Volkswagen's electric city car unveiled
15 September 2009

Volkswagen’s inauguration into the electric market will be this, the E-Up. Scheduled for launch at the end of next year, the model has 18kW batteries that can be charged in five hours, giving a range of 80 miles.

The E-Up will sit alongside electric and diesel versions of the Up city car and features a number of nods towards a full production model. The batteries in the concept are protected by a specially designed crash structure and are kept cool by a series of heat exchangers.

See the VW E-Up picture gallery

The electric system is compact and frees up room for passengers. The E-Up weighs just 1085kg - light considering the batteries alone weigh 240kg.

VW's 189mpg concept

Solar panels measuring 1.4 square metres help to back up the batteries. The Up is shorter than a Fiat 500, but has the same wheelbase, with minimal front and rear overhangs.

Inside, the car has a three-plus-one seating arrangement, allowing two adults to sit on the passenger's side and a child to sit behind the driver. The total load space is 80 litres, rising to 320 litres when the seats are folded.

The E-Up is designed to offer a zero-emissions alternative for people who only drive short distances. “Cars with pure petrol and diesel engines – which in the foreseeable future will continue to be unbeatable for mid to long-range distances – will be supplemented by cars like the E-Up in coming years,” said VW Group boss Martin Winterkorn.

Twitter - follow all the latest Volkswagen reviews, news and video

Find an Autocar car review

Driven this week

Join the debate


14 September 2009

Should sell well in Yorkshire.

There will also be a special edition to appeal to young drivers call the E-Up "Lad"

14 September 2009

[quote Autocar]The E-Up will sit alongside electric and diesel versions of the Up city car[/quote]

i think you mean petrol and diesel...

anyway i note the way the vw boss says a zero emissions alternative for short distance drivers (not mid or long) instead of saying a cheaper alternative...

electric cars, even in their prime element for short trips will not be cheaper.

14 September 2009

Looks good, and the shape is certainly developing - this looks close to production, especially side-on. Reminds me of the Lupo! An electric version will be especially good for the city, a place where I think Electric Cars are really worthwile and should save people money. Just need to get the buying price down. I think I prefer the front of the original Up! concepts, but maybe this will be a grower.

"The creative adult is the child who survived."

14 September 2009

[quote Mini1]Reminds me of the Lupo![/quote]

Just what i thought too.

And how is it light? 240 KG of batteries, means it weighs 845kg without them. More than a Toyota Aygo, and surely the electric motor weighs less than a convensional engine and gearbox? And the Aygo seats 4, not 3 plus one.

When the Up was going to be small, cheap, rear engined and drive it had a purpose, but now its yet another conventional small car, and being a VW it wont be cheap (i mean the real ones not this electric one)

And it looks like a Lupo. Nothing wrong with that, but why all the hype, we have seen lupos before.

15 September 2009

good point on the weight, no sign of it being light in reality. i guess the weight comes from vw including more extras that an aygo/107 would have. plus thicker steel panels/chassis. i think they build strong cars.

15 September 2009

[quote artill]and surely the electric motor weighs less than a convensional engine and gearbox?[/quote]

- surely not. A small, ~1 litre alloy block petrol engine and manual 'box should weigh no more than 200kgs, probably closer to 150kgs.

15 September 2009

When does the non electric UP come out?

15 September 2009

I thought the idea of the VW UP and its SEAT and SKODA pals were that they are to be the entry level sub £6000 cars.

16 September 2009

they are the entry level cars, just as the little lupo once was for vw, maybe people forget that you could spec up a lupo gti up to about £18k, they were £13k base spec. the cheapest 1.0 lupo was £7.8k. so if they do a small petrol engine UP for £8k that will be about right. cheaper price for the SEAT and the SKODA versions.

16 September 2009

[quote J400uk]When does the non electric UP come out?[/quote]

could be anytime but not just yet, 2011 perhaps. if they push maybe 2nd half of 2010 if the market is good for it. sooner rather than later i hope as the fox is not attractive, and the rest of VAG need a small car.

Add your comment

Log in or register to post comments

Find an Autocar car review

Driven this week