Hot 400bhp Golf GTE Hybrid offers 141mpg
VW has just unveiled the Golf GTE Sport Concept at the 2015 Wöthersee festival being held in Austria to mark the forthcoming 40th birthday of the Golf GTi.
The GTE Sport Concept features a 1.6-litre turbocharged and direct-injected four-cylinder petrol engine that on its own produces 295bhp and 295lb ft of torque. At this point, it is worth pointing out that this is the same engine that the company uses in its Polo R WRC rally car which has helped the German company claim the World Rally Championship twice. What is more is that it is backed up by a pair of electric motors which when combined, add another 113bhp.
One of these electric motors has been located inside the housing of the six-speed dual-clutch gearbox whilst the second is located on the rear axle to give the Golf GTE Sport all-wheel drive ability. If you thought the combined output of 396bhp is impressive, that is nothing compared to the total torque available of 494lb ft. Even better is the fact that VW says the concept is able to travel up to 31 miles on pure electric power alone. In ‘Hybrid’ mode the petrol engine contributes to recharging the battery pack and motivating the wheels. Power for the electric motors is stored in a lithium ion battery pack.
But in the more impressive ‘GTE’ mode where the full 394bhp and 494lb ft of torque is unleashed, Volkswagen claim that the Golf GTE Sport is able to hurtle to 62mph from a standing start in just 4.3 seconds, go on to 124mph in 15.9 seconds and top out at 174mph. VW also say that the drivetrain would be able to sustain being raced too: “The boost effect is so strong that the drive unit would also perform well if used in professional touring car races.”
This stunning performance can be attributed to its wild-looking two-door body style which has been constructed, like the Bugatti Veyron and VW XL1, almost entirely out of lightweight carbon.
At first glance, the concept looks much like the GTI Vision Roadster concept which was unveiled at the Los Angeles auto show in November 2014. The new front-end design treatment is an indication of where the next generation of sporty Golf models could go in design terms. The front end of the GTE Sport features streamlined headlamp, air inlets and a cross bar.
The most striking angle is the side profile though where the C-pillars become a true outstanding feature of the car. Even these could make production, saying that a degree of perfection has been reached that allows it to leave the show car stage. Hidden inside the pillars are vents which direct flow down to cool the rear brakes.
Accentuating the rear pillars is the huge width of the rear. A set of upward-hinging gullwing doors – first seen on the wild-child Lamborghini Countach in the 1970s – take a bit of the door sill and roof and add purpose, if any were needed. The strict two-seater sits on fat 20-inch wheels which only serve to emphasise that this Golf means business.
This message is firmly conveyed into the futuristic interior too, where there are racing bucket seats complete with five-point harnesses. Carbon fibre is much in evidence and hidden behind the unique steering wheel are three transparent instrument displays.
The concept debuted at the annual enthusiasts' Ascension Day weekend event at Lake Wörthersee in Austria, where it has become a tradition for the automaker to unveil concepts and special editions directly to the most hard-core GTI fans.