VW goes retro again with the reincarnation of the original Beetle GSR from 1973. That yellow car had a matte black hood and bootlid, and 50 horsepower coming from the air-cooled boxer to rotate those "15 inch steel wheels as fast as possible. The new car ups the ante in the power department. Power quadruples (!) to 210 turbocharged horses and wheels grow four whole inches to 19-inch alloys with 235/40 tires. A lot changed in the last 40 years, apparently. That means the similarities pretty much end with the paint job.

This special edition will be limited to 3,500 units worldwide, and can be ordered in a more subtle Platinum Gray or Black color if yellow is not your thing. The R-Line sport seats are coming with fabric covers and contrasting yellow stitching, or black leather for US customers. The steering wheel and the handbrake lever get grippy leather for that sporty, GSR-y feel. The gear stick (linked to a six-speed manual or an optional DSG) and the black floor mats with contrasting yellow embroidery are also unique to the GSR. And like any good limited edition car, it has a badge telling you what number yours is out of the 3,500 built.


But this isn't the only new Beetle coming to the Chicago Auto Show. The R-Line Convertible will join the family with unique 19-inch aluminum-alloy wheels on lower-profile all season tires, the sport suspension from the Turbo, and Bi-Xenon headlights with LED running lights.

Inside, the dash and the door trim get a metallic finish, the pedals are now made of shiny aluminum, and the sport seats and the flat bottom steering wheel get the leather treatment. The R-Line package also includes navigation, keyless access and the fancy Fender Audio System, which has a 10-channel, 400 watt amplifier linked to eight speakers and a rear subwoofer. Boom baby!

Photo credit: Volkswagen AG