Volkswagen showed off this concept R version of the new Beetle at the Los Angeles Auto Show. Although just a concept, it signals that Volkswagen is building up R as its performance brand. The company is releasing a production Golf R early next year.
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Volkswagen released few specifications about the Beetle R, but there are some obvious cosmetic differences. It is based on the new, 2012 Beetle, with its flattened roofline. The Beetle R gets big air intakes below the bumper, which has also been widened by 1.2 inches.
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The engine is a turbocharged, direct injection 2-liter four cylinder and, if it is the same as that in the Golf R, it will produce 267 horsepower and 260 pound-feet of torque.
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Volkswagen put vents in the hood to help bleed heat from the engine bay; they give the car a more aggressive look.
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The Beetle R has a glass, panoramic roof, and four exhaust pipe tips. The Golf R has Volkswagen's 4Motion all-wheel-drive system, so the Beetle R would likely have this system as well.
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Custom 20-inch wheels adorn the Beetle R, with Volkswagen's blue brake calipers, a signature of its R division, visible between the spokes.
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Very cool-looking sport seats have high bolsters and Volkswagen's R logo.
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The Beetle R has Volksagen's DSG transmission, a dual-clutch six-speed able to perform very quick, efficient shifts.
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A set of three gauges are set into the top of the dashboard, showing information such as turbo pressure and oil temperature.
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Volkswagen also fitted the Beetle R concept with its RN315 infotainment system, which includes navigation, Bluetooth phone connectivity, and a variety of media sources. The car also has Volkswagen's new Fender premium audio system.
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