volkswagen reveals mid-engined roadster concept in detroit

Jan 12, 2009

Volkswagen is taking the North American International Auto Show in Detroit by storm this year with the world debut of an all-new mid-engined, rear-wheel drive roadster concept.

Named Concept BlueSport to define its environmental and sporting aspirations, the two-seat roadster, combines a highly efficient, mid-mounted common rail diesel engine with a lightweight chassis structure to put the emphasis on simplicity and sharp dynamics. 

The Concept BlueSport is fitted with a four-cylinder 2.0-litre TDI engine which produces 180 PS and 258 lbs ft of torque from 1,750 rpm.  Power is transferred to the rear wheels through a six-speed dual clutch DSG gearbox and sees the Concept BlueSport accelerate from standstill to 62 mph in 6.6 seconds and go on to a top speed of 140 mph. 

Despite its sporting focus the adoption of lightweight materials, coupled with a 45:55 weight distribution and multi-link rear suspension allows Concept BlueSport to strike a balance between agility and economy – the Concept emits just 113 g/km of CO2, while returning 65 mpg on the combined cycle.  To improve fuel economy and emissions further the ‘Eco’ mode function can be engaged to activate an automatic Stop-Start system and braking energy regeneration.

Styled by a team led by Director of Design for Volkswagen, Klaus Bischoff and Director of the Design Centre in Potsdam, Thomas Ingenlath, Concept BlueSport combines an elegant profile with a purposeful stance, clean surfaces and innovative design details. 

Finished in metallic ‘Flex Silver’ with a contrasting orange retractable fabric roof, Concept BlueSport marks an evolution of Volkswagen design with short front and rear overhangs complemented by a set of unique multi-spoke 19-inch alloy wheels.  The rear features distinctive high-intensity LED light clusters above an aerodynamic diffuser which incorporates twin tailpipes.

Measuring 3,990 mm in length, 1,260 mm high and 1,745 mm wide the Concept BlueSport is shorter than a Golf yet almost as wide.  Despite the modest proportions the Concept BlueSport retains practical features such as a 112-litre loadspace under the bonnet and an additional 70-litres in the rear boot. 

The colour of the Concept BlueSport’s orange roof continues inside, with subtle styling and cabin lighting accents.  The stylish lightweight sports seats are upholstered in black leather, while the dash-mounted touchscreen gives access to all information and entertainment functions.

The Concept BlueSport is a design study with no immediate plans for production. While it draws inspiration from the past it serves to reinterpret the concept of a mid-engined Volkswagen sports car.                                                          

Volkswagen Concept BlueSport
Body / Chassis  
Length 3,990 mm
Width 1,745 mm
Height 1,260 mm
Track, front 1,490 mm
Track, rear 1,520 mm
Front suspension MacPherson suspension
Rear suspension Multi-link system
Configuration Four-cylinder TDI,
2.0-litre displacement
Max. power
at engine speed
132 kW / 180 PS
at 4,200 rpm
Max. torque
at engine speed
258 lbs ft / 350 Nm
at 1,750 rpm
Drivetrain / Wheels  
Transmission Six-speed direct shift
Final drive Rear-wheel drive
Tyres, front 235/35 ZR19
Tyres, rear 245/35 ZR19
Performance / Economy  
0-62 mph 6.6 seconds
0-60 mph 6.2 seconds
Top Speed 140 mph / 226 km/h
Fuel consumption (Euro 6) 4.3 litre/100 km / 65 mpg
CO2emissions* 113 g/km
* in Eco mode:
Start-stop & regeneration
Exterior paint Flex silver
Convertible top Orange