Volkswagen, at the Tokyo Motor Show, is taking the experience it has learned from its extremely fuel efficient XL1 and turning that into a new concept vehicle known as the twin up! What will most likely stand out for those curious on this design study is the fact it has a European combined fuel consumption figure of 214 mpg.
At the heart of the twin up! is a compact, plug-in diesel hybrid drivetrain. This
55 kW (75 PS) drive unit—consisting of a 35 kW (48 PS) 0.8-liter TDI Clean Diesel engine, a 35kW electric motor, a seven-speed DQ200 DSG transmission, and the power electronics—is mounted at the front of the car. Installed at the back, behind the rear seats and under the trunk, is the “fuel storage system”: an 8.6 kWh lithium-ion battery, the 12-volt battery for the electrical system, and an 8.7-gallon fuel tank.
Besides the 214 mpg fuel consumption rating, which is a record for a four seat vehicle, the hybrid is capable of driving up to 31 miles in electric mode only. In this state of operation it also “accelerates from 0 to 37 mph in 8.8 seconds on its way to a top speed of 78 mph. In hybrid mode, the car delivers 159 pound-feet of torque, a high number for such a small car. Out of town, the twin up! goes from 0 to 62 mph in 15.7 seconds and reaches a top speed of 87 mph.”
Key features of the twin up! include a special “e-mode” button to activate driving in electric only; regenerative braking; special user control, status display, and climate control functions that are entirely digital; customizable, individual menus in the central infotainment system that can be called up by keys on the side of the display area or directly via the touchscreen and a self described “body-oriented” logic for climate control functions “which is able to adjust airflow and zonal settings for individually ‘perceived temperature’ for the driver or passenger. The climate control then automatically adjusts the temperature and blower speed.”