VW to send off the second-generation front-engined Beetle on a retro note with limited edition The Beetle Classic.
When the second-generation of VW’s new-era front-engined and water-cooled Beetle arrived in Australia in 2013, it brought a more grown-up coupe profile than any of the millions of bugs that preceded it.
It also dropped the New Beetle name in favour of The Beetle, beating the La Ferrari with its translated ‘The’ prefix by a matter of months.
Name aside, this clearly wasn’t the look that Beetle lovers were looking for, amassing just 1640 local sales in the three-and-a-half years since.
Meanwhile, the legendary rear-engined, air-cooled models are enjoying a huge resurgence among enthusiasts, with values rising steadlily for good examples.
So, it seems fitting that VW has done its best to reverse this contemporary coupe look with the limited-edition The Beetle Classic that will make up the final examples to be sold on our shores.
Limited to a Herbie-referencing 53 numbered units, the Beetle Classic will bring a bunch of unashamedly retro details that are headlined by 17-inch circle alloys that reference the flat-hubcap steel wheels fitted to air-cooled models from 1969 onwards.
Chrome mirrors and a Volkswagen lettered badge across the bootlid add to the visual backdating, along with 70s-looking black Beetle decals along the sides and a black roof.
The Beetle Classic’s unique details will add $3100 to the regular auto model’s list price.
It will be available in white only, with black checquered cloth to distinguish the interior.
Modern touches will include Bi-xenon headlights plus blind-spot detection and rear cross-traffic alerts.
Under bonnet will be the same 118kW/240Nm turbocharged and supercharged 1.4-litre petrol engine that’s been fitted to all Australian The Beetles, but the Classic will only be produced with the seven-speed DSG dual-clutch auto.
Set to arrive in Australian showrooms in early September, The Beetle Classic’s unique details will add $3100 to the regular auto model’s list price to total $36,990.
2016 Volkswagen The Beetle Classic list price – seven-speed DSG auto - $36,990
Is The Beetle Classic enough to put a shine on the second-generation front-engined Beetle’s reputation before it bows out? Tell us what you think in the comments below.