GTE joins the existing GTI and GTD

Volkswagen is doing quite a bit to expand its family of “hot hatches” on the market. The garden variety Golf spawned the original GTI decades ago, and still lives on to this day. In recent years, the GTI has even gained a diesel variant called the GTD.
Today, the GTI will be joined by yet another variant: the plug-in hybrid electric GTE. German automakers are drawn to complexity for some reason, and the GTE is no exception. The GTE makes use of a turbocharged 1.4-liter TSI engine (whereas most hybrids try to stick with a simple, naturally-aspirated gasoline engine) that pumps out 148hp. A 101hp electric motor pushes total system power to 201hp and 258 lb-ft of torque.
Adding to the complexity is VAG’s six-speed, dual-clutch transmission (most other hybrids use a CVT or a modified automatic transmission to keep things simple).

While the GTE may have GTI roots, it definitely doesn’t have GTI performance. Volkswagen says that the GTE will take 7.6 seconds to reach 60 mph, making it over a second and a half slower than a standard GTI (and also slower than the GTD). However, the GTE’s trump card is that it can travel up to 31 miles on battery power alone thanks to its 8.8 kWh lithium-ion battery.
The GTE is based on the MK7 Golf, which uses the new modular MQB platform. Production of the first MQB vehicles destined for the United States (2015 Golf, 2015 Golf TDI, 2015 GTI) recently kicked off in Mexico.

The U.S. market is guaranteed to receive the fully electric e-Golf, but it’s still not known if we will eventually receive the GTE (although being MQB-based does make the possibility even more likely, as it could be produced in Mexico instead of Germany to keep costs down). 

Source: Volkswagen

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