Volkswagen is borrowing a page from sister company Porsche and will turn to the color black to create buzz for the upcoming 2012 Beetle -- and to draw attention to a preorder program launching this year.
The Black Turbo edition follows in the lineage of Porsche 911s augmented with Black editions. The VW will sticker for $25,720, including shipping.
Power comes from a 2.0-liter four-cylinder rated at 200 horsepower and 207 pounds feet of torque, which is the same as the regular turbo Beetle and VW's GTI hatchback. The Black Turbo also includes larger brakes, an additional glove box recalling the original Beetle, 18-inch wheels and a rear spoiler.
The special edition is meant to serve as a catalyst for VW's Vehicle Pre-Order Program. Customers put down $495 to reserve the Beetle early, and that money goes toward the final price of the car. VW developed the online ordering process with Amazon. Cars are available starting today and only 600 copies of the Black Turbo will be produced.
The Beetle arrives in dealerships this fall, starting at $19,765 for the base 2.5-liter, five-cylinder naturally aspirated mill making 170 hp. A diesel joins the lineup in 2012.
The Beetle has been one of the most anticipated cars of the year and bowed in gala reveals at the New York and Shanghai auto shows this spring. VW has high hopes of attracting more male buyers to the car, which features a slightly tougher design, premium audio and dramatically redone interior.
"You don't change a car like that on a whim," Volkswagen of America CEO Jonathan Browning said in New York. "The 21st-century Beetle is a great leap forward."