All-new VW Beetle hits Shanghai

Monday, 18 April 2011 2:49 PM

2012 VW Beetle

The all-new for 2012 VW Beetle. You can have wheels up to 19inches, more inner space (with sat-nav) and a 65.7mpg diesel, or the 197bhp, turbo petrol motor from the Golf GTI

Over twenty-one million VW Beetles later and the all-new, next generation Beetle - that’s set to sell all over the world - gets an international unveiling this week at motor shows in Shanghai and New York, and a suitably groovy MTV event in Berlin. And while it’s longer, wider and lower than the previous "new" car, it’s apparently also been styled to reflect more of the original car that first saw light in 1938; known only as the Volkswagen. The cheeky nicknames came later.

These larger, bigger than a Golf, dimensions; 4,278mm long (+152mm), 1,808mm wide (+84mm) and 1,486 tall (-12mm), and wider track width and longer wheelbase (2,537mm) mean there’s more room in every direction in the new car; good news as its predecessor was a little cramped out back and up top. Boot capacity is now up to a useable 310 litres.

Interior-wise, the 4-seater cockpit also harks back to the original car with two-tone painted panels and painted accents, while three trim levels - Beetle, Design and Sport – offer a great deal more choice than the old “peoples’ car” ever did. Bespoke customer options are also available.

We’ll get a choice of four engines in the UK; three petrol and one diesel. The 1.6-litre 105 PS BlueMotion Stop/Start, turbo-diesel will be the pick of the frugal crop turning in 65.7mpg and carbon dioxide emissions of 112g/km, on the combined cycle.

The range-topping engine, the 2-litre 200 PS, will feature standard XDS electronic differential lock as fitted to the Golf GTI, and with nearly 200bhp pumping through the front wheels it’ll need all the extra grip it can get. VW’s smooth 7-speed dual-clutch transmission can be optioned.

In between the frugal and the fast sits the 1.2-litre TSI 105 PS (51.4mpg and 129g/km CO2) and the 1.4-litre TSI 160 PS; rounding out the petrol-power choices.

The new Beetle goes on sale in the UK in early 2012; order books open in the summer. And the Beet goes on…

By Daniel Anslow

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