This is the Volkswagen E-Bugster concept, which has been launched at the Detroit motor show. It is, in fact, two concepts in one, being both a slightly exaggerated concept version of the upcoming second generation Beetle cabriolet and the debut of the electric drivetrain destined to be used by the wider Golf family from 2013.
The E-Bugster is 90mm lower and 30mm wider than the production Beetle hatchback but retains the same length. The concept has been laid out as a strict two-seater, with the battery pack positioned behind the front seats.
The exterior styling, with a cut-down windscreen, low hard-top and shallow side windows, are all direct references to the classic southern California hot rod look.
This concept also gets bespoke bumper designs, incorporating the large C-shaped LED running lights first seen on the electric version of the Up city car. Extended wings accommodate 20-inch wheels and 235/35 tyres.
Inside, pressing the start button begins a light show that immerses the interior first in blue light, then white light, followed by pulsing lights from the instrument cluster. This then turns into a light strip just 1mm high that runs around the vents and along the door trims.