ATLANTA, March 8 /PRNewswire/ -- Just in time for the Atlanta International Auto Show, Volkswagen announced that it will hold a special New Beetle Cup race at the Road Atlanta Motorsport Center, featuring high-powered New Beetle race cars. The race will be held on September 30 at the "Petite Le Man," which is part of the American Le Mans Series. The New Beetle Cup race will benefit local charities. The Atlanta event will mark the first time a New Beetle Cup exhibition race has been held in the United States. Beginning today, Volkswagen will display one of its New Beetle Cup race cars at the Atlanta International Auto Show, which runs through March 12. Drivers for this New Beetle Cup exhibition race will include international driving legends, top automotive journalists and celebrities. They will be driving high-powered New Beetle race cars equipped with Volkswagen's 2.8 liter, 24-valve V6 engine. Based on Volkswagen's road car engines, this powerplant delivers an unusually high torque of 270 Nm and a superb power output of 204 hp. Additional equipment includes a 6-speed road version gearbox, 18-inch wheels and special racing brakes. Security features include a driver airbag, roll cage, fire extinguisher and six-point safety harness. Atlanta will be only the second time a race of this kind has been held outside of Europe. Volkswagen announced earlier this year that it will hold a special race for its New Beetle Cup European series this June in Montreal at the Air Canada Grand Prix. Originating in Germany in 1999, the actual Volkswagen New Beetle Cup is held during the ten rounds of the German Super Touring Car Championship (STW). The Volkswagen New Beetle race cars are prepared and maintained centrally by Volkswagen Motorsport in Hanover, allowing drivers who can't establish and maintain their own teams to participate. To be part of the New Beetle Cup, competitors must pay 100,000 Deutschmarks (plus VAT). In return, Volkswagen offers half a million Deutschmarks as prize money.

NEW BEETLE CUP CAR Technical Specifications

Engine V6 Position Transversally mounted front engine Displacement 2800 cu. cm Valves Per Cylinder 4 Power Output 150 kW (204 hp) Rev Limit 6800 revolutions Maximum Torque 270 Nm Engine Software Bosch Fuel Unleaded Super Plus (98 octane) Gearbox 6 speed road version gearbox Clutch Road version Suspension Bilstein-H&R-Sport suspension, adjustable ATE- Racing anti-lock brakes front: 4-pot calipers, ventilated ATE Power discs, (diameter: 355 mm) rear: road version calipers, solid ATE Power discs, (diameter: 232 mm) Wheels 9x18 OZ BBS Tires Pirelli 235/825-18 (slick + rain) Safety Equipment Airbag, Roll cage, Fire extinguisher OMP, 6 point safety harness OMP Length/Width/Height 4081/1770/1450 mm Track (front/rear) 1550/1640 mm Wheelbase 2500 mm Weight 1200 kg