Ute candidates

Candidate pool Transformation of a passenger car into a Ute requires — obviously — cutting the entire body of the car somewhere behind the front door. A two-door configuration, other factors aside, provides more...

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Turbo S vs. 2.5 I5 models

Comparative specifications Of all the 1998-2010 New Beetles, the two that are most appropriate for a Ute transformation are either the Turbo S with the 1.8 turbocharged I4 engine, or any 2006-10 model since...

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VW fasteners

Background While automotive manufacturing has become increasingly standardized, strong country flavors remain, and this often requires the need for special tools. American cars often use SAE (Society of Automotive Engineers) measurements based on the...

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Smyth New Beetle Ute kit

Background The Smyth New Beetle Ute kit provides a cargo bed and rear body solution for New Beetle Ute transformations. Kit flexibility enables various customizations, such as rear lighting, interior treatment, and lift suspension...

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Modified functionality

Chopping off the back half of a New Beetle body has some implications for a few functions in the rear of the car. Dash indicators The New Beetle Turbo S dash displays an array...

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Anatomy of the 1.8 engine

Fully dressed engine The 1.8 turbocharged dual cam 20-valve engine has many variants — the example illustrated below is similar but not identical to the AWP code Turbo S version. In the Turbo S,...

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Ground clearance

Background Ground clearance significantly impacts comfort, handling (center of gravity), appearance, load capacity, and safety of all vehicles. Optimal height is always a trade off: lower clearance improves handling, stability at high speeds, and...

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Back end treatment

Background Removing the entire back half of the Beetle’s body opens up options for rear lighting — license plate illumination, reverse, running, brake, and turn signal lights — as well as tailgate and truck...

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Truck bed

Background The “truck bed” is the rear flat surface surrounded by bed front and side walls, and closed up at the end by the tailgate. Conceived for work, pickup trucks began their evolution in...

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ECU upgrade

Background One important advantage of the 2002-04 Turbo S version of the New Beetle is the performance flexibility of its 1.8T turbocharged engine. The AWP configuration in the Turbo S is essentially the same...

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