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VW E-Bugster – it’s the electric love-child of a Beetle and a Porsche 356

Wed, 11 Jan 2012 00:00:00 -0800

VW E-Bugster

Volkswagen has revealed the VW E-Bugster at the Detroit Auto Show, a squashed VW Beetle with big wheels and the electric motor from the Golf EV.

Maybe it’s early and our eyes and brains aren’t in gear yet. But the VW E-Bugster – an electric customised VW Beetle – looks like it’s a cross between a California surfin’ chopped Beetle and a Porsche 356. Unfortunately – for all its dramatic looks – the E-Buster has to make do with a 114 horse electric motor for propulsion, when the looks would say a nice flat six.

The chopped roof and flat windscreen make the E-Bugster perhaps the most distinctive Beetle to come out of VW in some time, and the allusion to the Porsche 356 no doubt comes from the almost Fuchs style wheels and the Carrera style graphic running down the side of the E-Bugster.

But despite the glitz and gloss the E-Bugster has in spades, under the appealing bodywork and wheels lies a much more prosaic statement. The 114hp electric motor comes straight out of the Golf EV and with batteries that weigh about the same as a small moon – 315kg. VW say they are good for a minimum range of 112 miles and that they can be 80 per cent charged in just 30 minutes.

We somehow doubt the VW E-Bugster is anything more than a showcase for the electric gubbins that will underpin the new Golf EV, but we can hope there’s a glimmer of a chance that VW may just decide to produce a limited run of the E-Bugster.

But with a nice flat six from Porsche instead of the electric nonsense.

(14 photos – click any thumbnail for full gallery)

By Cars UK