Perhaps no other car is as identifiable as the Volkswagen Beetle. Teenage girls squeal with delight at the sight of the convertible and young boys love to see the Super Beetle racing along the sand.
Well, the convertible has been around for a while so VW decided to throw a bone to the other half as it introduced its new Beetle Dune concept at the North American International Auto Show in Detroit.
The concept is painted in a yellowish-orange metallic VW calls “Arizona,” while the two-part wheel-arch extensions that are offset in black. The interior is spare with the same color scheme throughout. In short, it looks every bit the part of a dune buggy or sand racer.
The good news is that this reborn Dune buggy is powered by a 210-horsepower turbocharged TSI engine paired with a six-speed DSG dual-clutch transmission. Torque goes to the front wheels, but an XDS electronic locking differential helps improve traction on either sand or snow.
That’s right…snow. This concept comes with a pair of skis.
(VW sticking to U.S. sales goal of 1 million units by 2018. For more, Click Here.)
The Beetle Dune is comfortable sunning at the beach of sitting by the slopes. Anywhere skis or snowboards need to be transported, the Dune will happily oblige. The skis are mounted to the outside of the trunk lid.
In order to transport skis, the outer parts of the rear spoiler swivel; the skis are then placed in the spoiler, then it is closed to clamp them in place. At the top, the skis slide into a receptacle in the specially developed roof spoiler, where they are secured by an 0.8-inch-wide belt.
(Click Here for more background on the Beetle Dune.)
Oh, and if you’ve also got a sense of déjà vu, yes, Volkswagen had previously tried to get back into the buggy business with a Dune concept based on the gen-2 “New Beetle” that it debuted at the Los Angeles Auto Show 13 years ago. Unfortunately, the maker says, that show car “was not very realistic, especially with its interior and roof structure.”