Chicago Auto Show: Volkswagen Super Beetle GRC

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Volkswagen-Beetle-GRC-300What is it?

It’s the fastest Beetle in all the land. Andretti Autosport took the stock 2.0-liter turbo four-cylinder, cranked it to 560 hp and routed all that monstrous thrust through an all-wheel drive system and a sequential racing gearbox. The Beetle Global Rallycross (also known as the “Super Beetle”) will start racing in the Red Bull Global Rallycross series later this year.

Why should you care?

You should be curious to watch this lowered, winged Super Beetle take 60 mph in under three seconds, pull maniac powerslides and fly through the air. It’s all for entertainment and sponsor money.


What’s not to like?

Only the pros can drive it. Two-time GRC champ and overall bad boy Tanner Foust will drive the yellow Rockstar Super Beetle and former Formula 1 and NASCAR ace Scott Speed will command the 7Up version.


When is it on sale?

Never. Volkswagen said Andretti Autosports would switch from its Polo GRC (a non-US Volkswagen smaller than the Golf) to the Super Beetles later in the season. Get some tickets to a race, or do your best impression of Tanner Foust with a street-legal, black-on-yellow Beetle GSR for $31,000. With 210 horsepower, that bug is surprisingly quick around a track.

Photos by Clifford Atiyeh/BestRide

Clifford Atiyeh

Clifford Atiyeh

Clifford Atiyeh has spent his entire life driving cars he doesn't own. Based in Connecticut, he writes for BestRide, Car and Driver, The Boston Globe and other publications.