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The Jetta Hybrid: VW's Next Prius Competitor Unveiled at NAIAS

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As the first ever hybrid vehicle, Toyota Prius will have a worthy competitor later this year as it enters the market: The Volkswagen Jetta Hybrid. Although a family car and smaller in size than what Volkswagen offered to its US buyers so far, the Jetta Hybrid will be a star at the Detroit Motor Show for both its technical capabilities and fancy look.

In terms of what it can do, the car marries a 150hp 1.4-litre TSI turbo petrol engine with a 27hp electric motor, while the DSG dual-clutch gearbox allows for switching between 7 speeds. Being able to travel up to 1.3 miles on electricity, VW Jetta Hybrid is expected to save on fuel up to 30% of a standard consumption whether in town or not. However, the brake energy regeneration of the battery charge could add even more to this saving.

Despite its smaller engine and smaller trunk, the Jetta Hybrid has a few tricks up its sleeve: the engine and the battery together can at times create a 170hp of power ‘boost’ and can accelerate to 60mph from rest in less than nine seconds.

On top of that, the Jetta Hybrid is a pretty sophisticated car too: it offers discretion to its passengers thanks to its thicker glass and a pleasant driving experience on the whole due an acoustic windscreen, a new exhaust, 10% less drag, a rear diffuser… you name it! This car has it all, not to mention the “sailing” effect that you get when driving with the engine off at speed.

So the message this car seems to convey is that you may lose some capacity in your engine, but it will make up for it plenty in its other details!

[via MSN]

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1 COMMENT

  1. Why is VW so dumb?? Don’t use a 1.4 liter OTTO cycle gas engine! I don’t think they are even using an Atkinson cycle OTTO. VW is not very good with gas engines, take the whopping 31MPG hwy new Beetle for example.

    Come on now! It’s real easy. Put a 1.2 liter turbodiesel like you have in the European Polo and mate it to a strong hybrid drivetrain.

    Bam. Now you have more MPG than any Prius and decent acceleration due to the power of the electric motor.
    55-60MPG HWY is within reach.

    I know VW can make that 1.2L Diesel pass emissions in the USA so make it happen and beat the competition! Don’t use the oversized 2L diesel engine that you use in the USA Passat, Jetta, Beetle, use the small 1.2L from Europe!

    I do like that this hybrid will decouple the drivetrain from the wheels when the gas pedal isn’t being pressed. This is in contrast to the Prius, where it has a ‘engine drag simulator’ by lightly regenerative braking whenever you aren’t on the gas pedal. Wastes energy.

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