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Report: Next generation Volkswagen Beetle coming next year

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Filed under: Volkswagen, Rumormill, Design/Style

volkswagen-beetle-1631010242456751600x103rd verse, same as the first. Not entirely, of course, but when the subject is the Volkswagen New Beetle, the looks of the car are largely a foregone conclusion. Just like the current New Beetle evokes the original Type 1 with its roundy-round fat-fenderedness, the next version, expected to go on sale in May 2011, will continue paying homage to the classic form. The outward differences will be a less-arched roofline that's more like the Ragster concept, and reportedly more surface detailing to break up the current car's vast expanses of featureless sheetmetal.

The new roofline and a stretch in wheelbase, plus a bump in width, will allow more logical interior packaging. Underneath all the retro, the next Beetle will again be running hardware shared with the Jetta. The UK's Autocar reports that its sources indicate the Beetle's dynamics will improve, with the ride becoming more supple. The familiar strut front suspension and beam rear axle layout will return, though a multi-link rear suspension will go into top-zoot models for sportier reflexes. Powertrain combinations in North America will likely be only two or three choices, possibly a 2.0T at the top, a TDI for the economy conscious, and the Jetta's 2.5-liter inline five-cylinder standard otherwise. A hybrid powertrain may also be in the works.

While the concept of a "new" Beetle conjures visions of more of the same, Autocar's rendering looks fresh, and even within the constraints of a 70-year-old design brief, there's room for new expression.

[source: Autocar | Rendering: Autocar]

Report: Next generation Volkswagen Beetle coming next year originally appeared on Autoblog on Fri, 19 Mar 2010 10:29:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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New VW Beetle chases Mini

A second generation of Volkswagen’s reborn Beetle will be launched next year with more focus on dynamics and less on retro styling.

To be previewed as a concept at the Los Angeles motor show in November, the production Beetle will go on sale in the UK in May 2011. A cabriolet will follow about a year later.

See autocar.co.uk's artist's impression of the next VW Beetle

As with today’s Beetle, the car will be assembled at VW’s Puebla plant in Mexico, alongside the next Jetta. The two cars share their front-drive underpinnings and some driveline combinations.

This gives the Beetle a reworked chassis with wider tracks and a longer wheelbase than today’s model. Insiders are confident it will better the current Beetle’s dynamics, with a more compliant ride.

Suspension is MacPherson struts at the front and a torsion beam at the rear. However, the 210bhp 2.0-litre range-topper will have a multi-link rear to improve handling.

We’ve yet to see how VW’s design team has chosen to update the Beetle, but sources close to design boss Klaus Bischoff indicate that the 2005 Ragster concept provides hints.

Describing the new car’s design, one VW insider said, “It is more contoured, with additional structuring and defined feature lines used to help to break up the simple surfacing and unadorned character of the current model.”

The new Beetle will have a similar roofline to the Ragster’s. “The screen angles are less extreme and the roof structure is less rounded than it is at the moment,” said our source.

But much of the design will continue to draw heavily on the original Beetle, with rounded headlights and tail-lamps, separate wings over each wheel and a high waistline.

Volkswagen has also developed a much wider range of exterior options for the Beetle. “We’ve recognised the need to provide buyers with the opportunity to individualise their cars,” said our source. “This is especially important on the Beetle.”

In response to criticism of the Beetle’s packaging - particularly the depth of the dashboard and the lack of rear space - VW has thoroughly reworked the interior. The wider tracks and longer wheelbase increase space, but a lower roof reduces head room. Boot capacity will rise, to a nominal 250 litres.

Engines will include a 105bhp 1.2, a 160bhp 1.4 and a 210bhp 2.0 litre. A US-bound 170bhp 2.5-litre five-cylinder is not destined for Europe. Diesels will include the new 105bhp 1.6 and a 140bhp 2.0 litre.

A hybrid is also planned, with a similar drivetrain to that of the Jetta CC from this year’s Detroit show: a 150bhp turbocharged/supercharged 1.4 with a 27bhp electric motor.

Greg Kable



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The newest Volkswagens all look great, and based on the rendering, this new Beetle should be wicked cool. I liked the Ragster, this looks similar... sportier, more masculine than the current car. Can't wait to see the production version.

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