Currently reading: New VW Beetle - first pics
Spy pics show a lower, more sporty Beetle; set to reach the UK in May after a Detroit debut

These are the first spy pictures of the all-new Volkswagen Beetle in testing.

Disguised to look like the current model, the test car’s identity as the new Beetle is given away by its narrower, less rounded glasshouse and new doors which contribute to a lower, sportier stance.

See the first spy pics of the next VW Beetle

VW company sources have previously told Autocar the new Beetle will be a "radical design" and not just a Mini-style round of minor upgrades.

It will share it platform with the new VW Jetta and will be built alongside that car at VW’s Puebla plant in Mexico after its show debut at the Detroit motor show next January.

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

Read more on the next VW Beetle, plus see Autocar's exclusive rendering

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.

The new Beetle is expected to go on sale in the UK in May 2011. A cabriolet will follow about a year later.

See all the latest VW Beetle reviews, news and video


Read our review

Car review

The Volkswagen Beetle is only the third all-new model since the original launched in 1938. It is based on the Mk6 Golf, but the base car is far better

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Rich boy spanners 10 October 2010

Re: New VW Beetle - first pics

I've always liked the new retro Beetles. They are, admittedly, cynical and contrived and ultimately a bit pointless compared with say a Golf. But, at least they stand out and look a bit different compared to the dull, dull monotony of most cars. Look at the Golf, Passat, everything made by Vauxhall/Opel and most Skoda's, the new Magane etc, all boring as a dish cloth. As least the Beetle attracts some response and attention. And it will sell, mainly to people who have never even heard of Autocar and don't give a hoot what a bunch of people on its website think.

RobotBoogie 6 October 2010

Re: New VW Beetle - first pics

There's a kind of pleasing hot rod thing to its stance.

Peter Cavellini 6 October 2010

Re: New VW Beetle - first pics

Mantaray, sorry to poopmon your dream, but it was built on the original compact chassis, you know? the three series hatchback,