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Volkswagen introduces new Coasting 2.0 micro hybrid system and new natural gas engine at Vienna Motor Symposium

At the 38th Vienna Motor Symposium Volkswagen is introducing a new, more fuel-efficient “Coasting - Engine off” micro hybrid system—which shuts off the engine completely—as well as a new, compact three-cylinder natural gas engine for the Polo.

Volkswagen is also highlighting its spectrum of efficiency and electrification solutions all the way to further optimized battery-powered propulsion as in the new e-Golf and the coming new MEB-based electric vehicles exemplified by its series of I.D. concepts.

Partially and fully electric drive systems form a key pillar of our drive system strategy. Our range of technology, especially that available for the Golf, now covers all customer preferences. The new 'Coasting - Engine off' micro hybrid system represents a low-cost level of electric-powered motoring on a 12-volt basis.

—Friedrich Eichler, Head of Volkswagen Powertrain Development

Coasting - Engine off. In the new Golf TSI BlueMotion, which launches this summer, the system works in tandem with a model DQ200 DSG gearbox. In a speed range of up to 130 km/h (81 mph) it offers the driver hybrid-style characteristics: lift off the throttle, and the Golf can coast with the engine completely deactivated. The system reduces fuel consumption in practical use by up to 0.4 liters/100 km and compared to the current coasting function with the engine running by 0.2 liters/100 km.

This new Volkswagen system adds a compact lithium-ion battery to the 12-volt vehicle electrics, with the battery supplying the electric consumer units with power when coasting. A so-called Q-diode regulates the current flow between the lithium-ion and lead-acid batteries.

At the end of the coasting phase the Golf TSI BlueMotion’s engine, a highly efficient 1.5 TSI Evo, is started in one of several different ways, depending on driving speed and situation: using the starter, using the clutches of the DSG gearbox or in combined fashion using starter and clutch.

New e-Golf. In the middle of the electric power range is the plug-in hybrid concept of the Golf GTE4 and at its top end the 100% battery-powered drive system, such as Volkswagen is offering in the new e-Golf. In this latest upgrade the new e-Golf’s electric motor delivers 100 kW of power and 290 N·m of torque, 15 kW and 20 Nm respectively more than before.

The e-Golf now accelerates from 0 to 100 km/h in 9.6 seconds and its top speed has gone up by 10 km/h to 150 km/h (93 mph). Through improvements to the chemistry of its cells and to their structure, the capacity of the lithium-ion battery system has also been increased from 24.2 to 35.8 kWh. This results in an increase in range in the NEDC cycle from 190 km (118 miles) previously to now up to 300 km (186 miles).

High-voltage battery system of the new Volkswagen e-Golf. Click to enlarge.

All-electric architecture. Volkswagen is taking on the next big step in the switch to electric power using the all-electric architecture. The first model using this completely new drive system and connectivity architecture will be launched in 2020. The BUDD-e5, I.D.6 and I.D. BUZZ7 concept cars that the brand has already unveiled give a look ahead to the great potential of the new architecture.

CNG and lambda split process. Volkswagen has been represented in the marketplace with CNG engines since 2002. The new three-cylinder turbocharged engine with a cubic capacity of 1.0 liter and high torque of 66 kW (90 PS) that is being shown at the Vienna Motor Symposium is bivalent: it can be run on gasoline or CNG. In gas-powered mode it works in a particularly low-emission manner—and that applies both to CO2 and NOx particulate emissions. The compact 1.0 TGI is a new engine specification for the small car class in the Volkswagen Group.

1.0 TGI engine with 66 kW / 90 PS. Click to enlarge.

A key factor in its low emissions is the optimum conversion of the methane in the exhaust gas. In order to bring the catalytic converter quickly up to operating temperature and keep it there, Volkswagen has developed a lambda split process.

During warm running and under low load two cylinders are fired using a rich mixture and one using a lean mixture. An important component of the technology here is the so-called lambda probe with no dew-point end. Thanks to electric heating, it is able to take up its regulating function within no more than ten seconds of a cold start, even if the exhaust gas and exhaust system still contain certain amounts of condensation.

Due to its chemical composition, natural gas as a fuel already reduces CO2 emissions if it comes from fossil sources. If, however, it is produced in a sustainable way, for instance as biomethane from agricultural waste, then looked at from well-to-wheel it facilitates a form of mobility that produces appreciably less CO2. We use the term e-gas to describe synthetically produced CNG that is made out of water and CO2 from renewable power generation’s excess current. e-gas is ideal for making renewable power usable for the transport sector and for storing it. It is in practical terms a partner in the switch to renewable forms of energy.

—Dr Wolfgang Demmelbauer-Ebner, Head of Volkswagen Gasoline Engine Development



I think this is cool, and develops skills and experience in VW towards a full hybrid.
What you need now is the ability to drive at say 100 kph on electric - I am guessing 15-20 Kw, so that rather than coasting, you can go on electric, like a hybrid or a PHEV.
Even if you had a car that could crawl through city traffic on electric, you would have something.
In my view, the key thing is to reduce the use of fossil fuels, you do not need to eliminate it in one fell swoop.
If you could sell 4 hybrids rather than 1 EV, you would save a lot more fuel.

Thomas Pedersen

The highly complicated and spatially challenges battery of the eGolf beautifully illustrates the need for the MEB platform, and why the eGolf should be discontinued when the I.D. arrives.

That said, VW, please go as far as feasible down the 48V route with gasoline-powered vehicles, preferably using the gearbox-mounted 10-15 kW e-motor.

PS. I wonder why VW finds it necessary to use an additional Li-Ion battery to power the AC and lights for the limited number of seconds of engine-off-coasting.

What is the maximum number of seconds you have ever coasted in your car? 5? 10? 20?

Juan Valdez

I don't see much value in coasting-off technology. Better is what Thomas said, moving to 48v with integrated starter/motor/generator. This could be a simple add-on to all their models.

It seems like they have all sorts of technology solutions chasing low-value problems. Yes, they are smart technologists, but moving to full hybrid systems quickly and simply is what they should focus on, not all these other technologies.

Jason Burr

48V micro/mild hybrid strikes a balance between price and performance that a lot more people are willing to take. Only so many people want to go full Prius, while a lot more still want to save gas. Manufacturers can implement this across entire model lines and reduce overall fuel consumption and emissions while full Hybrids tend to only be one model.

Add this to every SUV and truck and you will make a bigger improvement to fleet emissions and MPG.

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