1.4-litre 150hp engine, off-road styling add off-beat cool charm to the already unique Beetle for Singapore
The Volkswagen Beetle is the latest car to get an off-road inspired offshoot model, in the form of the Beetle Dune.
The car has just been announced on sale in Singapore. With a 1.4-litre engine, it costs $127,900 with COE.
It’s the first 1.4-litre Beetle to land here – the current Coupe and Cabriolet models have 105hp 1.2-litre engines and retails for $112,400 with COE and $125,900 with COE. A 1.2-litre version of the Beetle Dune is in the pipeline.
The 150hp output of the 1.4-litre engine, which is the same unit found in the Touran 1.4 and Tiguan 1.4, although it lacks the cylinder deactivation tech of the latter.
There’s 250Nm of torque, made from 1,500rpm to 3,000rpm, the engine’s mated to a seven-speed dual-clutch gearbox. Top speed is 200km/h, 0-100km/h is done in 8.8 seconds, and it emits 132g/km of CO2.
We are not going to make any dung beetle jokes here, although they are fascinating creatures once worshipped by the ancient Egyptians, because the Beetle Dune actually looks quite cool.
You can’t fail to notice the chunky off-road styling of course, there’s that big, gaping maw with a jaw-like contrast ‘bash plate’, contrast wheel arch extensions, and a similar rear diffuser, plus a big-ass wing on the back.
The interior features a few Dune-only touches too, such as badges, stitching, and instruments.
This one is in Sandstorm Yellow Metallic, which suits its ‘Dune’ moniker quite closely, you can also get it in white or black.
Is it cool or contrived? Well, unlike many modern crossovers, there is at least a historical precedent here. And the Beetle has come very far from its New Beetle flower-holder-with-four-wheels past to become something that lives up to the optimism and less-expensiveness of the classic model.
The original Beetle was used in rallying and even did the Dakar. VW Motorsport even made super-badass rallycross versions of the current Beetle with more than 500hp.