Volkswagen says it will be enhancing its model range with an innovative spectrum of completely new drive systems. These include mild hybrid drives with 48V technology, new high-tech diesel engines that will also be available as hybrid variants and what it claims is currently the world’s most cutting-edge natural gas drive.
Volkswagen announced initial information abut the new powertrains as part of last week’s Vienna Motor Symposium. The technologies showcased in Vienna as world premieres form a vital part of the Volkswagen drive strategy. It involves the combination of state-of-the-art petrol, diesel and natural gas engines, new hybrid systems and purely electric drives. With this combination, Volkswagen says it will among other things meet the CO₂ fleet emissions target of 95 g/km prescribed in the EU as of 2020.
World premiere I: 48V mild hybrid. One of the most important, new drive systems is a 48V mild hybrid. Volkswagen will initially launch this variant on the market for the next Golf generation. With the new 48V technology, Volkswagen aims to make hybrid drives affordable to an extremely large clientèle. Volkswagen will gradually extend the electrification of conventional drives to the entire fleet. The next Golf represents the starting point in this worldwide electric campaign.
World premiere II: 1.5 TGI Evo natural gas engine (EA211 Evo). Another technical highlight in Vienna is the new 1.5 TGI Evo natural gas engine. The 1.5-litre direct injector, fitted with VTG forced induction (latest-generation turbochargers with variable turbine geometry), is based on the 1.5 TSI ACT¹‘²‘³‘⁴ engine. Like its counterpart, the equally powerful natural gas engine, at 96 kW/128 bhp, uses the TSI/TGI Miller combustion process. For Volkswagen, the new 1.5 TGI Evo is a linchpin in its natural gas campaign. Its stated objective: further increasing the volume of natural gas engines operating efficiently and largely without generating particle emissions. On the German market, natural gas engines already represent the drive type with the strongest growth. Moreover, the TGI petrol engines can be run on e-gas – renewable CNG based on methane obtained from wind, solar, hydropower or biomass power generation processes. This engine is not scheduled to go on sale in the United Kingdom.
There is a range of 490 km (304 miles) in CNG mode. Thanks to the automatic switch to petrol mode, the range is extended by an additional 190 km, or 118 miles (all data has been calculated on the basis of the NEDC cycle).
World premiere III: 2.0 TDI diesel engine (EA288 Evo). Volkswagen says it is also “launching the diesel engine into the future”. In Vienna, Volkswagen demonstrated the completely new EA288 Evo product line 2.0 litre TDI engine development. For the first time at Volkswagen, the Group’s TDI four-cylinder engines will also be available in conjunction with hybrid systems; the EA288 Evo will already start as a mild hybrid drive with 12V belt starter generator on its first use. In conjunction with a lithium-ion battery, the mild hybrid system reduces fuel consumption and increases comfort. In general, what sets the new TDI engines apart is their extremely low emissions in all driving cycles. Volkswagen says they meet current and future emission stipulations for WLTP/RDE certification. The output ranges from 100 kW/134 bhp to 150 kW/201 bhp. The TDI engines developed by Volkswagen will initially be used at Audi in vehicles with longitudinally installed drive trains. The new TDI engines will also be used transversely in the MQB vehicles of Volkswagen and other Group brands in the future (MQB: modular transverse matrix).
The combustion process of the engines has been redesigned and improved both in terms of efficiency and in terms of raw emission behaviour. Volkswagen says the efficiency and response behaviour of the turbocharger have been significantly increased. Exhaust aftertreatment components – including diesel particulate filter (DPF) and SCR components (NOx treatment using selective catalytic reduction) – have been re-dimensioned and improved in terms of their effect and ageing stability. It was possible to reduce frictional losses, heat losses and engine weight. Volkswagen has also cut the CO₂ emissions of EA288 Evo engines by up to 10 g/km compared with the predecessor generation. As a result of these measures, these new TDI engines generate values below the limits laid down in current emissions legislation. Meanwhile, the power and torque values have increased by up to 9 percent.