Posted By RichC on March 4, 2008
I’m slow in mentioning Volkswagen’s Geneva Auto Show announcement of a Diesel/Hybrid hatchback. I’ve been waiting for a more definitive news from Volkswagen and how North America fits in to their plan. Nevertheless, enough time has passed that I should a least say something … and I’ll say what most TDI owners are thinking, “what has taken a company so long to market a diesel hybrid?”
The new VW diesel hybrid is a familiar looking car — in fact it is the ‘Ã¼ber’ successful Golf model. This new vehicle will use the 1.4 liter 74 HP three-cylinder TDI engine found in the Polo BlueMotion, according to the German automotive news publication Auto Bild. For the hybrid electric side it will mate with a 27 HP electric motor and a nickel-metal hydride battery in the rear. The computer management circuitry will also employ regenerative braking and start/stop engine capability seen in other hybrid vehicles. Unique to Volkswagen though, is how this diesel/electric power is delivered to the wheels. VW will used their 7–speed DSG gearbox rather than a CVT transmission in many hybrids. An impressive “energy monitor” will be on the instrument panel and will display exactly how the power is being produced and used. According to the press information, this VW TDI Hybrid will return nearly 70 MPG (69.9MPG), and it CO2 emission a small 90 g/km.
There is no news about ‘if’ or ‘when’ it will show up in the U.S., but according to a European report it will head to the UK late in 2009.