The Volvo XC60 Plug-in Hybrid Concept is
an electric car, a highly economical hybrid and a powerful
high-performance car all rolled into one.
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At the touch of a button, the driver
decides how the available power from the combination of the
high-performance petrol engine and the electric motor is to be utilised.
"The technology in the XC60 Plug-in
Hybrid Concept is as ingenious as it is unique," says Stefan Jacoby,
President and CEO of Volvo Car Corporation. "You can make really green
progress on the road without compromising on any of the luxury car's
renowned properties. No other manufacturer has succeeded in delivering
fuel economy and electrical range on this level in a capable, spacious
performance car with 350 horsepower on tap."
"This world-class petrol plug-in hybrid
technology, featuring a state-of-the-art four-cylinder engine from our
upcoming Volvo Environmental Architecture engine family, will reach our
American showrooms in a couple of years. However, it is too early to say
which model will be the first to feature this solution," Jacoby says.
Pure Hybrid Power - three cars
The driver chooses the driving mode via
three buttons on the instrument panel. The buttons give the car three
distinct temperaments: Pure, Hybrid or Power.
- In Pure mode the car is powered
solely by its electric motor as much as possible. The range
according to the European certification driving cycle NEDC is 28
- Hybrid mode is the standard
setting whenever the car is started. The petrol engine and electric
motor co-operate to provide maximum driving pleasure with minimum
environmental impact. According to the European certification
driving cycle NEDC, CO2 emissions are 53 g/km (2.3 l/100
km) - which translates into fuel economy of over 100 mpg. The car
has a total operating range of up to 600 miles (960 km).
- In Power mode, the technology is
optimised to create maximum possible power. The petrol engine with
280 hp and 380 Nm (280 lb.-ft.) is combined with the electric motor
with 70 hp and 200 Nm (148 lb.-ft.). The electric motor's instant
torque delivery contributes to the car's acceleration from 0 to 60
mph in 5.8 seconds (0-100 km/h in 6.1 seconds).
Four cylinders with the same
power as a six-cylinder unit
The front wheels of the XC60 Plug-in
Hybrid Concept are powered by a four-cylinder turbocharged petrol engine
from the forthcoming VEA (Volvo Environmental Architecture) engine
family. This engine produces 280 horsepower and maximum torque of 380 Nm
(280 lb.-ft.). Power delivery to the wheels comes via a newly developed
eight-speed automatic transmission.
"In the XC60 Plug-in Hybrid Concept we
demonstrate that our forthcoming four-cylinder engines offer the same
high performance as today's sixes. At the same time, their fuel
consumption will be lower than in current four-cylinder engines," says
Peter Mertens, Senior Vice President Research & Development at Volvo Car
The concept car carries a "T8" badge,
which emphasises the combined 350 horsepower of the high-performance
four-cylinder engine and the electric motor. This moves the car into
territory previously occupied solely by eight-cylinder engines.
"It's time to stop counting cylinders,"
Mertens says. "Four-cylinder engines are the most effective way to
quickly reduce CO2 emissions and fuel consumption without
compromising customer expectations when it comes to driving pleasure and
Reduction of parts, weight and
VEA is a modular range of diesel and
petrol engines. The petrol versions come with direct injection,
minimised internal losses and balance shafts for maximised comfort.
Several levels of turbocharging open up
for flexibility that encompasses the whole range from high power and
torque variants to extremely fuel-efficient derivatives. In order to
cover all customer requirements, certain engines will gain added
performance via hybrid drive or other spearhead technology.
The modular format is based on a
standard of 500cc (30 cubic inches) per cylinder for optimum
thermodynamics. It could also be used to develop three-cylinder engines.
VEA offers several advantages
- The number of unique parts is
reduced. This promotes manufacturing efficiency, quality assurance
and efficiency of new development projects.
- The new powertrains are
considerably lighter than present engines with similar performance.
- Fuel economy is improved by up to
35 percent compared to engines with similar performance.
- Modularity and compact transverse
design are also ideal for future electrification developments.
Integrated Starter Generator
The engine in the XC60 Plug-in Hybrid
Concept has no conventional starter motor or alternator. Instead, there
is an Integrated Starter motor and Generator (ISG) connected to the
crankshaft, which is located between the engine and the transmission.
The ISG is capable of delivering an extra 34 kW (45 hp) during
acceleration. It also charges the battery during braking.
Charge the battery at home
The rear axle of the XC60 Plug-in
Hybrid Concept is driven by an electric motor producing 70 horsepower.
It is supplied with power from a 12 kWh lithium-ion battery pack
installed under the floor of the load compartment.
The battery pack is recharged from a
regular power outlet, at home or at a parking place. Recharging time
varies with the current. If 220V is available, a full charge with 12A
takes just 3.5 hours. With 110V/12A a full charge takes 7.5 hours.
It is also possible while recharging
the car to heat or cool the passenger compartment in order to make the
start of the journey more comfortable. This also means that more battery
power is available to propel the car.
The Volvo Sensus infotainment system in
the XC60 Plug-in Hybrid Concept keeps the driver constantly updated on
everything that makes the journey simpler, more efficient and more
entertaining. A few examples of available information:
- Best route to the destination
depending on whether the driver prioritises low energy consumption,
the fastest route or the shortest distance.
- Low Emission Zones where
sufficient capacity is needed for running on pure electricity.
- Charging stations with access to
- Locations along the route with
access to quick-charging facilities.
The driver can also connect to the car
via a mobile phone application. This offers convenient access to a wide
range of data, such as the battery's charge level, remaining range, and
the location and capacity of the nearest recharging station. Via the
app, it is possible to verify if the charger cable is hooked up and it
is also possible to pre-program the car's interior climate.
"Creating an intuitive driver's
environment that always gives you access to updated, useful information
is an important part of our product development. This includes that you
should be as updated when the car is parked as when you're behind the
wheel," says Stefan Jacoby.
The Volvo XC60 Plug-in Hybrid Concept
is painted in a special white color and the 21-inch wheels enhance the
muscular appearance. The interior features unique detailing and colours,
such as sober dark-blue leather upholstery and inlays of blue-grey wood.
The instruments have been tailored to
give the driver all the necessary information about petrol and
electricity consumption, battery charge level, remaining range and so
Electric four-wheel drive
The electric four-wheel drive in the
XC60 Plug-in Hybrid Concept is activated by pressing the AWD (All Wheel
Drive) button. Instead of the mechanical power transfer of conventional
four-wheel drive, the central control unit distributes power between the
petrol-driven front wheels and the electrically driven rear axle.
The electric four-wheel drive system
has been designed to provide better traction when starting and when
driving on slippery roads, for instance, in snow or mud.
Saves battery power for later
The driver can choose to save battery
power for later in order to drive on pure electricity later in, for
example, an urban green zone or in the heart of a city. When Save is
activated, the generator charges and tops up the battery pack if
necessary. The aim is to ensure sufficient battery power for about 12
miles (20 km) of driving on electricity.