Volkswagen Unveils Lithium-ion e-Golf and Jetta Plug-In

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With the Touareg BlueMotion Hybrid on the way, the question has been which Volkswagen model will get the gasoline-electric combination next.  That question was answered May 3 in Berlin at the foundation event for Germany's "National Platform for Electric Mobility" with the announcement of a Jetta Hybrid in 2012, a Golf Hybrid in 2013 and a Passat Hybrid to follow.

Before the hybrids, however, VW will launch its e-Golf, a full-electric version of its current all-new Golf hatchback.  A total of 500 electric-drive Golfs will go into the hands of consumers for a test that starts next year.

The e-Golf gets an 85-kilowatt electric motor conjoined to a single-speed transmission and differential, producing a sizeable 199 lb-ft of torque available right at takeoff. Hardly a GTI, the zero-emissions Golf will nevertheless be able to sprint to 100 km/h in a respectable 11.8 seconds.

The big news is that the e-Golf will go back to being air-cooled! OK, maybe it's not the big news, as you won't want to be getting excited about a horizontally opposed internal combustion engine gaining entry into the VW fold anytime soon.  Air-cooled refers to the cooling process for the e-Golf's 26.5 kilowatt-hour lithium ion battery pack, which gets mounted under the rear seat and cargo floor.

How far will it go on a single charge? Volkswagen claims the e-Golf is good for 150 km (93 miles), so the majority of commutes will be well within reach, as will the ability to use the e-Golf for light delivery in the future.

The normal route for an automaker to go with an electric vehicle test is commercial fleet use due to the ability to monitor use and average high mileage, but Volkswagen has chosen to get real-world data by doing a consumer test before it goes into full EV production with three models in 2013.

The first production EV won't be the e-Golf, interestingly, but the Up blue-e-motion, a model Volkswagen refers to as "a new city specialist." A Golf blue-e-motion will follow, and be based on the next generation Golf that will also underpin the aforementioned hybrid.  VW will also launch the Lavida blue-e-motion in China.

Back to Europe, a consumer fleet test will allow Volkswagen to gather real world data before it launches three production EVs in 2013. The first production model will be the Up blue-e-motion city car followed by the next generation Golf blue-e-motion and finally the Jetta blue-e-motion.

©(Copyright Canadian Auto Press)

Topics: Hatchback, Sedan, Volkswagen, VW, e-Golf, Up blue-e-motion, e-Jetta, Electric,

Organizations: Volkswagen

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