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Paris show: Volkswagen plugs in Passat

Power-up: With a combined electric motor and 1.4-litre turbocharged petrol engine, Volkswagen's Passat GTE can cover more than 1000km without refueling.

Plug-in hybrid power train available in next-gen Volkswagen Passat

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Volkswagen logo30 Sep 2014

By TUNG NGUYEN

Volkswagen has pulled the covers off its new Passat GTE ahead of an official showing at this year's Paris motor show, revealing the new mid-sized sedan and wagon will have plug-in hybrid power.

Based on the upcoming eighth-generation Passat, the GTE plug-in hybrid will use an 85kW electric motor coupled with Volkswagen's 115kW 1.5-litre turbocharged TSI engine, to produce a combined maximum output of 160kW of power and 400Nm of torque.

According to Volkswagen, on a full charge the new Passat GTE can cover a distance of up to 50 kilometres in pure electric mode (E-Mode) and reach a top speed of 130km/h.

Combining the electric motor with petrol power boosts the top speed to 220km/h and increases the range to more than 1000 kilometres - enough to drive from Sydney to Brisbane.

Coupled with a 6-speed dual-clutch transmission, the GTE's powetrain sips just 2-litres of fuel for every 100 kilometres travelled but can accelerate to 100km/h in 8.0 seconds.

Setting the GTE apart from other Passat models is a redesigned front end with a unique chrome radiator grille featuring blue accents and new C-shaped LED daytime running lights, as well as special 17-inch alloy wheels.

Moving into the cabin, Volkswagen has given the hybrid Passat blue stitching highlights on the steering wheel, gear selector and seats, as well as blue ambient lighting and an optional Active Info Display system to display specific driving options for the car.

Volkswagen has also released its own hybrid vehicle smartphone app, called “CAR-NET e-Remote,” that will convey vehicle information to your phone and allow control of functions such as climate control and battery charging.

The Passat GTE is currently set to launch across Europe in the latter half of 2015 along with 10 other petrol and diesel Passat variants, and while Australia is also expected to receive the next-generation Passat at about the same time, the GTE has yet to be confirmed as part of the line up.

The outgoing Passat model has dropped 13.8 per cent in year to date sales, managing to move 1966 units by the end of August, compared to 2282 units over the same period last year.

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