|Golf GTE plug-in hybrid. Click to enlarge.|
Volkswagen will formally unveil the Golf GTE—a new plug-in hybrid (PHEV) version of the Golf hatchback combining electric mobility with the dynamics of a Golf GTI—at the Geneva Motor Show next month. The GTE marks the fifth drive type for the Golf, which is already available with gasoline, diesel, natural gas, and battery-electric drives, varying with markets. Golf GTE will arrive at dealers in the first markets world-wide in autumn 2014.
The Golf GTE packages a 1.4-liter 150 PS (148 hp, 110 kW) TSI direct-injection gasoline engine with a 75 kW electric motor; combined system power is 204 PS (150 hp), with torque of 350 N·m (258 lb-ft). Using the electric motor alone, the GTE is capable of speeds of 81 mph (130 km/h); with the TSI engine as well, the Golf GTE can accelerate from zero to 62 mph in 7.6 seconds and on to 135 mph (217 km/h).
|With the addition of the plug-in hybrid GTE, the Golf line incorporates all the relevant drive systems of today: gasoline, diesel, natural gas, hybrid, and electric.|
|This variety of products—the Golf TSI (including GTI); Golf TDI (including GTD); Golf TGI (powered by CNG); e-Golf; and Golf GTE—is made possible by the modular transverse matrix assembly kit, abbreviated to MQB (modularen Querbaukasten).|
|This modular technology platform, initially introduced with the current Golf in 2012 (earlier post), enables the manufacturing of Golf models with gasoline, diesel, natural gas, electric and hybrid drives from bumper to bumper at Volkswagen factories.|
|As soon as developments make it possible, Volkswagen added, the first Golf with a hydrogen fuel cell will become part of the range of drives.|
The name of the Golf GTE reflects its position in the line-up alongside the iconic gasoline-powered GTI and the diesel GTD: ‘GT’ stands for ‘Gran Tourismo’, ‘I’ stands for ‘Injection’, ‘D’ for Diesel and ‘E’ for Electricity.
The Golf GTE offers combined cycle fuel economy (provisional) of about 157 mpg US (1.5 l/100 km) and CO2 emissions of 35 g/km. Theoretical range is around 580 miles (933 km).
In pure electric mode (activated at the press of a button), the Golf GTE can travel up to 31 miles (50 km), depending on conditions. The 8.8 kWh lithium-ion battery can be charged in around three and a half hours from a domestic outlet, or two and a half hours from a domestic wallbox. The battery weighs 120 kg, giving the GTE a total curbweight of 1,520 kg (3,351 lbs).
The Golf GTE uses a six-speed DSG gearbox with a triple-clutch system specially developed for hybrid vehicles. The electric motor is integrated into the gearbox housing, while further hybrid components include power electronics and a charger. An electro-mechanical brake servo and an electric air conditioning compressor make for energy-efficient braking and air conditioning.
Visually, the Golf GTE combines elements of the look of the e-Golf and the GTI. The front bumper features C-shaped LED daytime running lights, like those on the e-Golf, as well as aerodynamic horizontal fins, like those on the GTI. Where the GTI features red, the GTE has blue accents, including across the radiator grille and into the headlights. The headlights, along with all lights on the GTE, are LED.
|Click to enlarge.|
The power meter supplements the tachometer on the left side of the instrument cluster; it also shows whether the high-voltage battery is being charged by regenerative braking or energy is being drawn from it. That is, the driver sees on this power meter how much system power is currently being used or at what intensity power is being regenerated. The speedometer remains on the right-hand side.
The color display which is located between the power meter and the speedometer (multifunction display “Plus”) also permanently shows the electrical driving range and the current operating mode. The lower segment of the multifunction display appears in a separate LED field—after starting the engine—along with the word "READY" which shows that the electric motor is ready to drive.
The 8-inch Discover Pro satellite navigation system with DAB radio and Bluetooth is standard, and includes bespoke functions for electric vehicles, including the ability to identify potential destinations on electric range, and electric charging points.
The current driving radius in “e-Mode” is shown by the 360° range in the local map. The highlighted area describes the all-electric driving range for a one-way trip. Charging stations can be displayed and used in route calculations.
The GTE will also feature an e-manager which allows the driver to preset vehicle charging, as well as interior cooling or heating. These functions can also be operated remotely using the Volkswagen Car-Net app on a smartphone.