Along with the e-Golf, it represents the first foray by Volkswagen into high-volume EV production. According to VW, the e-Up! takes the honors of being the most efficient EV, consuming just 11.7 kW of electricity per 62 miles. It's definitely not the quickest form of electrified transportation, crawling from 0-62 miles per hour in 12.4 seconds, or the fastest, with a top speed of 81 mph, but that's besides the point.
With three drive modes, Normal, Eco and Eco+, one can tailor the EV to use progressively less energy per mile. Eco and Eco+ ramp down the electric motor's power and other functions, such as air-conditioning, to extend mileage. Drivers also will have a choice of four regenerative braking levels, D1, D2, D3 and B, the first of which offers the least amount of power recovery and the last of which recuperates the most. Of course, the slowing effect of the electric motor (similar to engine braking) increases as regeneration levels increase from D1 to B, which not only will recover more energy, but also will change how the car drives.
The car is charged via a port behind the passenger-side rear door, and a standard 230-volt wall socket charger can fill the battery from empty within nine hours. Upgrade to a wall box charger for the garage or carport, and you're looking at an empty-to-full charge time of six hours. Be sure to take a look at the press release below for more information on the e-Up!
World premieres of the e-up! and e-Golf
International Motor Show (IAA)
Frankfurt, September 2013
IAA 2013 – Volkswagen electrifies high-volume production: e-Golf and e-up! debut as zero-emission double strike
e-Golf: Das e-Auto. Up to 190-km1 range, extremely frugal, LED headlights as standard
e-up! The world champion in efficiency. 11.7 kWh of electricity for €3 to drive 100 km sets efficiency benchmark
- Wolfsburg / Frankfurt, September 2013. In a double premiere at the International Motor Show (IAA) in Frankfurt am Main (10th to 22nd September) Volkswagen will be unveiling two new and extremely efficient electric cars: the e-up! and the e-Golf. The German carmaker is thus transferring two full-production bestsellers into the era of electric mobility. Both zero-emission cars are perfect for everyday use, four-door models in all cases and fully equipped. They include these standard features: automatic climate control, remote controlled parking heating/ventilation (air conditioning and heating), radio-navigation system, heated windscreen, alloy wheels, LED daytime running lights and in the case of the e-Golf all-LED headlights. They also lead the way in efficiency: in travelling 100 kilometres, the e-up! consumes just 11.7 kWh of power, making it the efficiency world champion, as no rival matches this figure. Two classes larger, the e-Golf also achieves an excellent figure of 12.7 kWh/100 km1. The result is that driving 100 km in the e-up! costs only €3.022 and with the e-Golf €3.282.
- Silently dynamic. Despite their great efficiency both the e-Golf and the e-up! produce a practically sporty level of performance. Even as cars with conventional drive systems both these Volkswagen models already have superior suspension. As a result of the low centre of gravity of the batteries integrated in space-saving manner within the car floor, the handling now becomes even crisper. Both newcomers also profit from a specific dynamic characteristic of electric cars: the practically silent electric motors generate a level of starting torque from standstill that is otherwise experienced only in cars of much greater horsepower. The motors, gearboxes and batteries of the e-up! and e-Golf are in-house developments, produced in German Volkswagen components plants.
- e-Golf facts and figures. The e-Golf, one of a number of cars making its world premiere in Frankfurt, is powered by an 85 kW1 / 115 PS1 electric motor. Like the motor in the e-up! it achieves speeds of up to 12,000 rpm and makes its maximum starting torque of 270 Nm available right from the off. The result is that the front-wheel drive e-Golf reaches 100 km/h in 10.4 seconds. On motorways the top speed of the five-seat Volkswagen is electronically limited to 140 km/h1.
- e-up! facts and figures. The e-up! is also making its public debut at the IAA. Its electric motor – as in the e-Golf a synchronous motor – produces 60 kW / 82 PS. Right from a standing start it thrusts 210 Nm onto the powered front axle. The four-seater achieves the sprint up to 60 km/h in 4.9 seconds and reaches 100 km/h within 12.4 seconds. Top speed: 130 km/h.
- Range levels tailored to commuters. From a single battery charge (18.7 kWh) the e-up! has a range of up to 160 km, while for the e-Golf, due to its larger battery (24.2 kWh), the figure is up to 190 km1. In both models three intuitive driving modes ('Normal', 'Eco' and 'Eco+') and four equally easy to activate levels of regenerative braking ('D1', 'D2', 'D3' and 'B') help drivers to get the maximum range out of each charge. Worth noting: research by Germany's Federal Ministry of Transport, Building and Urban Development found that around 80 per cent of all car drivers in the country, from commuters to motorists making lots of journeys, drive less than 50 kilometres a day.
- Powertrain and fuel strategy. Volkswagen set out its roadmap for the future and thus also the starting point for electric vehicles such as the e-up! and e-Golf back in the past decade with a structured powertrain and fuel strategy. This strategy assigns realistic timeframes to the introduction of new, alternative drive systems, such as hybrid, electric and hydrogen. In addition, Volkswagen has made it the company's aim to establish the brand as market leader in e-mobility (as in other areas) by 2018.
- 2013 is a key year for electric mobility. In the future Volkswagen will continue to rely on an intelligent mix of the most efficient drive systems. In this respect, battery electric systems – as will be shown by the new e-up! and the e-Golf – are both a sensible and essential addition. The reasons for this are obvious: first, electric vehicles enable large-scale utilisation of renewable energy sources (wind, solar, hydro) to power automobiles. For example, when it launches the e-up! in Germany this autumn, Volkswagen will be offering the ideal electrical power for the car ("BluePower"). This energy, generated without CO2 emissions, comes exclusively from hydro-electric generating plants in Germany, Austria and Switzerland. Supply and sales partners are the German company LichtBlick SE and the Volkswagen Bank. Electric cars also offer emissions relief to metropolitan areas based on their drive technology which always features zero local emissions. Furthermore, Volkswagen's electric vehicles are also a genuine alternative as, in terms of efficiency and recycling their battery technology, they are fully compatible with the requirements of high volume production. All drive system factors are thus now perfectly set for e-mobility to really take off. Within the framework of the company's powertrain and fuel strategy, Volkswagen will therefore, as mentioned above, be pushing forward in parallel with the introduction of new hybrid models. The Jetta Hybrid BlueMotion and the Touareg Hybrid BlueMotion are already in the model range. The next model of this kind due to follow next year is a Golf plug-in hybrid, which, in contrast to the standard hybrid, can also cover longer distances (50 km) solely on electric power thanks to a battery (with greater capacity) that can be charged from an external power source. Volkswagen will in addition continue to enhance its efficient petrol, diesel and gas engines (TDI, TSI, TGI), as these drive technologies will coexist long into the future.
- In time with big city life. The fact is that the target group for electric cars is growing, as a paradigm change has begun. A core focus of social behaviour is increasingly on sustainable mobility. But the products for putting this environmental awareness into action need to be suitable and enjoyable, like the e-up! and e-Golf, which accelerate up to the tempo of big city life in just a few seconds. The new zero-emission Volkswagens therefore have the potential to charge the electric car segment with innovative engineering, great everyday practicality and a dynamic feeling.
The e-up! – initial Facts
Public premiere at the IAA:
New e-up! is the most frugal of all battery electric cars
11.7kWh of energy for €3 to drive 100km sets new standard of efficiency
Navigation and information system with e-specific software as standard
Wolfsburg/Frankfurt, September 2013. From the middle of October, Volkswagen will be supercharging its model range with the brand's first electric vehicle: the new e-up!. Creating a double impact on the e-mobility stage, the four-door city specialist will be followed just a few months later, in spring 2014 (launch in Germany), by a further zero-emission Volkswagen: the e-Golf. Both electric cars will make their debut at the International Motor Show (IAA) in Frankfurt (10th to 22nd September), heralding the era of full-production e-mobility for Volkswagen. Henceforth Volkswagen will thus be offering in its vehicles every form of drive system relevant in the world today.
Low 'fuel costs'. The launch of the e-up! marks the introduction of a next generation electric vehicle that thanks to an armada of innovative detailed solutions uses energy extremely economically. The e-up! consumes, for instance, just 11.7 kWh/100 km. At an average electricity price of 25.8 cents (Germany, July 2013), driving 100 kilometres costs just €3.02.
Aerodynamics and rolling resistance
Perfection in the detail. The pioneering efficiency of the e-up! is attributable to the very good cD value for a car of this size of 0.308 (4 per cent lower than the take up!), optimised rolling resistance (7 per cent lower), the generally energy-saving drive system components, the highly effective regenerative braking system, innovative equipment modules and a newly developed, particularly efficient air-conditioning system.
Drive system technology
Made in Germany. A compact electric motor (60 kW / 82 PS and 210 Nm starting torque), the lithium-ion battery integrated into the floor and the power electronics form the hub of the new high-tech car's drive system. The electric motor's power is transferred to the front wheels via a single-speed gearbox. Volkswagen itself developed all of the components, including the battery. With a top speed of 130 km/h, the average range of the e-up!, dependent on route profile, driving style and payload, is between 120 and 160 km; at very low outdoor temperatures the range may be less. These range distances work especially well in urban areas and for the majority of commuters. In Germany, for example, studies by the Federal Ministry for Transport, Building and Urban Development found that around 80 per cent of all car drivers in Germany – from job commuters to drivers who make frequent journeys – drive fewer than 50 km daily.
0–60 km/h in 4.9 seconds. After 4.9 seconds the e-up! is going at a speed of 60 km/h; within 12.4 seconds it's 100 km/h. In 10.5 seconds it accelerates from 80 to 120 km/h. Top speed is 130 km/h. By way of comparison: the most powerful conventional e-up! (with 55 kW / 75 PS) accelerates from 0 to 100 km/h in 13.2 seconds and from 80 to 120 km/h in fourth gear in 15.5 seconds. The comparison shows that the e-up! blows away prejudiced views about the performance of electric cars.
204 cells in 17 modules. The lithium-ion battery fitted in the e-up! into the vehicle floor weighs 230 kg and is made up of 17 modules, each with 12 cells. These 204 cells add up to a rated voltage of 374 V and rated power of 18.7 kWh. At peak level the cells provide an effective power output of 75 kW and over a continual period 35 kW. The cell modules of the battery, measuring 1,726 mm long, 1,132 mm wide and 303 mm at its highest point, have been integrated, as already indicated, in space-saving fashion within the floor of the e-up!. Compared to other lithium-ion cells (e.g. from the field of consumer electronics), the battery system's cells are particularly resistant to heat and cold, meaning that no separate battery cooling or heating is required. Like the electric motor and the gearbox, the battery system, battery electronics and the relevant control software were also developed in-house at Volkswagen.
Energy flow interface. Another central element of the drive system is what is known as the power electronics. This complex module weighs 10.5 kg in the e-up! and, acting as the link, controls the flow of high-voltage power between the e-motor and the lithium-ion battery (depending on battery voltage between 296 and up to 418 V). In doing so the power electronics convert the direct current (DC) stored in the battery into alternating current (AC) and use this to drive the motor. Via a DC/DC converter it also supplies the vehicle's circuitry with voltage of 12 V.
Phase and traction cables. The power electronics module is connected to the e-motor via the sort of yellow-and-orange 3-phase cable typical for electric vehicles. The connection to the lithium-ion battery is established via two traction cables.
Direct current becomes alternating current. In respect of the all-controlling power electronics a distinction has to be made between two fundamentally different modes in which the e-motor operates: motor mode (propulsion) and generator mode (regenerative braking). In motor mode the power electronics use high-power transistors to convert the direct current (DC) stored in the battery into 3-phase alternating current (AC). In generator mode, meanwhile, the alternating current is rectified for charging the battery. In this scenario the power electronics resemble in terms of their task a valve that lets the electrical current flow only towards the battery to be charged. This maximum phase current of the power electronics is limited in the e-up! to 385 A.
High voltage becomes vehicle power circuit voltage. As mentioned above, the 2.5-kW DC/DC converter integrated into the power electronics is responsible for supplying the vehicle's 12-V power circuit and thus works like a transformer. The 12-V power circuit and the high-voltage circuit are completely separate from each other in the vehicle. Also included in the power electronics are the controller for running the management software and a CAN interface for communication with control devices. Last but not least, the power electronics module dampens the effects of any sudden loading of the drive system (for instance, at moments of sudden acceleration) by regulating the torque accordingly.
Electromechanical brake servo
A fusion of brake system and motor brake. Electric cars are essentially equipped with two brake systems independent of each other: on the one hand, as in conventional cars, a mechanical, hydraulically operated brake system is there to slow the car down. At the same time, however, the e-motor acts when recovering energy as a motor brake. These two types of braking now blend together in the e-up! thanks to the electromechanical brake servo.
The brake servo's task. Regardless of regeneration mode ('D1', 'D2', 'D3' or 'B'), when operating as a generator the electric motor generates a degree of braking torque on the wheels – dependent on its speed and the battery's temperature and charge level. The variable parameters – motor speed and battery state – lead to fluctuating levels of electric braking. These fluctuations need to be hydraulically compensated and the degree of deceleration matched in this way to the braking performance called for by the driver. The management of the brake system required for this is called brake blending and is achieved via the new electromechanical brake servo. Volkswagen has succeeded here in its primary aim of making maximum utilisation of the e-motor's potential to slow down the e-up! in order to increase its range.
Less wear on the brakes. As the majority of braking processes involve only minor or moderate deceleration and are therefore executed without any wear via the e- motor, the electric system helps to keep the 'normal' brakes in top condition longer.
A question of style. The other specific functions of the e-up! used while driving the car are practically self-explanatory. You have to think of the car's tank as a battery filled with electrical energy that empties during the journey. The faster you drive or the more you accelerate, the greater the amount of energy consumed. However, as the driver you have considerable influence over this level of consumption and thus over the range. The e-up! is able to switch off temporarily unneeded consumers and in general to transform kinetic energy – produced when coasting or by braking – into electrical energy and to store it in the battery.
Two economy profiles: 'Eco' and 'Eco+'. The range of the e-up! can be varied via three different driving style profiles: the standard mode (automatically on), 'Eco' and 'Eco+'. Anyone nipping around travelling short distances, will stay in standard mode. For drivers wanting to extend the range, the first option is the 'Eco' mode. The effects of selecting this mode include paring back the e-vehicle's maximum power output to 50 kW and limiting its top speed to 115 km/h. In parallel with that the electronics reduce the output of the air-conditioning system and modify the response curve of the accelerator pedal. In 'Eco+' mode the electronics limit maximum power output to 40 kW, modify the performance response curve and disable the air conditioning; in this mode the car can reach a top speed of 90 km/h.
Regenerative braking in D1, D2, D3 and B. Over and above the driving style modes the range of the e-up! can be influenced via the regenerative braking function. There are no fewer than five levels available: 'D' (regeneration via electromechanical brake servo only when applying the brake), 'D1', D2', 'D3' and 'B'. In an electric car this number of levels leads to a different way of driving. By means of regenerative braking drivers can appreciably slow down the e-up! by lifting their foot off the accelerator. Used in an anticipatory way, regenerative braking thus replaces use of the brake pedal in many situations. At levels 'D2', 'D3' and 'B', the deceleration via regenerative braking is so strong that in this case the brake lights automatically come on. If the battery is fully charged, no regenerative braking occurs.
Charging concept and equipment
Plugs, wall box and charging stations. To recharge the e-up! you simply connect it to the mains. However, there are various ways that this can be done. The simplest option is to plug the mains charging cable supplied with the car into a conventional 230-volt socket. The battery is then charged from the mains at a power level of 2.3 kW. A completely flat battery is recharged in this way within nine hours. As an option Volkswagen offers a wall box for the garage that charges the battery at a power level of 3.6 kW. The (completely flat) battery would thus be fully recharged after six hours. There are also public charging stations that 'refuel' electric cars at a power level of 3.6 kW. As a new car the e-up! can also be prepared for the combined charging system (CCS) using a DC power supply. In this case it can alternatively be 'refuelled' via special CCS charging stations at power levels of up to 40 kW. The battery is then 80 per cent recharged after just 30 minutes.
e-features (exterior and interior)
Volkswagen has developed a range of features and design elements specifically for the e-up!. The electric car can thus be quickly identified as such. The array of bespoke features includes the LED daytime running light's new signature look, aerodynamically developed alloy wheels and an interior in a bright and friendly design. The standard e-up! equipment also includes applications for the maps + more infotainment/navigation system programmed specifically for e-mobility, a radio/CD system, hands-free phone function, four doors, heated windscreen, air conditioning and heated seats.
Ready to drive. The new e-up! is first and foremost a Volkswagen. And that means that like all other versions of this specialist city car the electrically powered version is also fully intuitive to drive, reliable and safe. Everything begins as it always begins. Get in, buckle up, foot on the brake, start the motor. In cars with internal combustion you now hear the engine, while the rev counter's needle also shows that things are happening. In the e-up! nothing like that occurs. Although the electric motor is indeed on, it produces neither noise nor vibrations. And as for the rev counter, there is none. The e-up! signals its readiness to its driver via routines specially designed for the purpose. When the car is started and ready to go, the speedometer needle pegs to the end stop once and then returns to the home position. The illumination of the indicators on the e-up! instrument panel is also switched on, regardless of whether the car's outside lights are on or not. At the same time the battery charge indicator rotates to the current level and the power indicator moves from 'Off' to '0'. Last but not least, the word 'Ready' appears in the panel's central display, backed up by an audible signal. The zero-emission journey can now begin!
Range display. The e-up! comes as standard with the portable maps + more navigation system, complete with Bluetooth hands-free facility. In the e-up! it provides numerous new functions, such as range display ('360° range'). In this mode a map of the surrounding region shows the radius of the area that can be reached with the current level of charge. Here too there are several different functions: 'One-way range' (route in one direction), 'Range including return' (route there and back) and 'Combined' (both range options).
Charging stations via POI. Whenever a destination is entered into the navigation system the driver is informed (via a newly devised range warning system) whether the distance is possible with the current level of battery charge; if not, appropriate stops can be scheduled via the charging stations shown in the points of interest (POIs). A single, one-way route thus becomes a multi-stop route. Drivers are also able to save their own and new charging stations on the system and integrate these into their route planning.
Cleverly managed. Among the other maps + more functions and displays specific to the e-up! are the power flow and regenerative braking display and an e-manager. Using the e-manager, drivers can pre-programme the charge start time and climate control pre-conditioning (switching on the parking heater in winter or parking air conditioning in summer for up to 30 minutes; if not plugged into a charger for up to 10 minutes). The advantage of having the car's interior warmed up or cooled down while the battery is being charged (apart from the added comfort) is that you do not affect the battery's charge level by any initial heating or cooling before starting up. As a result the battery's full range is available to you as you start your journey.
Volkswagen Car-Net e-Remote. Using the 'Car-Net e-Remote' app it is also possible to make the most of these settings and information requests (air conditioning, battery charging, vehicle data and vehicle status info) via a smartphone or the Car-Net website. In detail the app contains the following functions:
- Programming of the departure time – Functions that are scheduled according to the programmed departure time include the park heater/ventilation function; it is started at a specific time that depends on the outdoor temperature, so that the desired interior temperature is reached by the programmed departure time.
- Climate control – Starting and stopping the parking heater/ventilation function, plus display of the outside temperature and the target temperature for the car's interior.
- Charging the battery – Starting and stopping the charging process, charging connection display, charge status, charge progress, charge level, charge time and range.
- Accessing vehicle data – Information display relating to individual journeys (single trips or long term), such as kilometres driven, journey time, electric motor power consumption, power consumption of other consumers such as air conditioning and radio, use of regenerative braking.
- Requesting vehicle status – Doors and boot locked, lights (on/off), charging cable plugged in, battery charge level, range, position where the e-up! was last parked (GPS position on a map).