24th February, 2011
Volkswagen is planning to release a Golf capable of an incredible 2.8 litres per 100km, with emissions of just 75g/km, by 2020. Planned EU regulations would require an automakerâ€™s entire range of passenger vehicles to average 95g/km by then – and thatâ€™s forcing European automakers to consider some radical fuel-efficiency solutions.
VWâ€™s ultra-green fuel-sipper will be released as part of the Golf 8 line-up; it will probably be badged as a blue-e-motion derivative and will include much of the technology featured in the new XL1 concept.
Itâ€™ll have an 800cc parallel-twin-turbodiesel, derived from the current 1.6-litre, four-cylinder TDI and developing only 35kW, permanently coupled to a 19kW electric motor, as in Hondaâ€™s hybrids, and driving a seven-speed double-clutch gearbox.
It wonâ€™t be able to run on battery power alone because the battery will be too small to power the car for more than a few seconds; the role of the electric motor will be to boost standing starts and for brief periods of hard acceleration, and to recover energy under braking.
The engine will have an alloy block and plasma-coated bores, as per the XL1, with a balance shaft to sort out the inherently unbalanced twin-cylinder layout â€”all of which is well-established motorcycle technology but hasnâ€™t been used in a diesel application before. It will probably also have the XL1â€™s â€œpulse startingâ€ feature, that spins the engine up to idle speed for the re-start, making the stop-start cycle practically undetectable.
Itâ€™ll also need significant friction reduction and aerodynamic improvement as well as a big weight loss. Sound-deadening material in the shell will be replaced by â€œwhite noiseâ€ sound cancellation working through the carâ€™s audio system and carbon fibre-reinforced composites could be used for the bonnet and roof panels.that the vehicleâ€™s viscous fan clutch be looked at critically; itâ€™s either been directed or bad. Replace it and your problem should be solved