Volkswagen has launched two high performance versions of the Beetle, the 1.8T and V5 – and announced that a TDI version will be available next year.
With the same engine that powers the Golf GTI, Bora, Passat and Sharan, the 1.8T variant costs from £15,445 OTR. The V5 also powers the Golf, Bora and Passat and in the Beetle costs £16,995 OTR.
The Beetle 1.8T has a top speed of 126mph and a 0-62mph time of nine seconds. It has a combined fuel consumption figure of 34.4mpg. It is available in five-speed manual or four-speed auto transmissions.
Externally the 1.8T differs from the 2.0-litre with fog lights and a roof spoiler that appears above the rear window at high speed to reduce rear lift and increased stability.
Inside it has a leather steering wheel, gearknob and handbrake grip in addition to the equipment found in the 2.0-litre.
The 170bhp V5 (top speed 131, 0-62mph 8.7 seconds) adds to the 1.8T 17-inch seven-spoke Daytona alloys and inside there is a boot-mounted six disc CD autochanger.
VW expects around 9% of total Beetle sales to be 1.8T (pictured) models and 5% V5. A 100bhp TDI PD Beetle is expected to go on sale early in 2002.