” leather and center surfaces made of “Ceramique” colored “Gobi” breathable sport fabric.

Under the hood, there is a 2.0-liter TFSI engine that generates 210 hp and is bolted to a six-speed DSG dual-clutch automatic transmission. The beetle dune as a manufacturer estimated fuel economy rating of 23 mpg in the city and 29 mpg on the highway.

Dune concept previews the possibility of the sportiest version of the Beetle. It is wrapped in a yellow-orange metallic color dubbed as “Arizona,” with its two-part wheel well extensions offset in black matt finish similar to those on the VW Cross models. On top of the main matt parts are the so-called "blades" that are 1.5mm thick elements seemingly hovering above the large wheel housings, thanks to the fact the matt and glossy parts are not in contact with each other. Featuring a semi-hexagonal cut-out, the wheel housings help widen the Dune concept by around 24 mm on each side, which means the design study now has a width of 1,856 mm, a length of 4,290 mm (plus 12 mm) and a height of 1,536 mm (plus 50 mm).

The new Beetle Dune concept also features tracks that are wider by 29 mm on the front (to 1,607 mm) and by 29 mm on the rear (to 1,573 mm). The concept also features a low wheel pitch of 33 mm, with the 19-inch wheels wrapped in 255/45 tires with a diameter of 723 mm. These 19-inch wheels come with a five-aluminum spoke design similar to that of the 18-inch "Twister" Beetle wheels. These wheels have black painted interior spaces, a polished aluminum ring and a VW logo centrally located on the hub.

As designed, the wheel well extensions of the Dune changes over into brushed aluminum sill trim panels, which are joined to the chrome-plated underbody protection panel.

These side sills, which are finished in glossy black on the section where they join to the body, are just below the Beetle’s signature side trim strips, also in glossy black finish. The Dune logo is located in front of the rear wing. Meanwhile, the door mirror housings of the Dine are vapor-coated in aluminum, with their black foot cleanly integrated into the window triangle of the A-pillar.

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Topics: vw, vw beetle, concept, naias

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