Have you heard? Volkswagen is working on an electric car. The company hasn't exactly been secretive about the plug-in work it is doing, especially with Tesla Motors co-founder Martin Eberhard on board. The German automaker is working on a few plug-in vehicles like the eGolf compact and the eUp! city car. Today, VW released another torrent of information about the eGolf – excuse us, the "Golf Blue-e-motion" (yes, a blue emotion does sound like something they'd sing about on Sesame Street) – in time for a media event in Germany. In May, VW gave its first big update on the e-Golf.
VW plans to bring electric vehicles to market in 2013, squarely in the second-wave modern electric vehicle category, with the Golf Blue-e-motion now scheduled for 2014 (earlier, VW said the e Golf would come out in 2013). A 500-vehicle test fleet, though, will start running next year. The electric Golf is powered by a 26.5 kWh lithium-ion battery (30 modules, 180 li-ion cells) and a 85 kW (max) motor (50 kW continuous) and can go from 0-62 in 11.8 seconds. VW is citing a range of around 93 miles depending "on driving style and other factors" today, but says the car's official range at launch, "is expected to be significantly improved with the battery technology used then." With today's battery and an impressive Cd value of 0.295, the Golf blue-e-motion can hit 135 kilometers an hour (84 miles per hour). Like the Porsche Cayenne hybrid, the e-Golf:
To assist in this sailing ability, the e Golf has something that other major OEM electric vehicles lack: dial-in regenerative braking. There are four brake settings (D to D3) that run the gamut from zero resistance when the driver takes her foot off the accelerator to the setting that recovers the "maximum amount of kinetic energy." Another driver-selectable setting is the driving profile, which prioritizes range, comfort of dynamics. You can find details on these settings, and more, after the jump.can even coast or "sail" as it is called in the professional jargon. "Sailing" occurs whenever the driver – adopting an anticipatory style of driving - releases the gas pedal, or rather the electric pedal. The motor is then controlled to the zero-torque curve so that the car can coast with the least possible drag. In this mode of driving, the Golf blue-e-motion even recovers kinetically generated energy by battery regeneration.