Volkswagen has confirmed that it will launch a range of 'important models' with plug-in hybrid technology from 2013. In his announcement, VW Group chairman, Dr. Martin Winterkorn said: “Over the mid-term, the plug-in hybrid offers great potential, because it combines the best of two worlds in one vehicle.

“The plug-in hybrid offers precisely what many customers expect: unlimited internal combustion engine performance combined with attractive electric mobility ranges in everyday driving.”

He would not confirm which models in the range would get this technology, but the next-generation Golf is a certain bet, given that a few years ago VW showed a Golf-based plug-in hybrid concept car based on the Golf.

This 'TwinDrive' concept, of which many units have been used in fleet tests, mates an electric motor with a range of 50km to either a TSI turbopetrol or TDI turbodiesel engine.

More recently, Audi also showed off a plug-in hybrid concept called the A5 e-tron quattro - with a rear-mounted electric motor allowing all-wheel drive capability. It's almost certain that Audi will also jump on the plug-in bandwagon with this quattro variation finding its way into various key models.