Published September 27, 2012
By Philippe Crowe
Today, Volkswagen presented in Paris the seventh generation of Europe’s most popular car– and calls it the greenest Golf of all time.
The vehicle’s weight has been reduced by up to 100 kilos, and fuel consumption has been reduced by up to 23 percent. An environmental commendation certified by the TÜV technical inspection authority confirms a significant improvement in the eco-balance over the entire life cycle compared with the predecessor model.
The most fuel-efficient engines offered at launch consume 3.8 liters (61.9 mpg).of diesel (1.6 l TDI) or 4.8 liters (49 mpg) of gas (1.4 l TSI) per 100 km.
Fuel-saving technology such as the Stop/Start system and brake energy recovery now come as standard.
The BlueMotion variant available at a later date will consume only 3.2 liters (73.5 mpg) and emit 85 g/km CO2.
The first generation of the Golf BlueMotion made its debut five years ago at the Geneva Motor Show. At that time, the Golf BlueMotion set new standards for sustainability with a fuel consumption value of 4.5 l/100 km (52.3 mpg). In 2009, Volkswagen showed the second generation Golf BlueMotion, also in Geneva (as a concept car); its fuel consumption had been reduced to 3.8 l/100 km (61.9 mpg).
The third generation presented today reduces this by another 0.6 liters, or 15 percent.
Given its 50-liter (13.2 gallon) fuel tank and 3.2 l/100 km (73.5 mpg) fuel consumption, the new Golf has a theoretical range of 1,562 km (970.5 miles).
Modifications other than weight reductions already mentioned to achieve this result include super low rolling resistance tires with higher air pressure, longer gear ratios (5-speed manual gearbox), the Stop/Start system and battery regeneration mode that are standard in all new Golf cars and specific aerodynamic modifications.
In the area of aerodynamics, the frontal area of the new Golf was reduced by 0.03 square meters and aerodynamic drag reduced by nearly 10 percent. Compared to other Golf models, the aerodynamics of the BlueMotion were also refined by a lowering the chassis by 15 mm, adding a roof spoiler, lateral air guide elements on the rear window, a radiator grille that is closed to the outside, partially closed air inlet screens, optimized cooling airflow, special under-floor panels, optimized brake cooling channels and a C-pillar spoiler. These measures bring the Golf BlueMotion to a cd value of 0.27.
The BlueMotion is powered by a 1.6-liter turbodiesel direct injection engine based on the newly developed EA288 engine series. The 16-valve, four-cylinder engine develops its maximum torque of 250 Nm (184 pound-feet) at a low 1,500 rpm; this torque is available up to an engine speed of 2,750 rpm.
Various measures and technologies such as reduced internal friction, an innovative thermal management system with shortened warm-up phase, exhaust gas recirculation (EGR), cylinder pressure sensor, two-stage oil pump, switching water pump and water-cooled intercooler right in the intake manifold result in successfully reducing fuel consumption and emissions. To reduce emissions values further, Volkswagen has also implemented an oxidation catalytic converter, a diesel particulate filter and a NOx storage catalytic converter.