2011 Volkswagen Sharan – Click above for high-res image gallery

Volkswagen has just launched the third generation of its popular Sharan minivan in Europe, and the new version is the most fuel efficient people mover in its class. The new Sharan has adopted VW's new styling language with a horizontal grille and headlamps that look similar to those found on the Golf, Jetta and Polo.

Under the hood, the Sharan has an all four cylinder lineup with two gas and two diesel engines, all direct injected and turbocharged. The diesels and the 150-hp gas engine all come automatic start-stop systems and brake energy regeneration as standard issue. The 140-hp TDI with a six-speed manual gearbox gets a combined EU rating of 42.8 miles per gallon (U.S.), and even the more powerful 200-hp TSI gas engine is rated at a reasonable 27.4 mpg combined.

At 191 inches long, the Sharan is a bit smaller than most U.S. market minivans, almost exactly matching the Kia Sedona. Volkswagen has not indicated any plans to offer the Sharan here, but with its goal of 800,000 annual sales looming, nothing can be ruled out. Read more about the new Sharan in the press release after the break.

[Source: Volkswagen]


To the Point: New Sharan is World's Best in its Class with 5.5 l/100 km Fuel Economy
EasyFold seat concept offers maximum versatility and convenience

Volkswagen MPV is now 22 centimetres longer, but a full 30 kilograms lighter
Wolfsburg / Munich, 01 July 2010 - Volkswagen is building a new MPV. An MPV that at 4.85 metres is precisely 22 centimetres longer than the previous model. With up to 7 seats. And up to 2,430 litres cargo capacity. With up to 9 airbags and 33 storage options. With the most solid body in its class. With sliding doors. With countless small detailed solutions that make everyday driving better. With integrated child seats and an enormous panoramic sunroof. With a Start-Stop system and battery regeneration. This is an MPV which – in the most popular engine version in Europe that still packs 140 PS – only consumes 5.5 l/100 km fuel (equivalent to 143 g/km CO2). This value is a new world best in its class. It is the new Sharan.

It all begins in high summer. After more than 600,000 of the first two generations of Sharan have been built, the successor model is taking over. Its four direct injection TSI petrol and TDI diesel engines are now up to 21 percent more fuel-efficient than comparable engines of the outgoing model. The two TSIs output 110 kW / 150 PS and 147 kW / 200 PS, while the TDIs develop 103 kW / 140 PS and 125 kW / 170 PS. Each of these Euro-5 engines is also available with a 6-speed dual clutch gearbox (DSG); it is even standard equipment on the 200 PS TSI.

* The 2010 model year Sharan is a completely redesigned vehicle. Clever: The optionally electrically powered sliding doors have a pinch protection function that ensures safety on entry and exit. Innovations run throughout the body area like a common thread. The Sharan sets the new benchmark in the segment for the static and dynamic torsional rigidity of its body, for example. Despite this, weight was trimmed down. Consider the Sharan 1.4 TSI BlueMotion Technology. It was made a full 30 kilograms lighter than the comparable version of the previous model.

* Responsible for the new Sharan's visual styling are Walter de Silva (Head of Design for the Volkswagen Group) and Klaus Bischoff (Head of Design for the Volkswagen Brand). They designed the vehicle based on the new Volkswagen 'design-DNA' matrix. As a result, the vehicle's body styling - both appealing and functional - is epitomised by clear, horizontal lines. It is fresh, yet certainly not dictated by any transient fashion. The aim of the design is rather to create an extremely energetic look in the body with a minimum of lines. The new generation Sharan was also designed to be one of the most aerodynamic MPVs on the market. Its Cw value: 0.299! This represents a 5 percent improvement over the already very good previous model.

* The new Sharan will be offered on all markets in the three equipment versions Trendline (base vehicle), Comfortline (mid-level) and Highline (most exclusive version) as well as in 9 different body colours. In its normal configuration, the MPV has 5 seats (2:3). Thanks to the new EasyFold seating concept, the individual seats of the second row no longer need to be removed to utilise the vehicle's maximum cargo space, rather they are stowed in the vehicle floor with a very easy-to-use folding mechanism. Like the front seats, the rear seats also adjust longitudinally and can be reclined by up to 20 degrees.

* In addition, 6-seat and 7-seat packs are available. As a 6-seater, the Sharan's second seating row is equipped with two seats that have cushioned armrests; there are also two individual seats in the third row (2:2:2). There is no middle seat in the second row, but the two remaining seats there can be moved toward the middle, offering even better comfort. The 6-seater is ideal for business customers. If the customer chooses the 7-seater, just like on the 5-seater, the second row has three individual seats; naturally, there are two individual seats in the third row in this case as well (2:3:2). Regardless of which equipment line is ordered, the 6 and 7-seat Sharan versions have standard 3-zone climate control (Climatronic), the EasyEntry feature for easy access (to the third row of seats) and acoustic and visual warning signals if the rear seatbelts are unbuckled.

* Driving properties of the Volkswagen MPV exhibit the same high levels of performance and comfort as the excellent Passat. Convenience and safety are enhanced by an electronic parking brake and the new Park Assist system (automatic steering when parking in even smaller parking spaces, and on cobbles, between trees or on street curves – and now offers automatic parking perpendicular to the driving direction). Even the base version Sharan comes with features such as semi-automatic climate control (Climatic), radio-CD system (RCD 210), mobility tyres (self-sealing in case of puncture) and an uncompromising safety pack that includes 7 airbags and ESP. Highly advanced entertainment systems and a 3-zone climate control system (Climatronic) - standard on the 6 and 7-seat versions - guarantee ideal travel conditions at any time of year. The third generation Sharan is also the only MPV in its class to be available with all-wheel drive. A Volkswagen for a life in motion. It can already be configured via the Internet for initial country launches. www.volkswagen.com shows you the way.

Facts Overview

Key Aspects in Alphabetical Order

Assistance and vehicle dynamic systems: DCC adaptive chassis control, Park Assist, rear-view camera Rear Assist, Park Pilot with visual display

Automatic gearbox: 6-speed DSG

Character: All-round talent for family, recreation, business

Colours: Uni (standard): "Urano Grey", "Candy White". Metallic (optional): "Toffee Brown", "Silver Leaf", "Reflex Silver", "Pantheon Grey", "Indium Grey", "Night Blue". Pearl Effect (optional): "Deep Black".

Debut of generation I: 1995

Debut of generation II facelift: 2003

Debut of generation II: 2000

Debut of generation III: 2010

Dimensions: 4.85 metres long, 1.9 metres wide, 1.72 metres tall, 2.92 metre wheelbase

Drive type: Standard front-wheel drive

Engines – diesel: launching with 103 kW / 140 PS (TDI) and 125 kW / 170 PS (TDI)

Engines – petrol: launching with 110 kW / 150 PS (TSI) and 147 kW / 200 PS (TSI)

Engines specifications: All petrol engines are charged TSI engines; all diesels are new common rail TDI engines; all engines fulfil the Euro-5 emissions standard; a Start-Stop system and battery regeneration are standard with engines up to 125 kW / 170 PS; 200 PS version has 6-speed DSG

Equipment lines: Trendline, Comfortline, Highline

Fuel consumption range: 5.5 l/100 km to 8.6 l/100 km

Infotainment: Radio-CD systems: RCD 210, RCD 310, RCD 510. Radio-Navigation systems: RNS 315 and RNS 510. Peripherals: MEDIA-IN interface, AUX-IN port, Dynaudio sound system, hands-free telephone system

Luggage space, 5-seater: 885 litres up to 2,430 litres. Total length extending to front seats: 2.1 metres

Market launch in Germany: End of August 2010

Production site: Palmela, Portugal

Production total so far (all generations): 607,700

Running gear: MacPherson-type front suspension, four-link rear suspension, standard ESP, DCC adaptive chassis control (optional)

Standard features: With ESP, 7 airbags including knee airbag, sliding doors, climate control system, electro-mechanical power steering, electric windows front and rear, multifunction display, central locking, height-adjustable driver's seat, RCD 210 audio system

Standard gearbox: 6-speed manual gearbox

Styling: Walter de Silva (Group), Klaus Bischoff (Brand)

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