VW Beetle GSR (2014) CAR review Road Testing Reviews Car Magazine Online — 2014 Volkswagen The Beetle

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2014 Volkswagen The Beetle

VW Beetle GSR (2014) CAR review

By Kew

First Drives

17 January 10:00

VW has quietly turned the New into an unlikely hot hatch-baiter. As of May power from the flagship car’s 2.0-litre four-cylinder has been eked from to 207bhp. That’s more than an RS Clio or Ford ST. and just 10 horses shy of the Mk7 Golf GTI .

To 100 of these wasp-striped Beetle will be coming to the UK, costing – £1205 more than the identical Beetle Turbo.

special about the VW Beetle

GSR stands for ‘Gelb Schwarz – German for yellow black It’s not the first time the been given the treatment; the 1303 S came along in complete with the requisite paint job, black and engine cover; just units were built.

The rare classic version this 21st Century – you get a black bootlid and ducktail slightly suspect bonnet and side decals, plus stitching inside to differentiate limited edition. Like the just 3500 new GSRs be sold worldwide, and if you want one in best get your skates on, as VW UK has 100 of them.

If you’re not a fan of the outlandish (a muter grey version is available) then bear in this is essentially a Beetle with an uglier front and an ‘R-design’ steering wheel. The Beetle Turbo looks rolls on identical 19in and packs the same performance

And just how powerful is that

By far the best bit about the Beetle GSR is its engine. The 2.0-litre petrol develops 207bhp with ft from 1700rpm right until 5200rpm. It’s no – get through the lag and 62mph is there for the in 7.3sec. It’s a fast Bug too – it’ll top out at 142mph.

One dab of the floor-hinged alloy throttle and there’s a more tuneful to the Beetle’s turbocharged engine, so than the Golf GTI. load, with the dash-top gauge’s needle waggling 1.5bar, it sounds dangerously to the five-pot warble of an Audi or its modern successor, the TTRS .

No exhaust pipe rasp either – this is true noise, which reverberates the cabin when you’re in the and shuts up and behaves when not. It attacks the Beetle’s reputation with gusto – but go thinking this is a Golf hot hatch.

Why not?

Because a GTI, and other excellent hot like Ford’s ST models, just dump a socking into an ordinary chassis. also exhibit bespoke weights, and more immediate to give the driver the confidence to the turbocharged ponies up front. The Turbo, and this GSR variant, don’t.

Make no mistake – the Beetle is (ride apart) a fine car to about in. The gearchange has a light, manual action, matched slick steering that’s out via a sumptuously upholstered flat-bottom But these simply feel normal car controls, rather a performance car’s.

2014 Volkswagen The Beetle

Where a Cooper S drives as if every has been tuned to conjure a (and inspire assurance), the merely adequate brakes, feedback and gearchange are left in the wake of the bombastic engine. a blunt instrument, in the vein of the quick, similarly unpolished Kia GT .

Pack a cushion, by the way. The is extremely busy. Audi busy, in fact. The car’s is stiff enough to cope the gaping chasm of a boot accessed by the enormous rear but the impressively flat cornering aren’t a fair trade for the unsettled, fidgety behaviour.

So I’ll drive it calmly. else?

The parts-bin VW cabin is appointed, and being the top-spec enjoys standard kit like sat-nav, Bluetooth, heated parking sensors and automatic control. The Turbo/GSR is improved oil temperate, stopwatch and boost front-and-centre, but unlike a Ford ST’s ancillary readouts, aren’t angled towards the

There’s a slab of glossy fascia that riffs off the Beetle inside, but frankly you’re perched behind the beltline, tall scuttle and doors, it’s easy to you’re in such a shamelessly vehicle. That’s not something level at the other ‘past cars out there: the Mini S, or Fiat 500 Abarth. which their interior fancy with pride.

One similarity all three – they’re essentially 2+2 The Beetle’s bubble-top roof and angled hatch result in claustrophobic rear quarters, the current Beetle’s sizeable Want decent rear Honestly, you’re better for in a VW Up. If only Volkswagen would the engine in the back! Now there’s an

One more thing – VW’s economy figure for the Beetle GSR is a 38.7mpg – almost 10mpg to a Golf GTI’s theoretical Our GSR test car (number 133, if wondering) averaged 31.5mpg, and fancy our chances of closing in on the figures if the mood took us.

We’re really reviewing two in one here. You’ve really got to the looks of the GSR, and its ultra-retro to shell out more than extra for its rarity credentials. A limited edition, in other

Meanwhile, the revised Beetle is a good car hamstrung by the abilities of its GTI-badged stablemate – and a machine we has been reined in from hot hatch potential. That the Beetle Turbo stranded in a no-man’s land, between pastiche charm and sheer brilliance. It’s a bug’s

2014 Volkswagen The Beetle
2014 Volkswagen The Beetle
2014 Volkswagen The Beetle
2014 Volkswagen The Beetle
2014 Volkswagen The Beetle
2014 Volkswagen The Beetle

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