Wild VW Beetle R Concept rides on 20-inch alloys and could offer about 265bhp if it hits production
14 September 2011

The Volkswagen Beetle R Concept, revealed for the first time at Frankfurt motor show, hints that VW could add an extra model to its high-performance ‘R’ sub-brand in the future.

The Beetle R Concept, described by VW as the ‘sportiest Beetle ever’, features customised front and rear sections and rides on 20-inch alloys.

The sportiest Volkswagen Beetle in the current line-up is the 2.0 TSI, which offers 197bhp. Although official performance figures for the Beetle R Concept haven’t been revealed by VW, the Wolfsburg manufacturer says it would be reasonable to expect similar power to the Golf R (266bhp) and Scirocco R (261bhp).

The Beetle R Concept is painted in what VW refers to as ‘serious grey’ and has bigger alloys than the R versions of the Golf and Scirocco. It boasts flared wheel arches and redesigned front and rear bumpers that are 30mm wider than the conventional Beetle.

The front bumper, which is designed as a motorsport-inspired splitter, features three air intakes – the middle one that channels air to the engine and the outer two that cool the brakes. The bonnet has air vents for extra ventilation.

The rear end has an integrated rear diffuser and a rear spoiler that is larger than the production Beetle, as well as two sets of dual-chrome tailpipes.

The car is finished in a grey and black-gloss colour scheme. The interior features black Nappa leather sports seats, brushed aluminium pedal caps, upgraded door sill plates and an instrument cluster that’s specifically styled for the R models.

As for whether the Beetle R Concept will ever reach production, a 'hot' Beetle would fit in with VW's bid to make the new version of the famous car appeal to a masculine audience.

See all the latest Volkswagen reviews, news and video

Add your comment

Log in or register to post comments

Find an Autocar car review

Driven this week

  • Citroën C3 Aircross
    First Drive
    17 October 2017
    It's got funky looks and a charming interior, but it's another small SUV, and another dynamic miss. Numb steering is just one thing keeping it from class best
  • Skoda-Karoq 2.0 TDI 4x4
    First Drive
    16 October 2017
    Diesel version of Skoda’s junior SUV is unobtrusive and undemanding, but we’d still go for the silkier petrol version of the Karoq
  • Audi Q7 e-tron
    First Drive
    16 October 2017
    Expensive and flawed but this understated diesel-electric Audi Q7 has a lot to offer
  • Citroën C3
    First Drive
    16 October 2017
    Is the third gen Citroën C3 ‘fresh and different’ enough to take on its supermini rivals? We spend six months with one to find out
  • BMW X3
    First Drive
    15 October 2017
    A satisfying rework of the X3 that usefully improves its handling, cabin finish, space and connectivity to make this BMW a class front-runner again