The new Volkswagen Passat GTE will cost from £36,525 OTR, and goes on sale today.
This excludes the Government Plug-In Car Grant of £2,500. The first Passat with a plug-in hybrid drive system, the new car is available in saloon or estate body styles. The most environmentally friendly Passat to date emits 39g of CO2 on the EU Combined Cycle, equating to fuel economy of 166 mpg. Yet with 400 Nm of torque and combined system power of 218 PS, the new car can sprint from rest to 62 mph in 7.6 seconds before heading to a top speed of 140 mph. The potential range between refuelling stops is more than 660 miles.
The Passat GTE comes in two trim levels in the UK. On top of the standard features of the Passat GT (such as Adaptive Cruise Control with Front Assist and City Emergency Braking, Discover Navigation, Bluetooth and parking sensors), standard items include LED headlights and tail lights, Mode 2&3 charging cables and Car-Net e-Remote. Standard items on the GTE Advance trim also include the new Active Info Display, Discover Pro navigation (eight-inch screen), Nappa leather, Area View and LED premium headlights.
Despite its extra technology and revised styling, dimensions of the Passat GTE match those of the standard Passat, including boot volume (402-968 litres for the saloon and 483-1613 litres for the estate). Prices for the estate model start at £38,075 OTR excluding Government Plug-In Car Grant.
The plug-in hybrid can be driven up to 31 miles on electric power alone in E-Mode. A 1.4-litre TSI turbocharged petrol engine delivers 156 PS, while the electric motor adds a further 115 PS. The electric motor alone can provide up to 330 Nm of torque from near-standstill.
A specially developed six-speed DSG gearbox is standard on the Passat GTE and features a third, disengagement clutch. This decouples the TSI motor whenever possible, to allow the vehicle to make best use of kinetic energy and hence increases efficiency still further.
The new hybrid GTE features distinctive C-shaped LED daytime running lights and an additional blue line across the radiator grille: design cues which are shared with the Golf GTE. A redesigned front bumper and 18-inch alloy wheels also mark out the new car.
Inside, standard features include blue ambient lighting, a leather-trimmed multifunction steering wheel with blue decorative stitching, GTE-specific gear knob with blue stitching and seats covered in Alcantara with Vienna leather side bolsters. Unique GTE badging also marks out the new Passat.
Also standard is VW’s Car-Net e-Remote app which allows a wide variety of tasks – including charging – to be controlled via smartphone. All climate control functions can be also activated remotely, while information on the vehicle’s state of charge, recent driving data or last parking position can be displayed.
Under normal circumstances, the Passat GTE starts in pure electric E-Mode. When it reaches minimum battery charge hybrid mode is activated. Then the Passat GTE operates as a full hybrid, charging the battery under deceleration and automatically using the TSI motor and/or electric motor as required. If the driver wish to conserve electric power (for example to use E-Mode in a city at the end of a journey), Battery Charge mode can be selected. For maximum power, ‘GTE mode’ can be chosen which uses both petrol and electric motors.
Charging is achieved either via a standard UK domestic mains outlet in around four hours and 15 minutes; or in two hours 30 minutes from a dedicated wallbox with a 3.6 kW supply.
The new Volkswagen Passat GTE, in saloon or estate form, is available to order now with first registrations due in August.