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Geneva show: VW goes cuckoo over Up concepts

Clock Up: Volkswagen is using the Swiss show to showcase a Swiss-themed, Swiss flag-coloured, Swiss army-knife touting version of its Up city car, although the company appears to have omitted a dashboard-mounted cuckoo clock.

VW to roll out four new Up concepts, super-frugal Cross Coupe drivetrain at Geneva

5 Mar 2012

VOLKSWAGEN is using the Geneva motor show to prove its Up city car – due to arrive in Australia by the end of this year – is as versatile as a Swiss army knife, with four new themed concepts comprising the Swiss Up, Winter Up, X Up and Cargo Up.

The Cross Coupe SUV concept, first seen at the 2011 Tokyo show as VW’s take on the Range Rover Evoque and preview for the next Tiguan’s styling, will also take its first European bow fitted with a new diesel-electric plug-in hybrid drivetrain claimed to consume just 1.8 litre of fuel per 100 kilometres.

Featuring the colours of Switzerland’s national flag, the Swiss Up’s paint scheme is described as “clear and dominating like the Swiss Alps”.

‘Tornado’ red exterior paint is complemented by ‘Porcelain’ white on the door mirror housings and wheel trims, while ‘Ceramique’ coloured leather is used on the seat bolsters, rear head restraints and the centre of the rear bench and brown suede-like Alcantara with white stitching is used to upholster other surfaces.

The red and white Swiss flag theme continues on the dashboard and there are holsters for the nation’s famous multi-purpose knife – but there is no sign of a cuckoo clock.

3 center imageLeft: Volkswagen Cross Coupe diesel-electric plug-in hybrid.

Based on the micro SUV-styled Cross Up that debuted in Frankfurt last year and is tipped for production, the roof of the Winter Up features a holder that can take four snowboards or six skis (an accessory already available for the Up in some markets).

Its electronic stability control system also features electronic differential locks that should help this front-drive car better negotiate snowy conditions.

The Winter Up is finished in white paintwork with light blue accents plus satin-effect, anthracite-coloured lower body cladding in usual crossover fashion. The interior colour scheme reflects that of the interior.

Also based on the Cross Up is the X Up, featuring a roof box with integrated search lights, slightly more rugged lower body cladding, ‘Burned Orange’ metallic paint and chrome-rimmed fog lights. Inside are hand-knitted Up logos and two-tone door inserts.

The Cargo Up micro-van weights just 929kg and has a 426kg payload, taking the term light commercial to the next level, and is aimed at pizza or pharmacy delivery drivers and as a promotional tool for businesses that want to emblazon the sides of this distinctive vehicle with their logo.

Featuring a 1400-litre flat-floored load area (compared with 951 litres for the passenger car), it is also fitted with two large under-floor storage bins, lashing points and a partition separating cargo from the cockpit, where extra document storage areas have been added.

Although it has just three doors – with the tailgate featuring privacy glass to prevent pizza poachers – the Cargo Up borrows the five-door Cross Up’s underbody protection and roof rails and rides 15mm higher than the three-door passenger Up, giving it an extra level of resistance to urban perils such as kerbs and pot-holes.

In addition to all the Up-related tinsel, Volkswagen will be demonstrating its strength as an engineering heavyweight at Geneva using its Cross Coupe concept, which is built on the company’s impressive new MQB modular platform.

Last November the Cross Coupe debuted at Tokyo powered by a powerful petrol-electric hybrid all-wheel-drive powertrain but for diesel-obsessed Europe, VW has supplanted it with a diesel-based, dual electric motor system.

Compared with the 195kW petrol-based system for which VW claimed fuel consumption of 2.7L/100km, the diesel has a total output of 225kW and consumes 1.8L/100km – translating to CO2 emissions of just 46 grams per kilometre, not bad for an 1858kg all-wheel-drive SUV.

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