The Volkswagen Beetle has graduated from an era of driving hippies cross-country to racing RallyCross.
A new super version of the classic car – the GRC Beetle – is being shown at the Chicago Auto Show and it’s gaining the attention of auto enthusiasts. All of the excitement is for good reason too – and it’s not just because there were two of them on display or that they look like Herbie’s steroidal adversary. Rather, the excitement came on Thursday when it was announced at the show that Volkswagen was joining forces with Andretti Autosport to compete in the Global RallyCross series. There, they revealed the early versions of the all-wheel-drive vehicle, complete with fitting nameplates: “Super Beetle”.
As for the racers themselves, Tanner Foust and Scott Speed will be the two men manning said Super Beetles.Tanner Foust, a two-time GRC champion, will drive the Rockstar Energy Drink Beetle while Scott Speed, a former NASCAR and Formula 1 driver, takes the 7Up-sponsored car.
Their RallyCross season adventure will span 10 races, beginning in Barbados on May 17. Because the actual competition cars aren’t yet completed, the finished product won’t be driven in those first races. In lieu, the ones that are going to be initially used will be the GRC-spec Polo models. The team’s goal, however, is to have the new Beetle racers ready to ride by June 7 – in time for the first United States race at the 2014 Summer X Games in Austin, Texas.
— Tanner Foust (@TannerFoust) February 7, 2014
A Beetle built to race might sound sort of unassuming…. but with 560 horsepower from a turbocharged custom-built racing engine, there’s reason enough for the competition to “bug out” a bit.
Image via Youtube