Volkswagen of America presented the latest generation of the e-Golf in a world premiere at AutoMobility LA. Compared to its predecessor, the 2017 e-Golf offers almost 50% more range, more power and new features. The 2017 e-Golf, which should be onsale in the US in Q2 2017, should be priced comparably to its predecessor, Volkswagen said.
For 2017, Volkswagen equipped the e-Golf with a new lithium-ion battery the energy capacity of which has been increased 48% from 24.2 kWh to 35.8 kWh. The new battery increases the range by about 50%, with the aim of a driving range of up to an EPA-estimated 124 miles (200 km) on a single charge. (In the New European Driving Cycle (NEDC), the 2017 e-Golf offers a range of up to 300 km / 186 miles.) The 7.2 kW on-board charger is now standard on both SE and SEL Premium trims, which enables the battery to be fully charged in less than six hours at a traditional charging station. When equipped with DC Fast Charging (optional on SE, standard on SEL Premium), the battery can be charged to 80% within an hour at a DC fast charging station (CCS, 40 kW).
The electric motor has been upgraded to deliver 134 horsepower (100 kW)—19 hp more than the first version of the e-Golf. At the same time, the maximum torque of the electric motor has been boosted from 199 pound-feet (270 N·m) to 214 lb-ft (290 N·m). The 2017 e-Golf runs zero to 60 mph more than a second faster than its predecessor—now in 9.6 seconds—and its top speed increases to 93 mph (150 km/h). Combined fuel consumption remains steady at 12.7 kWh/100 km in the NEDC.
The 2017 e-Golf offers new features such as the fully digital and interactive Volkswagen Digital Cockpit. With this optional system, all instruments—including specific e-Golf instruments such as the power meter—are virtually implemented on the 12.3-inch color screen. There are different information profiles which change the type of information displayed and the graphics in certain areas. Information can be integrated on driving, navigation and assistance functions and display phone contact images or album cover art.
The available Discover Pro infotainment system trim has a large 9.2-inch glass display with a completely new design. For the first time in a Golf, it is possible to individually configure the home screen. In addition, the innovative gesture control system, first debuted at CES 2015, is planned to become reality in the next two years for the US market.
Gesture control works in a wide variety of menus. All it takes is a hand swipe gesture to move the horizontally arranged menu items to the left or right, allowing the user to navigate through the main menu, change radio stations, or skip to the next song. The e-Golf continues to offer remote access via the Volkswagen Car-Net app (including battery charging and auxiliary air conditioning), as well as Car-Net App-Connect for compatible smartphones that offers Apple CarPlay, Android Auto, and MirrorLink integration and Guide & Inform services.
Volkswagen is also extending the range of driver assistance systems for the e-Golf in the 2017 model year. Forward Collision Warning with Autonomous Emergency Braking (Front Assist) adds pedestrian monitoring, which will warn the driver acoustically and visually, supply increased braking pressure, and if the driver does not react, apply the brakes in order to help mitigate a collision with a pedestrian as well as other vehicles.
An optional Driver Assistance Package for the SEL Premium will include the following features: Volkswagen Digital Cockpit, Adaptive Cruise Control (ACC), Forward Collision Warning and Autonomous Emergency Braking (Front Assist) with Pedestrian Monitoring, Blind Spot Monitor Plus, Lane Assist, Park Assist and Light Assist.
The facelifted Golf family debuted in Europe just a week ago (earlier post); the 2017 e-Golf is the first of the Golf family to being design changes to the US market. (The other updated Golf models should follow in late Q3 or so.) The standout exterior changes include new bumpers, front fenders and LED headlights and taillights. In the front, the new bumper integrates the unmistakable C-shaped LED auxiliary Daytime Running Lights and is accented by the traditional blue grille trim strip, which carries into the redesigned headlights. The rear was also designed to be more charismatic. Along with a new bumper, new LED taillights define the design. Inside, new décor and seat trim gives e-Golf a fresh look.
Production in The Transparent Factory in Dresden. The Volkswagen brand is converting the Transparent Factory in Dresden (earlier post) into a production facility again. From April 2017, the new e-Golf will be produced there in addition to the main Golf plant in Wolfsburg.Volkswagen will invest more than €20 million (US$21 million) in the development of the Transparent Factory into a “Center of Future Mobility”. In addition, Volkswagen Sachsen and Dresden recently agreed on a comprehensive partnership to foster e-mobility and digitalization which is to make Dresden a model city for sustainable, integrated urban mobility. Production of the e-Golf in Dresden will initially begin in single-shift operation. Customers will be able to take delivery of all the electrified models of the Volkswagen brand—the e-up!, the e-Golf, the Golf GTE and the Passat GTE—in Dresden in addition to the Autostadt in Wolfsburg.
One year ago, the Transparent Factory was converted into a “showcase for e-mobility and digitalization” for visitors and customers. More than 40 exhibits and vehicles currently give a glimpse of the future of mobility in an interactive, entertaining way. Since then, more than 75,000 people have visited the facility and more than 1,800 potential customers have taken the opportunity for a test drive with electric vehicles.