Currently reading: Volkswagen reveals 141mpg Passat GTE
Plug-in hybrid Passat will go on sale in the UK in the second half of next year, and gets 215bhp from its petrol-electric powertrain
3 mins read
1 October 2014

Volkswagen has revealed its new Passat GTE, a saloon claimed capable of 141mpg, at the Paris motor show

The plug-in hybrid – which is based on the eighth-generation Passat – can cover 31 miles on electric power alone, and offers a combined petrol-electric range of 622 miles.

Check out our first drive of the new Volkswagen Passat GTE here.

This is the third such model from Volkswagen following the limited volume XL1 and recently introduced Golf GTE.

It will be offered in both saloon and estate body styles when UK sales get underway during the second half of 2015.

At the heart of the front-wheel drive Passat GTE is a modular petrol-electric hybrid system shared with the Golf GTE. It uses a specially tuned version of Volkswagen’s widely used turbocharged 1.4-litre four-cylinder direct injection petrol engine that develops 154bhp at 5500rpm.

The transversely-mounted combustion engine is supported by an electric motor set within the forward section of the new car’s standard six-speed dual clutch automatic gearbox, where it delivers 113bhp and 243lb ft of torque.

More powerful than the unit used in the Golf GTE, the disc-shaped synchronous electric motor is capable of propelling the Passat GTE both independently for limited distance zero local emission capability and in combination with the petrol engine.

Energy for the electric motor is provided by a 9.9kWh lithium ion battery mounted under the rear seat. Some 1.2kWh larger in capacity than that used by the Golf GTE, it can be charged on the run via recuperated kinetic energy and the petrol engine or alternatively by plug-in means via a socket within the grille.

Charging time on a standard 240 volt system is claimed to take 4 hours 15mins. Customers can also choose an optional wallbox that operates at 360 volts and is claimed to reduce the charging time to 2 hours 30mins.

Together, the Passat GTE’s petrol engine and electric motor deliver a combined system output of 215bhp and 295lb ft, giving it with 14bhp and 37lb ft more than the Golf GTE.

As with its smaller sibling, the driver can choose between four different driving modes: “E-mode”, “Hybrid”, “Battery Charge” and “GTE”.

The interaction between the petrol engine and electric motor can be monitored on a 6.5-inch colour screen. Included is a so-called “range monitor”, “energy flow indicator”, “e-manager” and, in conjunction with the optional navigation system, “360 degree range” – the latter of which calculates one-way electric driving range over prescribed routes.


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In the default “E-mode” the Passat GTE is claimed to possess an electric range of up to 31 miles at speeds limited to 81mph. In “GTE” mode, in which the efforts of the petrol engine and electric motor are combined for maximum performance, it is claimed to hit 62mph from standing start in less than 8.0sec and reach a top speed of 138mph.

With official combined cycle consumption described by Volkswagen as being “over 141mpg” on the European NEDC test procedure, the GTE boasts an average CO2 emission rating of “less than 45g/km”.

With its 50 litre fuel tank brimmed and lithium ion battery fully charged, Wolfsburg’s newest plug-in-hybrid model is claimed to boast an overall range of more than 622 miles.

The GTE is visually differentiated from other more conventional eighth-generation Passat models by blue accents within the grille, a uniquely styled front bumper with low mounted C-shaped LED day time running lamps, GTE decals on the each of the front fenders and standard eight-spoke 17-inch alloy wheels.

Inside, there is blue ambient lighting, a leather-trimmed flat bottom steering wheel with blue stitching, unique instrument graphics, a restyled gear knob plus standard aluminium and high gloss black plastic trim applications.

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28 September 2014
Long live the EDC! Until Europe gropes its way around working out modern car's efficiency and emissions, we are totally dependent on the US EPA for accurate figures. While the manufacturer gets away giving us totally unrealistic figures as we've seen in the case of the notoriously inaccurate XL1. No wonder VW won't subject their XL1 to the US tests. Where I bet it will struggle to achieve 30% of the manufacturer claimed figures.

28 September 2014
Here in the US people use "real vs. official" mpg sites for similar reasons.

28 September 2014
MPG figures for plug-in hybrids are irrelevant.

28 September 2014
With an electric range of 31 miles, I would have thought the Passat would complete the whole official fuel test on electric power alone, therefore using no fuel. But if it is incapable of reaching 75mph (the maximum speed involved in the EUDC), then I guess some fuel would be required - perhaps explaining the figure quoted.
Surely it just needs a simple revision to the test procedure, perhaps starting the test with a discharged battery, to stop this nonsense. Everyone knows that in the real world, this car is going to achieve around 40-50 mpg in normal use, with higher figures only achieved for short distances after the battery has been charged.

28 September 2014
they need to move onto a different measures of energy, like kWH per mile or something, over the entire range of the vehicle, so you can get a proper idea. I would also be interested in electric only KWH per mile figure, so I can figure out how much my commute would cost if I plugged in each night. An MPG figure for that sort of use is frankly useless.

28 September 2014
622 miles on an 11 gallon tank is 56.55mpg. if you can't plug it in you'll get 591 miles, which is 53.73mpg. from what i can remember that's about the same as an i3 range-extender.

or, as is usually the case with these things, a xantia hdi.

28 September 2014
I had to look twice to see whether this was based on the old model or the new one, but there's a couple of extra lines down the side so I guess its the new one.

29 September 2014
Have loved the CC range for a long time and this incarnation may tip the balance as the economy is amazing. Down side - no 4WD version ?? will it happen or no space for the gubbins of 4WD ??
Comment on the writters info - I do NOT see the "standard eight-spoke 17-inch alloy wheels." in the images ???
My only other disappointment is PLASTIC and so called brushed aluminium (again plastic) trim. The shiny black attracts dust and is a pig to keep clean

29 September 2014
As my father-in-law commutes less than 30 miles a day 5 days a week it should work out as more then 140 mpg. In fact he'd probably only get though a gallon of petrol a week most of the time!

30 September 2014
If you only commute 30 miles a day it's the depreciation on a 30K passat that's the killer not the cost of fuel. A 2 year old nissan leaf at 10K might make more financial sense, a 6.5K Dacia or a 200 GBP bicycle.


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