Volkswagen Concept BlueSport at 2009 Detroit Auto Show

  • Looks like: Volkswagen swiped the plans for the TT from its luxury brand, Audi
  • Defining characteristics: Athletic looks, rear-mounted diesel engine, rear-wheel drive
  • Ridiculous features: Orange soft-top
  • Chance of being mass-produced: Seems unlikely anytime soon considering Volkswagen already sells a convertible — the Eos — in the U.S.

Roadsters aren't the most practical cars to debut in a down economy, but they're still a lot of fun to look at. Volkswagen's new Concept BlueSport has the look of a serious sports car, and it's powered by a rear-mounted diesel engine.

Low-slung and small, the Concept BlueSport features pronounced fender flares and a squared-off back end. The minimalist interior seems designed to keep the driver focused on the task of piloting this sports car, and the bucket seats are finished in leather.

The Concept BlueSport's 177-hp diesel engine uses common-rail injection. Power is delivered to the rear wheels through a dual-clutch automatic transmission, and the car can accelerate from zero to 62 mph in as little as 6.6 seconds, according to Volkswagen. The automaker also says the concept delivers fuel economy of 55 mpg, which is impressive even for a small roadster. The concept also has an Eco mode that includes an engine auto-stop feature.

More photos below.

Volkswagen 2009 Detroit Auto Show Concept Cars

Senior Editor Mike Hanley is a father of three boys; he reviews new cars, admires classic cars and has embraced the minivan lifestyle.  Email Mike