Volkswagen has sneakily announced plans to put the Beetle Dune Concept from the 2014 Detroit Motor Show into production in 2016. The confirmation didn't come in a press release as long as your arm (as is the norm among German automakers). Instead, it came as almost an aside during a promotional video for the high-riding Bug. And it isn't only going to be limited to the coupe like the concept either; a convertible version is also on the way.

The video doesn't go into any further details about the pumped-up Beetle. However, according to Car in the UK, its European launch is scheduled for early 2016, and the production version is getting the extra 2 inches of ground clearance and 1.1-inch wider track from the concept. That suggests the wider fenders and different front and rear fascia will make it to the road, too. Pricing is rumored to be about 2,800 euros on top of a standard Bug. That's roughly a $3,800 US premium over its more ground-bound cousins, but we suspect if it came Stateside, the premium would almost certainly be smaller.

The Beetle Dune's powertrain range is still a mystery, though. The show car had a 210-horsepower, 2.0-liter turbocharged four-cylinder with a six-speed dual-clutch gearbox routing power to the front wheels. We would expect a fuller range of powerplants, and it'd be nice if all-wheel drive were offered to cash in on that extra ground clearance.

Of course, just because VW launches a new product for Europe, doesn't guarantee it for North America. Autoblog asked VW of America spokesperson Mark Gillies about the model's chances, and he toed the company line, saying: "We haven't announced any official plans for this vehicle."

Let's not rule getting the Beetle Dune out, though. After all, VW debuted the concept in Detroit, and there's a still-robust romance associated with all things dune buggy in our corner of the world. It would quite a tease to reveal it here and not sell it, no? Scroll down to watch the video – the announcement comes at about the 50-second mark.


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  • 48 Comments
      Bogie
      • 5 Months Ago
      Make sure it has AWD as an option and send it north to Canada. Yes on the ski rack as well.
      david.bergman1
      • 5 Months Ago
      Yay, the Baja is back!
      Teleny411
      • 5 Months Ago
      Cute
      Paul P.
      • 5 Months Ago
      VW Beetle Dune TDI 4Motion I'd drive that.
      cpmanx
      • 5 Months Ago
      If they can just sell 500,000 a year of these in the United States, they can make their sales target!
      Lucky Stars
      • 5 Months Ago
      Call me crazy but this is somehow cool to me, now if it could actually tackle a dirt road on the way to the cabin, and perform close to a subaru xuv, nay outback!!! It would be intriguing and look good. Will I buy one.............probably not though
      tiguan2.0
      • 5 Months Ago
      I must have one.
      inuvik
      • 5 Months Ago
      I think somebody misread the press release. It'sa Dung Beetle, not a Dune Beetle. Yuck
      jjmoonen
      • 5 Months Ago
      Seriously VW, just stop already. Your jokes are not funny. Apparently German humor does not translate to English very well. No matter what you do to the upside bathtub it will never be cool.
      Fazzster
      • 5 Months Ago
      This is cool and all but VW should really be focusing on a Tiguan replacement and a Passat Wagon akin to the Audi Allroad.
        SteveM
        • 5 Months Ago
        @Fazzster
        Replies like this confuse me -- you do realize that the company can focus on multiple models at once, right? It's not like the Dune is going to consume 100% of the entire company's attention.
        Lachmund
        • 5 Months Ago
        @Fazzster
        They are.
      audisp0rta4
      • 5 Months Ago
      It would be ridiculous for VW to sell this crap and not offer 4motion. Give it 4motion, TDI and DSG and the dung beetle actually may not be half bad!
      Brodz
      • 5 Months Ago
      From the video: "The Front driven dune will also be available as a convertible." This is just a silly gimmicky pile of pants. The car should be based off the 911 platform, and come in varying sizes of flat four engine, petrol and perhaps diesel.
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