Making its motor show debut in production form alongside the new Volkswagen Golf GTI this week in Geneva is one of the world’s most fuel-efficient family cars: the new Golf BlueMotion. The latest Golf BlueMotion is a genuine five-seater, with all the Golf’s traditional attributes of comfort, safety and practicality, along with combined fuel consumption of 88.3 mpg on the combined cycle and CO2 emissions of just 85 g/km.
That’s a 15 per cent improvement over the previous-generation Golf BlueMotion, which emitted 99 g/km (now the emissions of a standard Golf 1.6-litre TDI). The original Golf BlueMotion, revealed at the Geneva Motor Show in 2007, returned, at that time, a class-leading 62.8 mpg with emissions of 119 g/km.
With its 50-litre fuel tank and 88.3 mpg fuel consumption, the new Golf BlueMotion has a theoretical range of 970 miles. Assuming an average annual driving distance of 15,000 km (approx. 9,300 miles), most drivers will only have to refuel 10 times a year.
The car’s combined fuel consumption has been achieved through innovative lightweight design (including 26 kg less weight in the running gear and 37 kg less in the body), engine-related modifications and a collection of other measures. These include super low rolling resistance tyres with higher air pressure, longer gear ratios (five-speed manual gearbox), the Stop/Start and battery regeneration systems that are standard in all new Golfs, plus specific aerodynamic modifications.
The frontal area of the new Golf was reduced by 0.03 m2 and aerodynamic drag (Cd x A) by nearly 10 per cent. Compared to other standard Golf models, the aerodynamics of the BlueMotion were also refined by a lowered ride height (by 15 mm), a roof spoiler, lateral air guide elements on the rear window, a masked front grille, partially closed air inlet screens, optimised cooling system airflow, special underfloor panels, optimised brake cooling channels and a C-pillar spoiler. These measures provide the Golf BlueMotion with a Cd value of 0.27, making the car one of the most aerodynamic in its class.
At the heart of the new Golf BlueMotion concept is a 1.6-litre 110 PS TDI from the newly developed EA288 engine series. The four-cylinder 16-valve unit develops its maximum torque of 250 Nm from just 1,500 rpm up to 2,750 rpm.
Various measures such as reduced internal friction, an innovative thermal management system with shortened warm-up phase, exhaust gas recirculation, cylinder pressure sensor, two-stage oil pump, switchable electric water pump and water-cooled intercooler right in the intake manifold result in successfully reducing fuel consumption and emissions. To reduce emissions values further, Volkswagen has also implemented an oxidation catalytic converter, a diesel particulate filter and a NOx storage catalytic converter.
UK Volkswagen Retailers will start taking orders for the new Golf BlueMotion in May, with the first deliveries expected in August. Pricing and exact specification will be announced closer to launch.