By on May 4, 2010

Automotive News [sub] reports that Volkswagen has approved a plug-in electric version of its Golf hatchback for sale in the US by 2013. According to AN [sub]:

Called the Golf Blue-E-Motion, the car forms part of a broad-based electric-vehicle offensive by VW that will see similar versions of the Mexico-built Jetta and the Chinese-market Lavida also going on sale in 2013.

Powered by a 115-hp electric motor, the front-drive Golf will be VW’s higher-end EV, fitting above the Up! Blue-E-Motion subcompact “city specialist.”

At 3,406 lbs, the EV Golf won’t be an especially light car, weighing over 600 lbs more than the current Golf 1.6 TDI BlueMotion. Power comes from a 26.5 kWh capacity lithium-ion battery pack located in the floorpan’s middle tunnel. That gives the car a claimed range of 93 miles, although charging times are not being revealed. The Golf Blue-E-Motion has a claimed 0-60 time of 11.8 seconds, and will be limited for range purposes to 87 MPH. Volkswagen has not detailed differences in performance between the forthcoming EV Golf and Jetta.

Volkswagen will build a fleet of 500 Golf EVs for internal testing prior to its 2013 launch. In the meantime, the Touareg hybrid will be joined by a hybrid Jetta in 2012, and Golf and Passat hybrids in 2013. It is not clear if VW’s hybrid and EV offensives are the fruit of its cooperation with Chinese EV/battery firm BYD, or whether this heralds the death of VW’s TwinDrive concept. As Bertel has noted though, what this does confirm is that Volkswagen isn’t afraid of the odd hubris-laden gamble. We’ll wait on more technical and pricing details before we decide on the wisdom of this kind of EV bet.

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