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Mike Stevens | Nov 17, 2011

Volkswagen has shipped its beefy Beetle R concept to California for this week's LA Auto Show, and while it is still a mere concept, the German powerhaus has yet to rule out an eventual production debut.

Volkswagen remains coy about what's driving the Beetle R concept, but as with the R-badged Golf and Scirocco models, we can likely expect to find the carmaker's 2.0 litre turbocharged four-cylinder engine unde the Bug's curves.

Fueling speculation for a future showroom debut, a new VW press release this week says the Beetle R shows "the potential for an even sportier version" of the Beetle. The current top-shelf model is the 147kW Beetle TSI.

Speaking with British magazine Autocar in LA, Volkswagen America boss dropped a hint of his own: "[it offers] a glimpse of what a production version will look like."

"Today it’s still a concept, but I talk about it in those terms with a twinkle in my eye," he added.

The concept shown at the LA Auto Show this week remains unchanged from the version that appeared at Frankfurt in September, with a big set of 20-inch polished R 'Talladega' wheels and a custom bodykit setting it apart from the regular Beetle.

For now, keep your fingers crossed. But if you're keen to jump into the Beetle before then, you may as well pack your bags for Europe: it's not due here for at least another year.

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