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Geneva show: Details of VW e-Golf, GTD emerge

Oz out of range: Volkswagen has no plans to introduce the all-electric VW e-Golf to Australia (images sourced from Autocar).

First production all-electric VW Golf, most powerful diesel Golf set for Geneva

21 Feb 2013

EXPANSION of the seventh-generation Volkswagen Golf range is well underway, with details of the electric e-Golf and sporty diesel-powered GTD emerging from Europe overnight, ahead of their official world debut at the Geneva motor show next month.

VW Group Australia communications general manager Karl Gehling ruled out the e-Golf for Australia, but as no official details of the GTD have yet been announced, was unable to confirm if or when that variant would be reprised for the Golf 7 here.

British publication Autocar reports that the first production electric Golf will have a 175km battery range, will take 11.8 seconds to accelerate from 0-100km/h and have a top speed limited to 135km/h.

Powering the e-Golf’s 85kW/270Nm electric motor is a 26.5kW battery pack that is said to take five hours to charge using a standard household socket.

By comparison, the similar-sized Nissan Leaf has a 80kW/280Nm electric motor and a 170km range from its 24kWh battery that takes 12 hours to charge using a 10-amp household socket or 6.5 hours using a 15-amp charger.

The e-Golf offers three driving modes – Normal, Eco and Range – that adjust power output and top speed, with Eco capping the car to 71kW and 120km/h. Range disables the air-conditioning and reduces top speed to 95km/h.

Autocar also has information about the GTD, which has a new 2.0-litre turbo-diesel engine that is more powerful yet more economical than the unit in the outgoing car.

Outputs of 135kW and 380Nm are 10kW and 30Nm up on the current GTD, and make for the most powerful diesel Golf yet, but it lags behind Opel’s 143kW/400Nm bi-turbo four-cylinder diesel Astra sold in Europe.

Acceleration from 0-100km/h comes up in 7.5 seconds, three tenths quicker than the Astra and six tenths quicker than the outgoing GTD.

The GTD returns impressive combined fuel consumption of 4.2 litres per 100 kilometres compared with 5.1L/100km from the Astra hatch and wagon – but still a vast improvement over the outgoing GTD’s 5.3L/100km.

The new engine achieves its power and efficiency using lightweight pistons and valvetrain components, reduced friction and better thermal management plus a lower compression ratio of 15.8:1 (compared with 16.5:1) and redesigned exhaust system.

As with most grunty Golfs, there is a choice of six-speed manual or six-speed dual-clutch DSG automatic transmissions.

Unsurprisingly the GTD shares some of the sporty styling cues of its petrol sibling, the GTI, such as special bumpers, side skirts, a boot spoiler, rear diffuser, chrome double-barrelled tailpipes and 17-inch alloy wheels.

Also included are sports seats, suspension and steering wheel plus stainless steel pedals.

Alongside the e-Golf and GTD at Geneva will be the Golf R Cabriolet and tiny Cross Up SUV, neither of which are destined for Australia.

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