Photo GallerySorry there are no photos!
Turning away from diesels for the moment, Volkswagen is launching its new plug-in, the Passat GTE.
This marks the second plug-in for Volkswagen’s European line-up, with the Passat GTE following in the footsteps of the 2015 Golf GTE. But beyond each running a version of a 1.4-liter TSI engine, these siblings each sport a different powertrain setup.
The Passat GTE is positioned as the more powerful of the two: its 115 kw (154 horsepower) turbocharged engine and a single 85 kw (114 horsepower) electric motor have a combined output of 160 kw (215 horsepower).
Volkswagen’s Golf GTE is smaller in every way. Its combined 150 kw (201 horsepower) hybrid setup is derived from a 110 kw (148 horsepower) engine and 75 kw (101 horsepower) electric motor.
Both use lithium-ion chemistry for the rechargeable battery. Volkswagen hasn’t yet announced the size of the Passat GTE’s battery, but it will likely be close to the Golf GTE’s 8.7 kilowatt-hours pack.
SEE ALSO: Audi Has More Plug-in Cars in its Future
Volkswagen also added a few design clues to separate the plug-in Passat from the non-hybrid version.
“The GTE’s main distinguishing features externally are its C-shaped LED daytime running lights and a blue bar across the radiator grille that extends into the headlights,” said Volkswagen. “There are special GTE features inside as well, such as an instrument cluster with power meter and an infotainment system with a menu matrix for functions and displays specific to each drive system.”
All-electric range for is estimated at 31 miles. With a completely charged battery and the 13-gallon tank filled, the Passat GTE can drive about 683.5 miles. Fuel efficiency and range calculations from Europe tend to be more generous than in the U.S. though, so these estimates may be a bit higher than real-world results.
The Passat GTE is now available at dealers throughout Germany for 42,250 euros ($47,597) for the Estate version and 44,250 euros ($49,850) for the Saloon. This is quite a bit higher than the gasoline-only Passat, which starts at $33,802 in Europe, so price may be a discouraging factor for many consumers.
Volkswagen has yet to release plans on adding additional markets in the future for the Passat GTE.