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  (Source: Autoblog)
VW shows off beautiful diesel Roadster

When most people think of Volkswagen in the United States, visions of college-aged girls in Jettas and New Beetles or a bunch of hippies motoring down the highway in an old VW Bus often spring into focus. When it comes to truly sporting aspirations, the GTI is usually the first present day U.S. model to spring to mind.

VW is looking to change that perception today with the unveiling of the Bluesport concept at the Detroit Auto Show. The Bluesport bucks the trend of most concept vehicles unveiled at auto shows and is near production ready -- in fact, the mid-engine roadster is said to share the same platform with an upcoming "budget" Porsche model which is said to recall back to the 914.

The mid-engine Bluesport roadster is RWD instead of the FWD configuration found in most current VW models available in the U.S. Not surprisingly, VW dug way down into the parts bin to secure the magnificent dual-clutch six-speed transmission which can be had in the aforementioned GTI.

Most importantly, however, is the Bluesport’s source of motivation. The vehicle is powered by a 2.0-liter, four-cylinder turbodiesel engine (180 HP, 260 lb-ft torque) -- a less powerful variant of the engine used in the Jetta TDI. The engine propels the 2,646 pound roadster to 60 MPH in 6.2 seconds and runs out of breath at a respectable 140 MPH.

AutoblogGreen says that the vehicle is good for 54.7 MPG on the European cycle. Switching the vehicle into Eco mode pushes the figure slightly to 57.36 MPG. The numbers seem quite lofty, especially considering that the 3,230 pound Jetta TDI EPA rated at 30 MPG / 41 MPG (city/highway).

It's quite possible, however, that the 600-pound lighter Bluesport could achieve EPA numbers approaching 35 MPG / 46 MPG (city/highway) if VW does end up producing the vehicle (and even more miraculously, bringing it to the U.S.).



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Note to automakers
By judasmachine on 1/11/2009 11:52:59 AM , Rating: 5
Take note of this one. And before the Global Warming debate starts in here, I just want to say, "Bring on the new technologies." No matter what is(or isn't) happening to the planet. We could all benefit from being progressive.




RE: Note to automakers
By mdogs444 on 1/11/09, Rating: 0
RE: Note to automakers
By inighthawki on 1/11/2009 12:18:55 PM , Rating: 3
progressive:
"Moving forward; advancing."

Sorry no, i think this is a good idea in this situation.


RE: Note to automakers
By quiksilvr on 1/11/2009 2:23:46 PM , Rating: 5
Yeah and keep in mind with Blutec technology and other forms of advanced catalytic converters, diesel engines are becoming more and more eco-friendly. The petrol engine is vastly inferior to the diesel engine; the only benefit it has is that it used to have less harmful emissions.


RE: Note to automakers
By tank171 on 1/11/09, Rating: 0
RE: Note to automakers
By quiksilvr on 1/11/2009 4:15:01 PM , Rating: 5
You obviously have never heard of diesel additives that prevent gelling from occurring in subzero temperatures. On top of that there are methods to distribute the heat accumulated from engine to the fuel tank to ensure that the fuel tank doesn't freeze.


RE: Note to automakers
By Tamale on 1/11/2009 7:19:15 PM , Rating: 2
how cold can it be and that still work? even in ho-hum chicago we can see -20 Fahrenheit on an 'average' winter..


RE: Note to automakers
By Spuke on 1/11/2009 7:27:13 PM , Rating: 2
Have any of you ever watched Ice Road Truckers?


RE: Note to automakers
By rdeegvainl on 1/11/2009 7:54:34 PM , Rating: 5
is that the one where they keep the engines on all the time?


RE: Note to automakers
By Spuke on 1/11/2009 8:40:43 PM , Rating: 2
If you watched the show, you would remember that some of the vehicles were started dead cold. Nice try.


RE: Note to automakers
By SandmanWN on 1/11/2009 10:43:31 PM , Rating: 4
Not to intrude on the diesel/petrol debate but...

Sorry that is incorrect. Maybe the marvels of TV editing made it appear that way to you, but at those temperatures the engines can only be off for a very short amount of time. Whatever you saw being started had not been off long enough to reach those temperatures or was prepped ahead of filming.

The show itself made it perfectly clear on a number of occasions that engines not running for any prolonged length of time would not turn over and needed to be warmed through and outside source first. And they showed them doing just that several times.


RE: Note to automakers
By Spuke on 1/11/2009 11:58:54 PM , Rating: 3
The previous guy said they left them running assuming that was the only way these engines could run. I stated that some of the trucks were in indeed not running. Whether or not they had block heaters is irrelevant as gas engined cars require them at those temps also. The debate is whether a diesel engine can be used in extreme cold versus a gas engine. The answer is, yes, they can and have been used.


RE: Note to automakers
By michael67 on 1/12/2009 12:38:02 AM , Rating: 2
Yeah they also put some anti freeze in to the diesel, to prevent it from freezing


RE: Note to automakers
By Lord 666 on 1/12/2009 7:30:31 AM , Rating: 2
Can HCCI engines be a true "flex fuel" engine and use both gasoline and diesel?

In the WVO circles, people install tank heaters to keep their veggie blend around 180F during the winter. Some diesels also have heated fuel filters, not sure which ones though.


RE: Note to automakers
By Lord 666 on 1/12/2009 8:04:00 AM , Rating: 2
Forgot to add my only gripe with my diesel when it gets cold... It takes forever for the heater to be useful. Coldest I've driven the car is 9F/-13C. Took 20 minutes for it to blow warm air and by the time it did, I was already at mass transit


RE: Note to automakers
By Jimbo1234 on 1/12/2009 2:19:46 PM , Rating: 2
That depends on how much oil and coolant you have in the car as well as the displacement of the engine.

It takes time to heat water, and even more time to get your oil up to temp. It really does not depend on the type of engine. How quickly you drive does make a difference. Driving at city speeds will not warm up your engine quickly. Driving at highway speeds does (more HP required to move more quickly and therefore more heat to reject from the engine).

And if all else fails, you may want to get that heator core replaced.

BTW, 9F is hardly cold. When you get into minus double digits, then you can complain.


RE: Note to automakers
By Samus on 1/12/2009 8:51:34 AM , Rating: 2
VW has a Golf-platform 'Blueline' turbo deisel that achieves 80MPG. They had it on Top Gear a few months ago. Strangly I think it was a 3-cylinder, too. Although 3 and 5 cylinder engines aren't uncommon for European automobiles, the only car I can think of to ever have a 3-cylinder state-side is the ol' Geo Metro. I saw one in a junk yard once and thought to myself 'damn thats a small engine'


RE: Note to automakers
By juuvan on 1/12/2009 10:38:25 AM , Rating: 2
all VAG cars with 1.2L displacement engines are three cylinder engines. Polo, Ibiza, Arosa, Fox, Fabia, ...

Smart used to have three cylinder diesel engine.


RE: Note to automakers
By JediJeb on 1/12/2009 4:35:16 PM , Rating: 2
Some of the old Ford Fiestas had 3 cylinder engines also I believe.


RE: Note to automakers
By michael67 on 1/12/2009 12:35:19 AM , Rating: 3
I work offshore and sometimes i have to go to all the way up north to hammerfest.
(its on the border of the arctic)
It get down to -40 F/c (its the same)and we still drive diesel cars whit out problems, it just takes some preparation, engine and fuel tank heater isolation of fuel lines and tank circulation pump for fuel line and on all (long)parking spots a power outlet.

It takes about 50W of power to keep the fuel and oil from freezing (half that for a petrol cars engine) and as most people park inside during the night its not extremely expensive

Hammerfest, last stop before the end of the word, in the background you see the world biggest liquid gas plant in the world. (why people would go there for fun beats me)
http://www.hammerfest-turist.no/index.php?page_id=...


RE: Note to automakers
By safcman84 on 1/12/2009 5:18:59 AM , Rating: 1
I have a diesel. I dont know the fahenheit equivelent, but we have had -15c overnight here (EU) and my car still runs fine - takes a bit longer to start in the morning but that is a reconised problem with the model car I have - not a problem with modern diesels in general.


RE: Note to automakers
By Omega215D on 1/12/2009 2:33:55 AM , Rating: 2
Fuel lines in gasoline engines can freeze too. Hell, the battery will probably be the first to go in below freezing temps.


RE: Note to automakers
By Jimbo1234 on 1/12/2009 2:23:05 PM , Rating: 2
In the early 90's I had a fuel line (gasoline) freeze up. It was about -10F to -20F that day. The battery also died trying to get the car started. When the battery dies in that temperature, you'll have a massive problem: a frozen battery. Ever see what that looks like? It's closer in shape to a watermellon than a box.


RE: Note to automakers
By Alexvrb on 1/12/2009 7:50:43 PM , Rating: 2
A battery that is mostly-charged and in good working condition doesn't freeze until it gets much colder than that. It produces less power when cold, but you get a battery that is capable of producing the power you need at the temperatures you're going to experience. A jump box and/or booster/jump cables aren't a bad investment either.

Anyway, your gas line froze because you had water in it (or in your tank, or in your filter). Products such as "gas line antifreeze" are meant to prevent the water from freezing (and making it somewhat flammable so its easier for your engine to consume a little bit of it mixed with the gasoline). The best kind is Isopropanol aka Isopropyl alcohol. You should dump some in your tank every once in a while, especially during cold months.

This is less of a problem with 10% or more ethanol blends. This of course assumes you dont get an early batch of gas from a station that didn't clean their tank when they switched. But you should still run some kind of water remover once in a while, and ethanol brings its own issues with some motors.


RE: Note to automakers
By Jimbo1234 on 1/13/2009 3:02:37 PM , Rating: 2
It doesn't happen anymore. It was that one time, about 20 years ago. Gas tanks are sealed much better now and the moisture content is a non-issue. Last night it was -5 or so. The cars all start fine. I wouldn't touch the iso-"Heet" with a 10 foot pole today. And I don't worry about keeping my tank full like with the old vented designs.

No, the battery does freeze at those temps when it does not have a charge. Been there, done that. Trying to start the car, the battery was drained. A few hours later after trying to let the isopropanol do its job, the battery was frozen.


RE: Note to automakers
By twjr on 1/12/2009 5:35:54 AM , Rating: 2
Ever seen the Polar Special episode of Top Gear? They drove a Hilux to the North Pole. Sure it was quite modified and running on a diesel-avgas mixture and probably somewhat scripted, but they were started from cold and did make it to the Pole. It may not like the cold but there are ways around it.


RE: Note to automakers
By juuvan on 1/12/2009 10:44:59 AM , Rating: 2
They were at the north pole, where the problem is not the low temps, but the extreme humidity and wind. And did you see them cold starting the engines at any point? I didn't.

The problem is not that the diesel oil freezes but the additives in commercial diesel oil are crystallising and blocking the filters and/or the injectors. Most Diesel cars sold in scandinavia are equipped with heated fuel filters and the temperature minimum here was couple years ago -52C.


RE: Note to automakers
By Penti on 1/14/2009 10:41:31 AM , Rating: 2
You have different fuels for the different seasons, it's more like Kerosene in the winter. It's you that obviously don't live where it's cold.


RE: Note to automakers
By foolsgambit11 on 1/11/2009 5:31:27 PM , Rating: 3
It all depends on what metrics you're using to gauge the engine. Yes, the theoretical maximum efficiency of a CI engine is higher than an SI engine. Yes, diesel fuel packs more energy per gallon. But in order to achieve high efficiency and a clean burn, CI engines need to operate at much higher pressures, which means that the manufacturing process must meet much higher standards, which means much higher costs.

Also, I'd be interested to see what the barrel-to-tailpipe emissions are for diesel. Are more emissions released in refining for diesel? Purification? How much diesel do you get from crude versus gasoline (or are they non-equivalent, coming from different parts of the crude)? In other words, are the mile per gallon ratings really directly comparable, from an emissions or a conservation standpoint?


RE: Note to automakers
By quiksilvr on 1/11/2009 8:12:48 PM , Rating: 2
A simpler question that you can ask is this:
Can a petrol engine with a 2.0 180HP engine propel a 2600 lb car at 55 mpg without resorting to hybrid technology?


RE: Note to automakers
By Hoser McMoose on 1/11/2009 10:57:40 PM , Rating: 3
quote:
Can a petrol engine with a 2.0 180HP engine propel a 2600 lb car at 55 mpg without resorting to hybrid technology?

Simpler perhaps but much less meaningful.

1 litre of diesel most definitely is NOT equal to 1 litre of gasoline. It costs more, it has a higher energy content, it releases more CO2 and generally speaking it releases substantially more air pollution, even with the latest and greatest technologies to reduce this.

foolsgambit11's question was very valid. Comparing these fuels on a straight litre to litre (or gallon to gallon if you prefer) measure tells very little of value.


RE: Note to automakers
By foolsgambit11 on 1/12/2009 4:41:36 PM , Rating: 2
Yes, that was a simple question. And not especially helpful, either. The answer, though, is yes. Look, for a quick example, at the 1986-1990 Toyota Camry. Available with a 1.8L 86HP, 2.0L 116HP, or a 2.5L 160HP engine. Curb weight? Between 2700 and 2850 pounds. The government has a nice website which gives fuel economy numbers for cars back to 1985 - adjusted to be comparable to current test numbers. The 1986 2.0L Camry would test as 26 city, 31 highway. Camry also had a 2.0L diesel model that got 26 city, 33 highway.

That fuel economy site is pretty neat. It gives estimated carbon footprint numbers for each vehicle, too - if you buy into that kind of thing. Also the cost of fuel for the year, given 15,000 miles of driving, 45% city, 55% highway.
http://www.fueleconomy.gov/feg/findacar.htm


RE: Note to automakers
By quiksilvr on 1/13/2009 12:24:37 AM , Rating: 2
Um...the answer is clearly NO there ISN'T a petrol engine that gives you 55 mpg...that doesn't even give you 40 mpg.


RE: Note to automakers
By Hoser McMoose on 1/11/2009 10:51:45 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
Yeah and keep in mind with Blutec technology and other forms of advanced catalytic converters, diesel engines are becoming more and more eco-friendly.

Keep in mind that even with all these latest and greatest technologies diesel engines are still only just squeaking by to be legal for sale with modern air pollution restrictions in North America (coming to Europe by the end of this year).

That 'eco-friendly' 2009 VW Jetta TDI has the same air pollution rating a 2009 Chevy Suburban 2500 SUV with a V8 engine.

Diesel's use less fuel. The generate fewer greenhouse gas emissions per kilometre driven. But for air pollution even the latest and greatest diesels with particulate filters and SCR catalytic converters aren't all that great.


RE: Note to automakers
By Alexvrb on 1/12/2009 8:03:21 PM , Rating: 2
Even modern diesels are still not quite as cold-friendly, and they require more complex emissions systems to meet the standards over here in the states - especially California. California has low emissions fever. Anyone read the new california law on catalytic converter replacement? They were always emissions nazis, but this new law is pretty hilarious.

Anyway sorry for the mini-rant. The biggest problem I personally have with diesels is that the fuel is often more expensive than gasoline. So the MPG figures don't tell the whole story, when it comes to fuel costs.


RE: Note to automakers
By GlassHouse69 on 1/11/09, Rating: -1
RE: Note to automakers
By Bubbacub on 1/11/2009 7:33:31 PM , Rating: 1
what exactly did you mean by this?

volkwagon are like adolf hitler for having made a quick efficient diesel powered roadster

or

diesels are similar to jews and you don't like diesels

or

were you talking about how "progressive statements" can with hindsight be not so nice.


RE: Note to automakers
By judasmachine on 1/11/2009 2:30:52 PM , Rating: 3
I didn't mean it politically at all. I just love watching technology advance. Sorry it got Godwined.

Progressive, antonym of stagnant.


RE: Note to automakers
By Wererat on 1/13/2009 12:38:56 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
That depends on your definition of "progressive".


Yes, "progressive" as in "forward-thinking, innovative" as opposed to "progressive" as in "left-leaning political opinion which is ashamed of the moniker 'liberal'."

('Liberal' itself is a misnomer as ever-expanding government is the opponent of liberty, but the intent of people calling themselves 'liberal' has changed over time)


RE: Note to automakers
By FITCamaro on 1/11/2009 1:50:24 PM , Rating: 5
I'm all for turbo diesels. Especially V8 ones. Can you say 350 hp and 500 lb ft of torque?


RE: Note to automakers
By Amiga500 on 1/11/2009 2:36:08 PM , Rating: 2
I don't understand why you were rated down...

Although I think the td going into the back of the R8 is a v10... :-D


RE: Note to automakers
By killerroach on 1/11/2009 6:00:24 PM , Rating: 2
Nope, it's not a V10 in the TD version of the R8.

...it's a 6.0L, 493HP, V12.


RE: Note to automakers
By Bubbacub on 1/11/09, Rating: -1
RE: Note to automakers
By Spuke on 1/11/2009 8:42:46 PM , Rating: 1
quote:
until then stuff the environment and my wallet i'll stick with petrol
I thought all Europeans liked diesels and the environment? Or are you not European? You did use the word, petrol.


RE: Note to automakers
By Bubbacub on 1/12/2009 11:22:13 AM , Rating: 3
yeah i'm from the UK and I hate diesel engines. people use them in europe to save money - not because they provide a beautiful driving experience

its fine for buses and trucks, but till now i've never been convinced by them in performance vehicles

i will be happy to be proven wrong in the future


RE: Note to automakers
By FITCamaro on 1/11/2009 11:25:35 PM , Rating: 2
Only Ford diesels sound like school buses.


RE: Note to automakers
By MrPoletski on 1/12/09, Rating: 0
RE: Note to automakers
By Bubbacub on 1/12/2009 11:36:34 AM , Rating: 2
one word - turbo lag

its hideous. you are going into a high speed corner, you need the power to hold your line (rear wheel driven cars only) and you wait and you wait and eventually you get your power by which point you have either stuck your car in a tree or slowed down.

there is only one turbo charged car which i know of that doesn't have this and thats the BMW 335i - it had a 3 litre engine with 2 turbo's one very small which spins up very quickly and helps provide instant power up to the point that the main charger comes through with the power you need. i test drove one when it came out and it felt very much like a normally aspirated engine (doesn't sound like one though).

all of this is admittedly meaningless for road legal commuting


RE: Note to automakers
By Amiga500 on 1/12/2009 11:43:57 AM , Rating: 2
Or how about getting some driver skill instead ;-)


RE: Note to automakers
By Bubbacub on 1/12/2009 3:16:53 PM , Rating: 3
i'll race ya!


RE: Note to automakers
By Spuke on 1/12/2009 12:07:24 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
its hideous. you are going into a high speed corner, you need the power to hold your line
I've never had that problem with my turbo car. Boost hits immediately and very progressive. No lag here. I think you need to drive a newer (not 70's or even 80's) turbo car.


RE: Note to automakers
By Bubbacub on 1/12/2009 3:13:10 PM , Rating: 3
dude,
i don't NEED to do anything. i was just expressing my thoughts. most of my diesel experiences have been based on recent audi turbo diesels and have been largely negative. if i had a 911 turbo i would probably be in favour of them


RE: Note to automakers
By MrPoletski on 1/13/2009 9:04:26 AM , Rating: 2
"one word - turbo lag"

Turbo lag is probably not what you think it is, from the sound of it.

"its hideous. you are going into a high speed corner, you need the power to hold your line (rear wheel driven cars only) and you wait and you wait and eventually you get your power by which point you have either stuck your car in a tree or slowed down."

So you clearly need to learn to change down a gear!

"there is only one turbo charged car which i know of that doesn't have this and thats the BMW 335i - it had a 3 litre engine with 2 turbo's one very small which spins up very quickly and helps provide instant power up to the point that the main charger comes through with the power you need. i test drove one when it came out and it felt very much like a normally aspirated engine (doesn't sound like one though)."

Well you have two kinds of turbo, this one presumable has both, I guess BMW engineers know a lot more about engines than me and could say what the point of that is...

You either drive your off exhaust fumes or the engine crank. The former is with what you will experience turbo lag with, because they engine has to speed up *first* before the exhaust gases do and hence your air intake speed.

"all of this is admittedly meaningless for road legal commuting"

Which is very much my point.

Turbos are a fantastic way of increasing engine power without increasing engine size and consequently making very little difference to the vehicle weight.

Every time I talk about them with Americans (dunno where u are from) they whine about torque at low revs... presumably they need lots of this to get their fat butts moving ;)


RE: Note to automakers
By Spuke on 1/13/2009 4:33:50 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
presumably they need lots of this to get their fat butts moving
No, they're thinking of old turbo tech from the 70's. Until recently, we haven't had hardly any turbo cars in mass production. So people's perceptions of them here are very old. But that will change as more cars come with them because of CAFE requirements.


RE: Note to automakers
By MrPoletski on 1/13/2009 9:21:32 AM , Rating: 2
quote:
one word - turbo lag


Oh and that's two words, by the way.


RE: Note to automakers
By MrPoletski on 1/12/2009 5:56:25 AM , Rating: 2
Turbo diesels are a LOT of fun to drive.


RE: Note to automakers
By DeepBlue1975 on 1/12/2009 7:49:22 AM , Rating: 2
TD = Massive low end torque while still getting good mileage.

For some people the fun lies in having to rev up a car to 8000+ rpm to shift gears, for some others it is in the possibility of feeling the power surge right from the start without having to work the gears.

While younger (now 34), I enjoyed more something along the lines of the first example.
Now I'd appreciate more a car behaving like the 2nd case.

PS: to those who talked about noise, nowadays diesels are mostly pretty good in that department, in many cases you'd be even hard pressed to know if it's a diesel or a petrol engine you're hearing.


RE: Note to automakers
By Spuke on 1/12/2009 12:09:02 PM , Rating: 2
Today's diesel cars are very quiet. Even the newer diesel pickups are pretty quiet. I could care less about the noise because I actually like the diesel sound.


RE: Note to automakers
By Aquila76 on 1/11/2009 10:26:16 PM , Rating: 2
This thing is essentially a micro-Porsche and looks like it will be an absolute blast to drive. All the while it gets great MPG. That means it will never make it to the States.


RE: Note to automakers
By MrPoletski on 1/12/2009 5:51:37 AM , Rating: 2
yeah but isn't diesel really hard to come by in the states unless you are a commercial vehicle?


RE: Note to automakers
By Aquila76 on 1/12/2009 8:10:22 AM , Rating: 2
At least in New England, almost every gas station I go to has at least one diesel pump now. I think diesel is starting to become more 'mainstream' over here.


RE: Note to automakers
By FITCamaro on 1/12/2009 9:03:03 AM , Rating: 2
Nearly every gas station I ever see has a diesel pump. Very rare that you don't see it for sale.

The issue is more that it is now almost $1 more than regular.


RE: Note to automakers
By Spuke on 1/12/2009 12:10:25 PM , Rating: 2
Every gas station in California and Arizona that I've been to have diesel pumps. Even the few Mom and Pop places have them.


By wordsworm on 1/11/2009 1:38:18 PM , Rating: 2
I haven't seen any mention at all of their 1l/100km car that they're planning to release in 2010: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Volkswagen_1-litre_ca...

That's what I'm talking about. In American-speak that works out to 235m/g. It's about 5,000km from coast to coast (Vancouver to Halifax). Imagine, 50 liters of gas for a trip across the country. That's the pipe dream I'm talking about. That's about $60 to get across the country! Throw in a decent highway that reaches all the way to Argentina, and I can tell you I'd become the ultimate road warrior/travel blogger.




By Bladen on 1/11/2009 2:36:17 PM , Rating: 2
Imagine 4 blokes picking up your car and putting it onto the back of a truck because it only weighs 290kg.


By Omega215D on 1/12/2009 2:38:31 AM , Rating: 2
Sounds like a new market for Motorcycle/ car locks.


By Captain828 on 1/11/2009 4:24:02 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
The engine is a one-cylinder 299 cc (18 cu in) diesel producing just 6.3 kW (8.4 hp)

And uhm... how long will your trip from Vancouver to Halifax take??

IMHO, the concept is great and all, but... 8HP?! Think I'll get a Volt Speedster instead


By Hoser McMoose on 1/11/2009 11:02:20 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
And uhm... how long will your trip from Vancouver to Halifax take??

Trick question because the 8hp engine won't be sufficient to drive the car through the Rockies, you won't even make it out of B.C. let alone the other 7 Provinces! ;)


By wordsworm on 1/12/2009 12:23:22 AM , Rating: 2
At 100km/h, I'm sure getting there in 5 days is quite realistic. You could push it to 120km/h, but I don't think pushing a machine up to 100% for 5 days is a good idea.

http://www.oneighturbo.com/2008/05/10/volkswagen-p...

When they do plan on going into production, they'll be using a slightly more powerful engine.

If they can sell it under 10k, it'll be a phenomenal seller.


By Omega215D on 1/12/2009 2:40:42 AM , Rating: 2
Jesus, a 250cc single motorcycle makes more power than that, 2 to 3 times more. A single cylinder is also pretty bad in terms of vibration and torque.


By juuvan on 1/12/2009 7:22:14 AM , Rating: 2
and a methanol diesel in RC cars produce power equivalent of 1000hp/litre. How about that? Those are only 3,5CC with power output of 2,5hp.

Oh wait! Their fuel consumption is about 200l/h when scaled to one litre.

How much did you say the motorcycle engine did for a gallon?


By Omega215D on 1/12/2009 8:06:04 AM , Rating: 2
I was commenting that a 299cc engine makes only 8HP while a 250cc single 4 stroke engine (typically found on a motorcycle) makes much more power than that without vehicle size coming into the equation. I didn't mention anything about fuel consumption so I don't know why you did but if you must know it varies between 59 - 80 MPG depending on how high the thing is revved and aerodynamics of the bike in question.


By juuvan on 1/12/2009 10:34:51 AM , Rating: 2
your comment was as valid as mine. You compared an engine designed to be as fuel efficient as possible with high torque at low revs to an engine designed to produce high power output at high revs.

AVG consumption of a touring bike is somewhere around 50MPG. 125cc ones goes for 80MPG.

Do compare apples for oranges if you wish though...


By jRaskell on 1/12/2009 12:32:07 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
In American-speak that works out to 235m/g.


How exactly is 235m/g American-speak?


By Tsuwamono on 1/12/2009 10:48:33 PM , Rating: 2
its Imperial instead of Metric. MILES and Gallons are Imperial measurements.


By PlasmaBomb on 1/13/2009 7:21:00 AM , Rating: 2
with the slash meaning per, so miles per gallon, admittedly in a non conventional format. He even used your small US gallon...


looks are ok...
By BillyBatson on 1/11/2009 5:34:05 PM , Rating: 2
it looks like a cross between a Honda s2000 and a Hyundai Tiburon




RE: looks are ok...
By Omega215D on 1/12/2009 2:51:02 AM , Rating: 2
Kinda reminds me of an Opel GT.


RE: looks are ok...
By BillyBatson on 1/12/2009 4:21:17 AM , Rating: 2
we don't have Opel here in the US at least not that I have seen but I see what you are saying based on google images however the opel gt iself reminds me of a toyota spyder and the saturn sky


RE: looks are ok...
By Omega215D on 1/12/2009 8:00:41 AM , Rating: 2
Opel GT is probably a Saturn model in the US all under GM because I remember seeing a Saturn convertible that looked like this car and the Opel.

I blame Gran Turismo and BBC's Top Gear for introducing me to Euro cars.


RE: looks are ok...
By Spuke on 1/12/2009 12:17:59 PM , Rating: 2
The new Opel GT is indeed a Saturn Sky Redline clone and built in the same factory as the Solstice and Sky.


RE: looks are ok...
By Gul Westfale on 1/13/2009 9:50:12 AM , Rating: 2
the other way around... the saturn is an opel.


RE: looks are ok...
By Spuke on 1/13/2009 4:44:29 PM , Rating: 2
No. The current Opel GT is a Saturn Sky Redline clone built in the same plant in Wilmington, Delaware as the Pontiac Solstice, Saturn Sky, and Daewoo G2X (another Sky clone).

Current Opel GT
http://www.opel.com/brand_sites/gt/

Saturn Sky Redline
http://www.saturn.com/saturn/vehicles/sky/overview...


RE: looks are ok...
By Spuke on 1/13/2009 4:47:31 PM , Rating: 2
Here's a report of some layoffs at that plant. Notice what car is mentioned in the report.

http://tinyurl.com/92v7g7


RE: looks are ok...
By Gul Westfale on 1/13/2009 5:35:43 PM , Rating: 2
true, i was thinking of the old GT which was based off the lotus elise. the new one is essentially the saturn with different badges. my bad.


RE: looks are ok...
By Spuke on 1/13/2009 7:13:33 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
essentially the saturn with different badges. my bad.
No worries. You didn't know.


Very Nice
By L1011 on 1/11/2009 12:21:07 PM , Rating: 3
That's quite a good looking car and the combination of fuel efficiency and performance are equally impressive.

I'm still interested in how the VW Up! is progressing too. Hopefully DT will be able to get the scoop on that car soon.

It won't be long before gas hits $4/gal again and cars like this one and the Up! will be in demand.




RE: Very Nice
By Spuke on 1/11/2009 8:43:31 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
I'm still interested in how the VW Up! is progressing too.
I lost interest when they said it would be FWD.


RE: Very Nice
By Omega215D on 1/12/2009 2:48:51 AM , Rating: 2
What's wrong with FWD? The performance numbers seem really respectable.


RE: Very Nice
By Spuke on 1/12/2009 12:16:10 PM , Rating: 2
Don't like the understeer friendly suspension tuning that's typical of FWD cars from the factory. The new Chevy Cobalt SS is the only car that I've read about or driven where there was very minimal understeer from the factory. And since the Up isn't going to be a sporting vehicle, I expect the typical high understeer of non-sporting vehicles.

If it was RWD, it would oversteer first. And would be inherently more fun for me to drive. Some of you here would have fun in a Geo Metro. I need something a bit more engaging.


RE: Very Nice
By Lord 666 on 1/12/2009 7:12:55 AM , Rating: 2
Based on the parts bin, they should take the AWD drivetrain from the R32 along with the DSG pegged for this car.

Personally, I Would love an AWD TDI Passat or Jetta.


MPG not all made equal
By Hoser McMoose on 1/11/2009 10:42:21 PM , Rating: 3
Keep in mind that 55mpg on the European cycle is VERY different than 55mpg on the U.S. EPA cycle.

The original press release states 4.3L/100km. This is exactly the same as what the Toyota Prius is rated for, and it gets 46mpg on the U.S. cycle. The press release isn't clear on whether that rating is for city or highway driving, the authors of the autobloggreen article seem to be reading that into something that isn't stated. I would say though with a fair degree of confidence that the 46mpg figure is for highway mileage. City mileage is likely to be in the 30-35mpg range.

In other words REAL fuel economy probably will be quite similar to the VW Jetta TDI. Not surprising given that they use a very similar engine. The 'Eco mode' button probably just turns down the boost on the turbo.




RE: MPG not all made equal
By juuvan on 1/12/2009 11:00:49 AM , Rating: 2
European car manufactures usually quote the AVG consumption not highway or city consumption. The pump nozzle 140hp version of this engine in AWD Golf goes for 4,5l/100km in steady 90kmph. This RWD the newer generation CR injected and runs probably around 3,5l/100km on eco mode.

The eco mode probably affects the way DSG use gears and the ramp speed of mixture. In Europe this engine is available at 81kW. Quoted consumption is 4,4l/100 for highway, so I think your assumption is correct and the 46 is indeed highway milage.


RE: MPG not all made equal
By Spuke on 1/12/2009 1:28:23 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
so I think your assumption is correct and the 46 is indeed highway milage.
That's good enough for me. I showed the car to my wife and she likes it. We'll have to see what reliability and the pricing is like when it debuts.


VW?
By JAB on 1/11/2009 11:29:39 AM , Rating: 2
I want.

.....and that is the first time I thought that about a VW in a long long time.




Sweet...
By Captain Orgazmo on 1/11/2009 5:40:04 PM , Rating: 2
Gorgeous looking, huge range, open top: perfect road trip car! I wonder what will the price tag be? Also, when the heck are they gonna bring proper diesel (like Shell V-Power Diesel) to North America, like what has been in Europe for years?




By Lord 666 on 1/12/2009 7:18:30 AM , Rating: 2
US spec 2009 Jetta TDIs 2.0 produce 140hp and 236lb of torque. The 2.0 sloted for this car is much more powerful.

However, this car definitely does not remind me of a 914; thinking S2000 mixed with Scirocco and TT.




it's a VW
By ats0j8 on 1/12/2009 8:53:57 AM , Rating: 2
I've had two "high-end" VW Golfs, one in the 80's, another one in the late 90's (I believed all the PR that they were much better now). Both of them were shoddily put together and very expensive to maintain. Bits of bodywork kept falling off, the locks broke, the electrical system died, the cars stalled for inscrutable reasons. In fact, not only were they unreliable and badly built, many of the problems were identical: VW never bothered to fix them.

I'm never going to buy another VW again. Their cars look and handle great, but they simply aren't worth the trouble and expense.




Yawn
By Reclaimer77 on 1/11/09, Rating: -1
RE: Yawn
By Brandon Hill (blog) on 1/11/2009 12:18:12 PM , Rating: 2
Oh, so it must have 300+ HP to be fun? 180 HP is more power than is in a Miata and those cars are fun as hell to drive. And let's not even talk about the torque in a vehicle that light -- WHOOSH!


RE: Yawn
By Fenixgoon on 1/11/2009 12:18:22 PM , Rating: 3
let me guess, something about HP/L?

did you miss the part where the vehicle weighs 2600lbs and does 0-60 in 6.2s? Doesn't sound like much yawn to me, and it's certainly faster than the beloved Civic SI or VW's own GTI.

I'm sure it's also more expensive, but the boyracer crowd loves the HP/L argument. They seem to forget that magic thing called torque.


RE: Yawn
By Gul Westfale on 1/11/2009 12:35:55 PM , Rating: 3
it's reclaimer... he's just trolling.


RE: Yawn
By Amiga500 on 1/11/2009 12:40:07 PM , Rating: 4
"Horsepower sells cars, torque wins races"

- Carroll Shelby.

(But don't expect the boy racer crowd to know much about him)


RE: Yawn
By spread on 1/11/2009 1:17:03 PM , Rating: 2
Horsepower & torque go hand in hand.

Show me a car that has high horses with low torque.


RE: Yawn
By Brandon Hill (blog) on 1/11/2009 1:21:00 PM , Rating: 2
Honda S2000


RE: Yawn
By Trippytiger on 1/11/2009 1:59:37 PM , Rating: 2
Most Hondas, in fact, and any car with a Wankel rotary engine as well. Getting high horsepower out of a gasoline-fueled engine with low torque is easy - it just has to spin faster.


RE: Yawn
By Dreifort on 1/12/2009 10:32:04 AM , Rating: 2
what about Civic Si - sub 200 HP but decent torque


RE: Yawn
By Spuke on 1/12/2009 1:32:07 PM , Rating: 2
The formula applies to ALL engines.


RE: Yawn
By Amiga500 on 1/11/2009 2:32:45 PM , Rating: 2
Horsepower & torque go hand in hand.

<sarcasm>Really?

Oh please do explain it to me</sarcasm>

Examples of engines that are all noise no go have already been given. V-Tecs are notoriously useless until well onto the 2nd cam and at stupidly high revs.


RE: Yawn
By Solandri on 1/11/2009 6:20:35 PM , Rating: 2
horsepower = torque * RPM (with some constants and pi thrown in for unit consistency)


RE: Yawn
By Fenixgoon on 1/11/2009 3:46:42 PM , Rating: 2
high-revving engines without forced induction.

for comparison:

BMW M3 - 4.0L V8, 420hp, 295 ft-lb, 8300 rpm redline
Audi RS4 - 4.2L V8, 414hp, 317 ft-lb, 8250 rpm redline
Corvette - 6.2L V8, 430hp, 415 ft-lb, 6600 rpm redline

how do you get 180hp from a 1L motorcycle engine? you rev it up to 17000 RPM. same thing with the 2.8L V8's used in F1.

HP = TQ*RPM/5252 with torque in ft-lb


RE: Yawn
By Hoser McMoose on 1/11/2009 11:10:09 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
Show me a car that has high horses with low torque.

F1 engines.

According to Wikipedia the 2006 Toyota F1 engine had 740hp and 202ft-lbs of torque.

You don't need much torque to win races when you have a 7-speed dual-clutch gearbox that can change gears in under 30ms.


RE: Yawn
By Omega215D on 1/12/2009 2:59:56 AM , Rating: 2
I loved the Shelby Mustang GT350, that thing is a beauty even today.


RE: Yawn
By shabby on 1/11/2009 12:36:18 PM , Rating: 2
260ft/lbs of torque in a 2600lbs rwd roadster is far from yawn.


RE: Yawn
By Amiga500 on 1/11/2009 12:38:22 PM , Rating: 1
Idiot.

The fun in driving a car is in the corners - any clown can stamp on the loud pedal.


RE: Yawn
By Spuke on 1/11/2009 7:02:56 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
The fun in driving a car is in the corners - any clown can stamp on the loud pedal.
It's about the entire package. Straightline speed, crisp turn in, high grip, and stable transients. It ALL makes for a fun car.


RE: Yawn
By Amiga500 on 1/12/2009 2:42:31 AM , Rating: 2
Broadly agree... with the caveat that too much grip can be a bad thing.

Where is the fun in cornering on rails?

I'd rather be out of shape at 50 and having real, and relatively safe fun than needing to get to 80 before the tyres venture outside their friction circle.


RE: Yawn
By Spuke on 1/12/2009 1:34:08 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
Where is the fun in cornering on rails?
I find "out of my control" high cornering speeds exhilarating. I would rather grow into my car then to grow out of it.


RE: Yawn
By FITCamaro on 1/12/2009 9:30:47 AM , Rating: 2
quote:
any clown can stamp on the loud pedal


Tell that to people who drag in NHRA.

You have 3-5 seconds to drive correctly, not an hour or four.

Not debating that handling is important. But most of us have far more places where we can simply stomp on the pedal than take tight turns at 50 mph. At least without causing an accident. And you can get cars with both power and handling.


RE: Yawn
By FITCamaro on 1/12/2009 9:32:17 AM , Rating: 2
Also not everyone wants to wear out their tires and brakes road racing. Or has the money to.


RE: Yawn
By Amiga500 on 1/12/2009 11:42:43 AM , Rating: 2
Say what?

Any clown can stamp on the throttle.

Not any clown can balance a car into a four wheel drift.

Don't even try to argue that it takes even a commensurate amount of skill to go drag racing as it does to go circuit racing (and I don't mean left-turn-only circuit racing).


RE: Yawn
By Spuke on 1/12/2009 1:38:27 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
Don't even try to argue that it takes even a commensurate amount of skill
There's skill to it. Take your car out to the drags sometime. I've done it a few times and it does take some skill. Is it on the level of road course racing? I don't know, I'm not a professional at either. I do know some road racers that are well above average drag racers and they respect the skill levels of both camps.


RE: Yawn
By Totally on 1/11/2009 12:43:20 PM , Rating: 1
it has a 1:10 torque to weight ratio, it's not corvette/viper quick but it should be quick as or quicker than a camaro or mustang.


RE: Yawn
By vulcanproject on 1/11/2009 3:31:27 PM , Rating: 2
the base 4 litre V6 mustang can only muster 210bhp and 240lb/ft torque from an engine twice the capacity, with 2 more cylinders.

it'll do 60 in a shade over 7 seconds. by anyone's standards, this 'poky' 4 cylinder diesel would splatter said mustang all over the tarmac, and to boot it would no doubt slaughter it dynamically. lets not even talk about fuel consumption. different market maybe, but show some respect. how can that not impress.


RE: Yawn
By foolsgambit11 on 1/11/2009 6:05:15 PM , Rating: 2
And on the flip side, this year's Lotus Elise SC manages 218bhp, and a 4.4 second 0-60 time. Although it's something of a tragedy, if you ask me. Almost 2000lbs? A little tubby. I miss the 1600lb early models, even if they were only 118bhp, 5.8 second 0-60 cars.

Back on topic, VW looks to be trying to do what I've wanted to see for years now. 2.0L or less, fine tuned, low weight. Unfortunately, the market doesn't seem to want to pay for good performance. The market wants to pay for high performance numbers. HP! Torque! Who cares what the car weighs! And so, the markups possible on heavy muscle cars are much more enticing to car makers than the margins on smaller, fun-to-drive cars.

But imagine it: in the mid-80's, Honda Accords and Civics weighed about 2000 pounds and had 1.8L engines. Those 1.8L engines pulled between 80 and 110 bhp. Imagine sticking a modern 1.8L, fine-tuned engine into a car like that. Maybe you add a hundred pounds or so to the weight. But that car would still be a blast to drive.


RE: Yawn
By Spuke on 1/11/2009 7:15:46 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
Unfortunately, the market doesn't seem to want to pay for good performance.
The market isn't paying for anything right now. And when it was good the Solstice/Sky twins were selling very well. MUCH better than the Miata. People will pay for good performance but sports cars are traditionally niche vehicles and sell in low numbers. GT cars (todays muscle cars are really GT cars) usually sell in higher numbers because they're more practical. More storage, more room and a better ride make them more palatable to the general public.


RE: Yawn
By ZaethDekar on 1/11/2009 7:21:20 PM , Rating: 2
Err... Thats why you get the Lotus Exige S 240 or 260. 260 for sure! Its lighter and faster. (and looks better to me, i like hard tops) the S 260 is 2020 lbs with 257 bhp. The S 240 is 2077 lbs with 240 bhp and 170 ft lb of torque. Granted the Elise SC is 2006 lbs with 218 bhp & 156 ft lb, but it you took out some extra junk from the Exige S 260 you could drop it down to about 1900 lbs.

I also drive a 91 civ. 98bhp and 80~ ft lb (I think its a little less though due to it having 300000 miles with everything original) and its still a blast to drive. I don't have a TON of get up and go, but it still handles everything I have thrown at it. Even in a 1/2 foot of snow.


RE: Yawn
By foolsgambit11 on 1/12/2009 4:50:07 PM , Rating: 2
The Elise comes in lighter than the Exige, then - by 50 pounds or so. Either way, the point was just to take it to the extreme, and you're right that the Exige is definitely more extreme in a hp/torque to weight ratio.

The Japanese really had the right idea in the 80's and early 90's, I think. I wish we could get back to base models of small and mid-size cars having 1.6L or 1.8L engines. They could get well over 100bhp out of engines of that size these days, and that's plenty for real world driving unless you need to tow or haul something. Not to mention the fact that they made cars that lasted 300,000 miles.


RE: Yawn
By Spuke on 1/13/2009 5:24:19 PM , Rating: 2
You could get 200 hp with those engines nowadays. I could see a direct injected 1.8L with 12:1 compression cranking out 220 hp. Nissan had a 170 hp 1.6L back in '97. Never shipped it to the US though.


RE: Yawn
By Davelo on 1/31/2009 3:36:19 PM , Rating: 2
I agree. I had a 1992 Civic VX that got 50 mpg and could keep up with most in 0-60. I raced a Vette with it on a two-lane freeway on ramp. I stay dead even with the guy. The guy in the vette was like, "wtf?". The Civic could hit 60 mph in second gear and was scary quick being extremely light. Then there was also the time I embarrassed a Dodge Viper.


RE: Yawn
By walk2k on 1/12/2009 2:11:40 PM , Rating: 1
I agree. 2600lbs is very chunky for a roadster, my 3dr-hatch weighs 100lbs less than that (and has 201hp)! Though the torque is nice.

Unfortunately diesels are smelly, noisy, the fuel costs more which offsets the MPG, not to mention pending legislation that will restrict the emissions from diesels even further, which will cut into the performance of the US models, if they even bring it here, which is doubtful.


RE: Yawn
By UNCjigga on 1/14/2009 11:04:57 AM , Rating: 2
All the required safety equipment/safety engineering is what props up the weight. If you don't want it, get an Ariel Atom.


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