SEAT—the Spain-based member of the Volkswagen Group—earlier this year delivered three electric-drive cars to Barcelona City Hall: two Leon TwinDrive Ecomotive plug-in hybrids, and one Altea XL Electric Ecomotive, an all-electric zero-emissions car. The vehicles will be tested by Barcelona City Hall in its municipal car fleet for an initial six-month trial period, during which SEAT will gather information and assess performance prior to mass production of electric vehicles.
SEAT has loaned one e-Altea XL to Endesa, and another to the Catalan Energy Institute (ICAEN); a further two TwinDrives—one for each organization—are also to be provided.
The Altea XL Electric is SEAT’s first all-electric car. It has a range of 135 kilometers (84 miles), a power output of 115 hp (85kW), an engine torque of 270 N·m (199 lb-ft) and a top speed of 135 km/h (84 mph). The battery pack is located under the rear seats and the trunk, meaning no reduction in passenger compartment space, and it carries photovoltaic panels on the roof to cut energy requirements for the vehicle’s air-conditioning.
The Leon TwinDrive Ecomotive allows for all-electric or hybrid driving. It has a range of 52 kilometers (32 miles) in electric mode, with a top speed of 120 km/h. In mixed mode (electric and combustion) consumption is 1.7 liters/100 km (138 mpg US), emissions are under 39 g/km, and top speed is 170 km/h.
Prior to delivery of the electric cars, SEAT signed a renewal for the current year 2012 of the LIVE project (Logistics for the Implementation of the Electric Vehicle) with Barcelona City Hall. In this programme, initiated in 2010, other key-in-sector companies such as Endesa and Siemens, also participate so as to boost the use of the electric car in the city of Barcelona. The capital’s municipal services company B:SM is also signatory to the agreement.
SEAT is involved in other projects to promote electrical motoring in Spain. One of them—headed by SEAT—is CENIT VERDE, a public-private initiative comprising companies from different sectors, universities and research centres, and backed by the Spanish government. This project takes a global approach to research into the foundations for a successful introduction of the electric car in Spain.