Good news for shoppers planning on buying a 2013 Volkswagen Beetle Turbo or Jetta GLI: the cars will now be a little more powerful thanks to the addition of a new engine, and they receive several visual tweaks.
The Beetle Turbo coupe and convertible, and Jetta GLI sedan, receive the third generation of Volkswagen's "EA888" 2.0-liter turbo-four engine. It produces 210 hp and 207 lb-ft of torque, an increase of 10 hp, and the peak power is now available at 5300 rpm rather than 5100 rpm. Volkswagen claims the Beetle Turbo coupe is thus 0.2 second quicker, taking 6.6 seconds to reach 60 mph. The Jetta GLI's performance improves to 6.7 seconds -- which is 0.1 second faster than current models with a manual transmission and 0.2 second faster than those with a DSG dual-clutch.
Better yet, Volkswagen expects the third-generation turbo engine to improve fuel economy by up to eight percent on the highway and up to nine percent in the city. The third-generation engine, which is built in Silao, Mexico, is also eight pounds lighter than the second-gen unit currently installed in the Beetle Turbo and Jetta GLI.
In addition, both of the turbocharged cars receive visual changes for 2013. The Jetta GLI and Beetle Turbo both adopt R-Line bumpers, with black surfaces and chrome turn-signal surrounds at the front and a diffuser insert at the back. The Jetta GLI also adds full-LED taillights.
The new Beetle Turbo R-Line also replaces the Sunroof, Sound, and Navigation as the car's highest trim level. It wears R-Line bumpers, 19-inch "Tornado" wheels, xenon headlights with LED running lights, stainless-steel door-sill plates, and a "chrome vanadium" dashboard trim. It starts at $30,930 (after a $795 destination charge) with a six-speed manual transmission.
Pricing for the 2013 Jetta GLI doesn't change with the new engine. However, the Beetle Turbo sees a slight price bump for all models. The 2013 Volkswagen Beetle Turbo coupe now starts at $25,165 (after a $795 destination charge), and the Turbo coupe with Sunroof and Sound is $28,065. The Beetle Turbo convertible now starts at $29,265, the Beetle Turbo convertible with Sound is $30,665, and the Beetle Turbo convertible R-Line is $32,665.
A Volkswagen official tells us the updated cars with the 210-hp engine should be in dealerships this weekend.