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At the Vienna Motor Symposium, the Chairman of the Volkswagen Group, Prof. Dr. Martin Winterkorn, announced that the Volkswagen Group will be going into production with a range of models with plug-in hybrid technology starting in 2013/14.

In his announcement, Winterkorn said that over the mid-term, the plug-in hybrid offers great potential because it combines the best of two worlds in one vehicle: unlimited internal combustion engine performance combined with attractive electric mobility ranges in everyday driving. Winterkorn noted that there are no limitations to the vehicle’s speed, climbing or towing abilities. He also stated that plug-in technology has excellent potential for reducing CO2 emissions.

Electric mobility is the task of the century for the automotive industry and the European industrial community as a whole. Manufacturers, suppliers, energy providers, scientists and politicians—everyone must step up to the plate here.

—Martin Winterkorn

Winterkorn spoke in support of more targeted research funding, especially in the field of electro-chemistry for battery technology.

E85 and diesel engines. At the Vienna Motor Symposium, Volkswagen also showcased two new engines which will be available shortly: the 1.4 L TSI Motor E85 (the 118 kW twincharged 1.4L TSI adopted for use with E85 ethanol fuel) and the new 2.0l TDI (meeting US BIN5/ULEV emission requirements and targeted for the US market).

In the Passat sedan, the combination of the new TSI with a 7-speed dual clutch transmission (DSG) in E85 operation yields fuel consumption value of 8.8 L/100km in the NEDC driving cycle, equivalent to 144g CO2/km.

This represents a 7% reduction in CO2 emissions compared to an engine operated with Super gasoline fuel. The engine is slated for use in the Passat and Passat CC, initially in Sweden and Finland, where E85 fuel has been widely available for many years now.

The second-generation 2.0 l TDI, familiar from Europe, was modified and further engineered for the new Passat to be produced in Chattanooga exclusively for the North American market. To satisfy BIN5/ULEV emission regulations in the USA, it was necessary to reduce the engine’s raw emissions and install an SCR (selective catalytic reduction) emissions control system.

The 2.0 l TDI produces 103 kW (140 PS) and has 320 N·m (236 lb-ft) of torque. It accelerates the Passat from 0 to 60 mph in 9.3 seconds and has an electronically limited top speed of 113 mph. The car’s diesel fuel economy is 35 mpg, which is equivalent to about 6.7 liters per 100 km.



Let's hope they have more ambitious plans than GM's very limited ones for the Volt.


HEVs and PHEVs may be the most appropriate interim solutions to reduce fuel consumption for highway capable vehicles.

BEVs will play a major role as city vehicles for the current decade and as highway capable vehicles when batteries energy density has doubled or tripled. Widespread wireless charging facilities could reduce the size of the on-board batteries required.


E85 operation yields fuel consumption value of 8.8 L/100km in the NEDC driving cycle

If they combine turbo FFV with HEV/PHEV they would have quite a car.


Where these press releases miss the REEL boat is they note that E85 yields a 7% reduction in CO2... but wait! Using E85 in a PHEV would give us an 85% DECREASE in petrol use. (or something slightly less due to energy content) A FAR more important metric to people who care about the billions of dollars they have to spend on foreign oil. And if they are spending 80-85% LESS on foreign oil, they're keeping that money in the domestic markets (North America) where it pays for new JOBS and the circulating economy.

Note however that CEO Winterkorn's actual quote includes nothing about CO2 - the press release says he "stated" EV's potential to reduce CO2... Um, okay, I guess it's not important enough to include in the quote. Of course it isn't. Good to see the metric is fossil fuel NOT used - instead of CO2. Getting it!!


@Reel$$ - I think Dr. Winterkorn may have skipped citing a precise CO2 emissions figure for the PHEVs because of the different levels of CO2 emissions from the various methods of electrical energy generation and unpredictable percentage of plug-in-powered vs. liquid fuel powered driving.

As for using E85, I'd be more in favor of it if we weren't strip mining coal or blasting the tops off of mountains to mine it to provide process heat for some ethanol producers. Also, corn is not the best feedstock for ethanol. It takes lots of chemical inputs, including increasingly imported nat-gas-derived nitrogen fertilizer plus some pretty nasty pesticides and herbicides.

This release also states the E85 TSI is initially destined for Sweden and Finland. We probably haven't seen the current gasoline TSI here in the US yet because of EPA regs. It's a great engine and I hope VW figures out how to fix that at reasonable cost.


"Also, corn is not the best feedstock for ethanol. It takes lots of chemical inputs, including increasingly imported nat-gas-derived nitrogen fertilizer plus some pretty nasty pesticides and herbicides."

Corn is used because its a high efficiency plant, 2nd only to sugar cane.. but that wont grow in the midwest. We have lots of NG in the US, why not make the urea/ammonia fertilizer locally?

The herbicides and pesticides are pretty nasty.. to the bugs and weeds its designed to kill.


I hope that we can agree that corn grain is not the way to make ethanol. Cellulose is better and gasification is more versatile. We send more than $1 billion per day out of the U.S. for imported oil, then we just burn it and it goes out the tailpipe making smog.

It we pass OFS and get on with synthetic fuels, we can reduce that $1 billion per day going out of the country and keep it in the U.S. building fuel plants and adding cellulose front ends to existing ethanol plants. While we are at it, use the money to make IGCC front ends for existing coal fired power plants, they would be cleaner, more efficient and could make synthetic fuels as well.


#correction: Your "announced" first link redirects to a VW login page with an internal error, maybe it's only for journalists. Use https://www.volkswagen-media-services.com/medias_publish/ms/content/en/pressemitteilungen/2011/05/06/32nd_international.standard.gid-oeffentlichkeit.html instead , replacing journalisten with oeffentlichkeit ("publicity").

VW keeps upping its promises for 2013, while delivering pointless EV test fleets today. In May 2010 Car&Driver wrote
"Volkswagen is re-affirming plans to add hybrid variants of the Jetta in 2012, followed by the Golf and Passat a year later. But that’s not all, as VeeDub also says it will offer a fully electric Golf and Jetta soon after the arrival of the electric Up! city car in 2013."

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