The new 2012 Volkswagen E-Bugster Concept is actually the latest Beetle which is powered purely by electricity! It is the environmentally conscientious version of the famous model, now even more appealing in shape and design! The new concept vehicle was just revealed at the North American International Auto Show in Detroit. As we can see the new two-seat E-Bugster continues Beetle's sporty theme. However this version is powered by an electric motor which provides 85 kWh of power. This means that it can accelerate the car from 0 to 100 km/h in 10.9 seconds! Yet, it offers a range of at least 110 miles from the 28.3 kWh lithium-ion batteries!

Another important feature here is that it can be completely recharged for only 35 minutes when it is in the function fast-charging. This quick charging is possible due to a new Combined Charging System. The latter was developed in co-operation with Audi, BMW, Daimler, Porsche, Ford and General Motors/Opel, and more importantly allows charging via single-phase AC sources (for example a 120-Volt US or 230-Volt European domestic outlet) or via ultra-fast DC sources at specific charging stations.

Volkswagen E-Bugster Concept

Furthermore the E-Bugster doesn't only charge when plugged in. Here's the deal: as soon as the driver's foot leaves the accelerator pedal kinetic energy is transformed into electricity and stored in the battery. Isn't that brilliant! In addition, applying the brakes increases the intensity of regeneration - a function which informs the driver through the instrument panel. Other instruments feature driving range and battery state indicators, and a measuring tool which shows how much energy the driver is requesting via the accelerator pedal.

The size of the 2012 Volkswagen E-Bugster Concept is 4,278 mm long and 1,838 mm wide, which makes it the same length as the Beetle, however 30 mm wider. On the other hand the new roof lowers the height by around 90 mm to 1,400 mm.  This was done in order to give the E-Bugster more dynamic and sporty look.  And it definitely does! The low, swept-back windscreen ensures maximum visibility, as does the wide rear screen, which shows that speedster-style vehicles need not be impractical.

Volkswagen E-Bugster Concept at 2012 NAIAS in Detroit

Other differences from the production Beetle are the front and rear bumpers, which have been substantially modified. In details, at the front, LED daytime running lights at the outer edges of the central air intake form a C-shape on the left that is mirrored on the right. This is a signature which is featured on all Volkswagen's electric vehicle concepts.  This is also happens at the back, where reflectors take the place of LEDs.  Additionally there are 20-inch alloy wheels which were adapted from the 18-inch ‘Twister' alloys of the production car. They come along with 235/35 tyres.  Around the bottom edge of the side windows is a chrome strip that loops around the vehicle from A-pillar to A-pillar.  From this chrome strip to the top of the E-Bugster's hard top the height is a low 400mm.

The interior of the car is also as impressive as the exterior – it reflects the E-Bugster's blend of high-tech and spottiness. In particular it includes sports seats nestling either side of a continuous centre console, plus aluminium door handles and seatbelt guides. Starting the E-Bugster is pure enjoyment and fun. Only with pressing the Start button the interior is bathed in white light, then blue light.  It starts with a light pulse in the instrument cluster, from where the light emanates in a millimetre-wide strip, coursing into the doors and around the air nozzles.

However the E-Bugster is only in a concept stage.

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Source: Volkswagen