Volkswagen today announced the launch of an online pre-order program with the launch of a special edition 2012 Beetle. Volkswagen’s pre-order program, cleverly named “Vehicle Pre-Order Program,” will be launched using Amazon’s e-commerce system and is designed to allow Volkswagen customers to reserve limited-edition models. To kick things off, Volkswagen also announced the 2012 Black Turbo Launch Edition Beetle, which will only be available through the Vehicle Pre-Order Program.
Despite the “first-ever” language, this isn’t the first time that Volkswagen has launched a new Beetle online. Back in 2000, shortly after the New Beetle first arrived on our shores and the internet was still a curious novelty that nobody knew exactly what to do with, Volkswagen launched the New Beetle Limited Edition which was only available for purchase on the internet. Painted in either Reflex Yellow with VW’s 1.8-liter turbocharged inline-four pot under the hood or in Blue Vapor with a choice of the turbocharged 1.8-liter I-4 or naturally-aspirated 2.0-liter I-4 under the hood, a total of 4,000 were produced.
This time around, Volkswagen’s giving its customers less choice but more exclusivity. The special edition 2012 Beetle Black Turbo Launch Edition is essentially a Beetle 2.0L TSI. The one of 600 $24,950 Black Turbo will feature Volkswagen’s very good 2.0-liter turbocharged I-4 producing 200-hp and 207 lb-ft of torque mated to a dual-clutch six-speed dual-clutch transmission. The Black Turbo will come standard with modern necessities such as Bluetooth and iPod connectivity. Further completing the package are the addition of larger brakes with red calipers, 18-inch wheels and what Volkswagen calls a “kaeferfach” which is an extra glove box above where the normal one is, kind of like the one you get in modern-day Land Rovers or Beetles of yore.
The process for preordering the Black Turbo Beetle seems easy enough. All you need is an internet connection and a refundable $495 deposit. Log onto VW’s Pre-Order site, enter your zip code, select a dealer to pick up your car and that’s it. For those that are interested in the Black Turbo Beetle, you’d better get cracking—those 600 cars will probably go quick.