We’ve mentioned elsewhere that the Geneva motor show is an important event. Well, just as PSA announced its Citroen C4 HDi Hybride at Geneva in 2006, so Volkswagen unveiled the Golf TDI Hybrid at the same show two years later.
Volkswagen set out to beat 90g of CO2 per kilometre, and they did it, just. Fitted with the 1.2-litre three-cylinder version of Volkswagen’s common-rail diesel together with an electric motor, this Golf returns 89g/km, along with fuel economy of 83mpg overall in the EU test cycle.
Volkswagen Golf TDI Hybrid.
The diesel engine by itself delivers 75PS and 179Nm. These figures might not seem overly generous in a Golf, but the electric motor adds 27PS and 139Nm. Power comes from the electric motor alone, from the two power packs working together, or from the diesel engine alone. The wheels are driven by way of a seven-speed automated DSG gearbox.
The electric motor replaces both the starter and the alternator, and it also operates as a generator to recover kinetic energy during braking. It is the electric motor that’s the power unit of choice when pulling away from rest at moderate loads. The diesel engine cuts in if more acceleration or higher speeds are demanded. Under higher loads, the diesel works by itself, with the electric motor cutting in to assist during bursts of acceleration. A stop-start system is fitted.