Have you always wanted a meticulously put together Volkswagen Beetle restomod? Well, here’s your chance, assuming you have nearly $600,000 burning a hole in your pocket.
This is the Milivié 1, and it’s a reinterpretation of the original Beetle in a way we haven’t seen before. The German company says there will only be 22 built (one for every million of the original 22-million-Beetle production run), and each will cost €570,000.
Your money buys you a Beetle that is surely nothing like any other out there. Milivié starts by finding a donor car, but all that remains of that at the end is a modified metal monocoque section of the body and modified floorboards. The rest is new. You’ll notice that the Beetle’s design is unmistakably that of a Beetle, but every body panel has been changed or modified in some way in an effort to create a modern shape and more modern design. Milivié says it used a number of Porsche styling cues when it was reshaping body panels to give the Beetle a far sportier look.
The engine is modified, but it remains faithful to the original ethos. Milivié uses a 2.3-liter flat-four that is based on the original block. It’s paired with two Weber carburetors and features a fully electric ignition system. The engine is modified with expanded oil channels, two oil pressure regulating pistons and individually balanced crankshafts. It breathes through a bespoke stainless steel exhaust system with either titanium or black chrome tips. Power figures were not provided for this revamped flat-four engine.
The only transmission is a four-speed automatic sourced from a Porsche 911 Carrera 2. Milivié developed its own transmission software to give you both a comfort and sport shifting mode. Plus, it’s manually controllable via paddles on the steering wheel.
You should expect this restomod to handle a good bit better than an original Beetle, as it’s sporting a totally new, fully independent, double wishbone suspension in front and rear. This is paired with twin tube dampers and “V3 Competition 2A” springs developed specifically for this application. Massive (for a Beetle) 19-inch wheels hide big performance brakes — six-piston calipers up front and four-piston calipers in the rear.
The interior is fully modern in restomod fashion. You won’t see any hard buttons or switches littering the dash, as Milivié has gone all out on touchscreens and touch surfaces. A pair of 12.3-inch screens serve as your instrument cluster and infotainment system. Software designed specifically for this car is used, so you can have a cluster layout that mimics that of the classic analog instruments. Of course, there are many other displays you can choose from in the settings, too, according to Milivié. A nine-speaker audio system is fitted, and a bunch of other tech like automatic headlights, parking sensors, front/rear cameras, auto climate control (yes, it has air conditioning), automatic wipers and electric steering is included.
The whole buying/designing process is done through Milivié’s “concierge” service that allows you to set the car up exactly how you please — reservations are open now. Milivié says there are lots of paint, upholstery and trim options to choose from, and that’s only the tip of the customization iceberg. That’s as it should be, though, given the price tag of well over half a million dollars.