Economy, Auto

VW to Sell 48-Volt Hybrid

VW to Sell 48-Volt HybridVW to Sell 48-Volt Hybrid

Volkswagen’s first vehicle with a 48-volt mild hybrid will be a Golf-sized model, as part of a push to catch up with firms like Tesla, Renault and GM who are spending huge sums to develop alternative drivetrain technologies.

VW’s currently unnamed future 48-volt mild hybrid is said to be underpinned by the company’s MQB platform.

The new platform underpins models ranging from the sixth-generation Polo subcompact that goes on sale in Europe in autumn to compact models such as the Golf hatchback and Tiguan SUV, as well as the Skoda Octavia and Seat Leon compacts, ANE Europe reported on June 30.

Automakers are adopting 48-volt systems to help fuel

efficiency as diesel cars face a consumer backlash because of their toxic NOx emissions. Renault is offering the technology on its latest Scenic minivan.

VW Group is looking for alternatives to diesels as several European cities plan to ban the power train to reduce the level of smog-causing nitrogen oxides (NOx) in the air.

The backlash against diesel has intensified since VW admitted in September 2015 that it cheated global emissions test and sold cars that produced NOx that far exceed government standards in several countries. VW Group has had to recall more than 11 million vehicles worldwide to fix the problem.

Another factor working against diesels is that to make them comply with tougher pollution rules expensive after-treatment solutions such as selective catalytic reduction (SCR) must be added.

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