At the ceremonial launching of Germany’s “National Electric Mobility Platform” (NEMP) in Berlin, Volkswagen presented the Golf blue-e-motion electric vehicle concept to German Chancellor Dr. Angela Merkel. NEMP is a German government initiative to develop Germany into a leading market for electric mobility, with about 1 million electric vehicles on its streets by 2020.
The Golf blue-e-motion and the technically closely-related Jetta blue-e-motion will launch on the market in 2013, after the debut of the Up blue-e-motion (a new city electric vehicle). In the same timeframe, the Lavida blue-e-motion will also launch in China. Volkswagen’s stated objective is to use bestsellers such as the Golf to take electric vehicles out of their niche model status and to become the market leader for a new type of sustainable mobility by 2018.
The Golf blue-e-motion concept is powered by an 85 kW, 270 N·m (199 lb-ft) electric motor integrated in the engine compartment in front. The electricity for driving the electric motor is stored in a 26.5 kWh lithium-ion battery pack. Top speed is 140 km/h (87 mph).
The Golf blue-e-motion offers a driving range of up to 150 km (93 miles); the specific range depends on driving style and factors such as use of the air conditioning and heating system.
This range meets the needs of most German commuters: According to the German Federal Statistical Office, 6 of every 10 people in the workforce commute by car. On average, 45.8% drive less than 10 kilometers (one-way commute), another 28.1% between 10 and 25 kilometers and 16.2% over 25 kilometers. The Golf blue-e-motion can also handle the driving ranges typically covered by many service providers./p>
To improve the range, the Golf blue-e-motion can “sail”. Sailing occurs whenever the driver—adopting an anticipatory style of driving—releases the gas (or electric) pedal. As in the drive system of the Touareg Hybrid, which is being produced today, the motor is then is disengaged from the drivetrain so that the car can coast with the least possible drag. The Golf blue-e-motion even recovers kinetically generated energy by battery regeneration in this mode of driving.
Adapted to the vehicle’s architecture, the concept car’s battery unit is located in the trunk space (useful remaining cargo capacity: 237 litres), under the rear bench seat and in the center tunnel (between the front seats). A separate air cooling system ensures a constant thermal environment in the battery compartment.
All key primary and secondary drive components were integrated in the engine compartment at the front of the vehicle. In coming up with this design, developers applied experience they gained in numerous design studies. As in the E-Up concept car, an integral form of electric drive is used in the Golf blue-e-motion.
Representing the core of the integral drive are the electric motor together with a transmission and differential. Energy management is handled by a high-voltage pulse-controlled inverter, which—along with the 12 Volt electrical system’s DC/DC converter and charging module—is integrated in the compact integral drive. The entire unit is relatively light and compact.
The five-door and five-seat Golf blue-e-motion, for example, weighs just 205 kilograms more than a comparable Golf BlueMotion TDI with DSG – despite the fact that electric car batteries are weigh 1,545 kilograms on the concept car.
Next year, Volkswagen will be testing the drivetrain and energy storage modules of the future Golf blue-e-motion with a fleet of 500 test cars.In parallel with its electric vehicle offensive, Volkswagen is accelerating
the introduction of new hybrid models as well. The new Touareg Hybrid is already on the market; in 2012 a hybrid version of the Jetta will debut, then in 2013 the Golf Hybrid and Passat Hybrid will launch.
Volkswagen will continue its development work on advanced and extremely efficient gasoline, diesel and natural gas engines (TDI, TSI, EcoFuel), because it is “an indisputable fact”, the company says, that a wide variety of drive technologies will coexist far into the future.