Volkswagen is preparing the tiny Up! city car for its global showroom debut, including Australia, over the coming year.
This week at the Frankfurt Motor Show, the German giant has revealed a handful of reimagined Up! concepts.
Volkswagen Buggy Up! Concept
The most 'out there' of the Up! concepts, the Buggy Up! is inspired by the California-bred Beetle-based dune-buggy of the 60s.
The Buggy Up! is strictly a design study - like MINI's Beachcomber concept, you shouldn't expect to see this one cruising the beaches anytime soon.
As with the roadgoing Up! city car, the Buggy Up! is built from ultra-lightweight materials, but this one gets a unique ground-up exterior design.
Slightly longer and a touch wider than the regular Up!, the Buggy concept sits 20mm lower and rides on 18-inch alloy wheels.
There's a waterproof interior with neoprene seat trim, and a number of drains in the floor to stop the permanently-topless Buggy from flooding.
Volkswagen Up! GT Concept
The Up! GT is inspired by the iconic Golf GTI, and while its 75kW turbocharged 1.3 litre engine doesn't have the guts of its bigger stablemate, its 900kg kerb weight makes it an appealing-enough prospect.
Styling tweaks for the sporty Up! GT include the familiar honeycomb pattern to the low-mounted grille, flanked by large intakes and LED daytime running lights.
There's also 17-inch alloy wheels, twin-exhaust tips at the rear, side skirts and a roof-mounted rear spoiler.
Volkswagen Cross Up!
The five-door Up! also made it debut at Frankfurt this week in the form of the Cross Up!. A European launch for the five-door is expected in the middle of next year.
As with most of Volkswagen's Euro-market Cross models, the Cross Up! gets higher-riding suspension, rugged bumpers at both ends and underbody protection.
Volkswagen hasn't specified, but as with the CrossPolo, it's likely that the Cross Up! retains its front-wheel-drive layout.
Volkswagen Up! Azzurra
Conceived by Volkswagen design boss Walter de Silva and the renowned Giorgetto Giugiaro, the Up! Azzura is without doubt the classiest - if not the most unusual - offering in this round of concepts.
Inspired by the nautical environments common to the upbringing of both, the two designers have gifted the Up! Azzura with an open-air cabin, rich wood trim, chrome highlights and a white-blue leather trim.
This one has been coming for some time, and its 'unveiling' at Frankfurt brings only a few minor styling tweaks since the last time it did the motor-show rounds.
The e-Up! is scheduled to make its showroom debut in 2013, but it's unclear if we'll see this one in Australia - at least, not right away.
Power for the e-Up! is provided by an electric motor producing 60kW and 210Nm of torque. With energy drawn from an 18kWh battery pack, the e-Up! will offer a driving range of around 130 kilomtres.
Volkswagen eco Up!
The eco Up! is expected to hit European roads before the electrified e-Up!, arriving sometime before next year's Frankfurt Motor Show.
Power for the eco Up! is provided by a 50kW 1.0 litre three-cylinder engine running on compressed natural gas. Volkswagen's BlueMotion technology will also feature, including a start/stop system and battery regeneration.
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