Vienna - Volkswagen is working frantically to put #dieselgate behind it and focus on cleaner technologies, and this extends way beyond the all-electric I.D. family of compact cars that are expected to debut from 2020 onwards.
VW is also cleaning up its internal combustion act, and it’s certainly not giving up on diesels.
At the recent Vienna Motor Symposium, Volkswagen unveiled plans for a new hybrid-assisted 2-litre diesel engine, as well as a mild hybrid system for petrol versions of the next-generation Golf. On top of that the company also revealed a new 1.5 TSI natural-gas-powered engine.
Golf as a mild hybrid
We’ve already seen 48V mild hybrid systems on higher-end cars such as the Audi A8, but soon this technology will go truly mainstream with such a system set to debut in the next-generation Golf, due in 2019.
The mild hybrid system consists of a 48V belt-integrated starter generator, 48V battery and DC/DC converter.
The starter-generator not only performs the role of an alternator and starter, but can also function as a small electric motor that gives the vehicle an electric boost function. The 48V system also allows a considerable amount of energy to be recuperated (i.e. during braking) and stored.
“With the new 48V technology, Volkswagen aims to make hybrid drives affordable to an extremely large clientèle,” VW said.
“The drive systems drastically reduce consumption and emissions while at the same time offering extra dynamism and comfort with an electric boost function and exceptional drive performance.”
This electrification strategy for internal combustion engines will in time be rolled out to the rest of the VW fleet and as mentioned, diesel engines will evolve accordingly.
New 2.0 TDI diesel motor
The Vienna exhibition also saw VW present a the new EA288 Evo 2.0 TDI engine, which marks the introduction of hybrid assistance for the company’s diesel motors.
The initial ‘mild hybrid’ versions will see the EA288 Evo engine assisted by a 12V starter generator and featuring a lithium ion battery.
VW has not gone into great detail on the new system, but has promised “extremely low emissions” in all driving cycles, with official CO2 figures seeing a 10 g/km reduction over the equivalent current models, while power and torque increase by up to nine percent.
The new 2.0 TDI will be available in a number of variants, producing between 100kW and 150kW. Initially it’ll only be offered in Audi models (A4 and upwards) where it will be longitudinally installed. However, it will eventually be adapted for transverse installation in the group’s smaller MQB-based models, such as the Golf and Tiguan.
“With the EA288 Evo engine family, Volkswagen has developed a TDI range that is technologically at the forefront of the competitive environment. The combustion process of the engines has been redesigned and improved both in terms of efficiency and in terms of raw emission behaviour,” VW said.