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The Volkswagen Beetle Dune is a cute Baja Bug throwback (pictures)

The Baja Bug, a traditional Volkswagen Beetle modified for off-road use, got its start in Southern California car culture. It only makes sense, then, that Volkswagen would choose the Los Angeles Auto Show to unveil its spiritual successor, the 2016 Beetle Dune.

joshmiller.jpg
joshmiller.jpg

Josh Miller

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2016 Volkswagen Beetle Dune
1 of 19 Josh Miller/CNET

Volkswagen's Beetle Dune might be a throwback to the Baja Bug, but it'll be far more sensible on the road since it's still a passenger car underneath.

2016 Volkswagen Beetle Dune
2 of 19 Josh Miller/CNET

The Beetle Dune features a 0.6-inch wider track and a 0.4-inch higher ground clearance.

2016 Volkswagen Beetle Dune
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The Dune features matte-black elements all around the exterior, as well as polished aluminum side sills.

2016 Volkswagen Beetle Dune
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The front and rear features aluminum skid plates, and both bumpers have been upgraded for a slightly more aggressive appearance.

2016 Volkswagen Beetle Dune
5 of 19 Josh Miller/CNET

The Beetle Dune will be available in both coupe and convertible variants.

2016 Volkswagen Beetle Dune
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The Beetle Dune coupe arrives in the first quarter of 2016 and the convertible follows in the third quarter.

2016 Volkswagen Beetle Dune
7 of 19 Josh Miller/CNET

If you opt for the Sandstorm Yellow paint job, you'll get color-keyed dashboard and upper door-panel trim.

2016 Volkswagen Beetle Dune
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Stick with black or white paint (the only other paint options), and the interior will be all black.

2016 Volkswagen Beetle Dune
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Standard technology on the Beetle Dune includes a 6.3-inch touchscreen infotainment system with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto smartphone connectivity, USB ports and a backup camera.

2016 Volkswagen Beetle Dune
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The interior isn't much different from the standard Beetle, aside from the Dune's unique contrasting stitching that appears on the shift boot, the seats and the leather-wrapped steering wheel.

2016 Volkswagen Beetle Dune
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The Dune's drivetrain is the same as the standard Beetle's -- a 1.8-liter, turbocharged four-cylinder engine good for 170 horsepower and 184 pound-feet of torque.

2016 Volkswagen Beetle Dune
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Both manual and automatic transmissions are available, each with six forward speeds.

2016 Volkswagen Beetle Dune
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The first of two available packages is the Lighting Package, which gives the car bi-xenon headlights, LED running lights and LED license-plate lights.

2016 Volkswagen Beetle Dune
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The second available package is the Technology Package, which includes dual-zone automatic climate control, a Fender-branded audio system, keyless access and a sunroof (for the coupe variant).

2016 Volkswagen Beetle Dune
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Volkswagen has not yet talked about availability in markets outside the US. It's mum on pricing info, as well.

2016 Volkswagen Beetle Dune
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You really need to be a fan of yellow to opt for an interior like this.

2016 Volkswagen Beetle Dune
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The Beetle Dune rocks a large spoiler, not that it's good for off-roading or anything -- it just looks nice.

2016 Volkswagen Beetle Dune
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The Beetle Dune concept was the sole new unveiling at Volkswagen's booth this year.

2016 Volkswagen Beetle Dune
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If you're going to take your Beetle Dune convertible off-roading, it's probably wise to keep the top up. Nobody wants to spend half a day vacuuming dust out of a car.

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