Volkswagen Golf GTE, Friday news round-up

February 21, 2014 § Leave a comment

golf_gteVolkswagen’s launching the Golf GTE plug-in hybrid in Geneva: this gets the 1.4 TSI (150hp) with DSG transmission plus a 102hp electric motor to give a total 204hp/258lb ft output and a range of up to 580 miles (31 miles all-electric range). It’ll do 81mph in all-e mode, though; 135mph with the engine and 0-62mph in 7.6 seconds. Combined figures (provisional) are 188mpg and 35g/km. Charging takes 3.5 hours from a domestic plug, 2.5 hours from a wallbox. Volkswagen’s developed a smartphone app called Car-Net which allows remote operation of functions including presets for cooling/heating and charging (three years subscription will be offered). UK pricing will be announced late August with deliveries by the end of the year.

  • Some more lowdown on the Yamaha MOTIV.e city car, designed by Gordon Murray; it’s fitted with a Zytek-supplied electric powertrain with a single-speed reduction gearbox from Vocis and all power electronics by Continental. Its 25kW motor revs to a super-high 15,000rpm which allows it “to be smaller, lighter and more cost-effective than previous-generation units”; the motor’s 13kg, the gearbox 11kg and inverter only 7.5kg. The Zytek electronic vehicle control module includes thermal management with the algorithms (thought to be a unique feature) and integrates torque arbitration and voltage management with temperature control within a range of parameters including battery charge, temperature and grip at the tyres. Though still described as a “concept”, the MOTIV.e has been developed by GMD to sell “at an affordable price” (an aim of the iStream manufacturing process) and I think it’s fair to suggest we’ll hear confirmation of its production fairly shortly.
  • How do you get past the problem of missing the postman/parcel delivery/your online shopping order? Easy: get it delivered into the boot of your (connected) car. Volvo and Ericsson are to debut a system called Roam Delivery which relies on a one-time use digital key to access a car boot; more at Engadget and Green Car Congress.
  • Bhutan is aiming to become a zero-emissions, clean-energy nation, and to that end, has signed a deal with Nissan to develop infrastructure and supply cars to its government fleet. The tiny Himalayan nation produces far more hydropower than it can use, selling most of it to India, but has to import fuel for vehicles, apparently, so there’s an obvious solution there… In case you’re wondering, the capital of Bhutan is called Thimphu, and its EV-enthusiastic prime minister (since last summer) is Tshering Tobgay. More here.
  • Poo-power stories turn with some regularity (sorry) but this is a good one: the Orange County Sanitation District’s sewage treatment works at Fountain Valley (now there’s an unpleasant image), California is testing a prototype system to turn waste to hydrogen for fuel cell vehicles. This involves separating the water from the ‘biosolids’; the latter are piped to airless tanks and broken down by microbes, which releases a gas 60% methane, 40% CO2; the methane can then be used to power the works or broken down into electricity, heat and hydrogen. (Korean Herald via Autoblog Green).
  • Some more detail on the Hyundai Intrado (fuel cell concept) at Autocar.
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