2012 LA Auto Show: Volkswagen Beetle R-Line will go on sale in the United States

Article by Christian A., on November 28, 2012

At the 2012 LA Auto Show, Volkswagen announced that the new Beetle R-Line will also be available in the United States. Set to hit the dealerships in early 2013, the new Vw Beelte R-Line will only be offered on the Turbo model and will feature a number of exterior and interior enhancements in order to be differentiated from the standard models.

This includes a more aggressive front bimper with black surfaces and chrome-framed turn signals, a new rear bumper with an integrated air diffuser, new R-Line logos, 19-inch “Tornado” aluminium-alloy wheels as standard and new Bi-Xenon headlights with LED DRLs. The interior will also be updated and customers will get custom stainless-steel kickplates, a steering wheel badge, a unique color dashboard panel, and contrasting-color stitching on the seats, shifter knob, and handbrake lever.

No words about the price yet! For those who don’t know, the R-Line is developed by Volkswagen R GmbH especially for drivers who want the sporty and aggressive styling of the Volkswagen R models but without the additional performance.

There are a number of brands that are instantly recognizable to customers. Examples of these are the Ray Ban Aviator, the iPhone, and of course, the Coke bottle. In the automotive world, one of the most recognizable designs is that of the Beetle. The question for Volkswagen then was how to reinterpret, much less reinvent, the design of the Beetle? This is, after all, a design that has become independent and is very recognizable. There is an answer to the question and this is to understand not just the product but ultimately the brand itself. Thus for the new Beetle, it was no surprise that Volkswagen Group Design Chief Walter de Silva and Volkswagen Brand Design Chief Klaus Bischoff were part of the group that made this happen.

The two fully understood what the task entailed and thus the goal was to “design a new original.” For the team involved, this project was challenging and at the same time thrilling. It was also inspiring. The first task for the team had to be under the guidance of Bischoff. There were two important points the team considered. The first was that the main priority would be to put dynamic proportions on the new model.

Second was that the profile of the original Beetle would have to be developed even more, especially when compared to the New Beetle that was released back in 1998. What made this project all the more interesting was that some of the members had their very own air-cooled Beetles. In fact, it was found out that the Beetle had become a cult car among the brand’s many young designers.

The end result was that this Wolfsburg-based company would come with the 2011 Beetle’s final design. This design reveals a more contemporary vehicle which pays homage to the automotive seed from which the whole corporate group sprouted from. The similarity is almost uncanny. As proof, take the new Beetle in a room, place the first generation of the Beetle beside it, shine a light just above the roof, and then look at it from the side.

In its rear section, in particular the lines are identical. Even then, the brand reveals that each component was remade. The new Beetle shows more muscle, is more dynamic, and even bolder. When compared with the 1998 New Beetle, everything is truly different.

The new Beetle is more athletic and shows more self-confidence. It has been made wider with the profile becoming lower. The front bonnet is also longer with the windscreen in the front being positioned farther back. The windscreen also has an incline that is clearly steeper.

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