Just The Facts: Volkswagen Golf GTE

SEP 7 2014 BY MARK KANE 62

Volkswagen Golf GTE

Volkswagen Golf GTE – charging

Volkswagen Golf GTE

Volkswagen Golf GTE

The Volkswagen Golf GTE is the latest plug-in hybrid car to hit the market.  In Germany, it’s priced at 36,900 Euros ($48,390 USD).

Just like the e-Golf, the GTE (GT Electric) looks almost like the regular internal combustion engine version of the Golf..

In optimistic (NEDC) conditions, Golf GTE should be able to drive 50 km (31 miles) in all-electric mode using its 8.8 kWh lithium-ion battery.

Here are  ten key facts on the Golf GTE presented by Volkswagen:

1. The Golf GTE can cover up to 50 km in all-electric driving; its total range is around 940 km.
2. 1.5 l/100 km and 11.4 kWh/100 km average fuel consumption (NEDC*) equates to CO2 emissions of 35 g/km.
3. With the GTE, the Golf becomes the world’s first car to offer all relevant types of drive systems.
4. The new Golf GTE combines zero-emission driving and long distance cruising in one car
5. The turbocharged direct-injection engine (TSI) develops 110 kW / 150 PS and the electric motor up to 75 kW / 102 PS.
6. The plug-in hybrid has a system power of 150 kW / 204 PS; its maximum torque is 350 Nm.
7. The GTE is the third GT of the model series after the Golf icons GTI and GTD; it has the same sporty DNA.
8. The new Golf GTE has a top speed of 222 km/h and accelerates to 100 km/h in just 7.6 seconds.
9. Standard GTE features include LED headlights and the “Composition Media” radio system with a 6.5-inch display.
10. The Golf GTE will be launched on initial markets at the end of this year. The price in Germany: € 36,900.”

Volkswagen Golf GTE

Volkswagen Golf GTE

Volkswagen Golf GTE

Volkswagen Golf GTE

Volkswagen Golf GTE

Volkswagen Golf GTE


“The new Golf GTE, one of the most innovative compact models of our time, is being launched: it is sporty like the legendary Golf GTI and Golf GTD, yet it can be driven with zero emissions at the press of a button like the all-electric e-Golf. The design, GT equipment features and agile character of the Golf GTE were adapted directly from the Golf GTI and GTD and were transferred to the world of electrified drive concepts. Supplying the propulsive power in the Golf GTE are a 110 kW / 150 PS turbocharged petrol direct-injection engine (1.4 TSI) and an electric motor with a power output of 75 kW / 102 PS. These two power sources combine to form a drive unit that offers both sustainability and dynamic performance in tandem with a 6-speed dual clutch gearbox (DSG) that was specially developed for hybrid models. System power: 150 kW / 204 PS. Essentially, two drive systems are at the heart of the new GTE: one that transforms it into a dynamic GTI/GTD and another that transforms it into a quiet zero-emission car like the e-Golf.”

Volkswagen Golf GTE

Volkswagen Golf GTE

Volkswagen Golf GTE - drivetrain

Volkswagen Golf GTE – drivetrain

Volkswagen Golf GTE - drivetrain

Volkswagen Golf GTE – drivetrain

Volkswagen Golf GTE - electric motor

Volkswagen Golf GTE – electric motor

Volkswagen Golf GTE

Volkswagen Golf GTE

Volkswagen Golf GTE

Volkswagen Golf GTE

All-electric mode

“Exceptionally efficient. The Golf GTE has an average fuel consumption of 1.5 l/100 km petrol (equates to 35 g/km CO2) and 11.4 kWh/100 km electricity (NEDC rating for hybrid vehicles). The maximum all-electric driving range is 50 km, and the total range is around 940 km.

E-mode – zero emissions at the push of a button. Those who primarily drive short trips can theoretically drive all the time in “E-mode” (activated by pushbutton) and thereby with zero emissions. In the evening, the driver can simply charge the high-voltage battery from a conventional domestic mains socket (three hours and 45 minutes until 100 per cent charge capacity is reached). If the battery is “refuelled” from a wall box (for garage or carport) or a public charging station, it takes just 2 hours and 15 minutes to reach a 100 per cent charge. Electrifying: even on longer trips, thanks to the intelligent control features of the Golf GTE, the driver can ensure that enough electricity is reserved for the end of the trip to drive exclusively with the zero emission electric motor – e.g. in an urban area destination. So the Golf GTE is a dynamic yet extremely fuel-efficient all-round car for long trips, and it can also be used as a zero emission vehicle.”

Volkswagen Golf GTE - battery pack

Volkswagen Golf GTE – battery pack

Volkswagen Golf GTE

Volkswagen Golf GTE


 “GTE mode – sporty car at the push of a button. The car’s sustainable properties contrast with its high level of driving performance, which lives up to the GT model designation (Gran Turismo). When the full power of the TSI is used in GTE mode (button activated), the Golf GTE sprints to 60 km/h in just 4.9 seconds and to 100 km/h in 7.6 seconds; and it can continue to accelerate up to 222 km/h. However, “Vmax” is of secondary importance; what is of special interest is the way in which the petrol engine and electric motor combine to produce such impressive propulsive force in the Golf GTE thanks to a maximum torque of 350 Nm. When the drive source is just the electric motor, the Golf GTE has a top speed of 130 km/h.”

Volkswagen Golf GTE

Volkswagen Golf GTE

Equipment features and interior

“GTE equipment features. The new Golf GTE is comprehensively equipped and very sporty. Standard exterior features include LED headlights and LED daytime running lights (the latter with a C-shaped light signature in the independently styled bumper), dark red LED rear lights and 16-inch alloy wheels (optional wheels up to 18-inch). The red stripe on the radiator grille and headlights that is typical of the Golf GTI is designed in blue on the Golf GTE. Standard interior details include GTI style sport seats (GTE: blue checked design on seat and backrest surfaces), multifunction sport steering wheel, headliner and side trim in black, high-end Composition Media infotainment system with 6.5-inch display, blue ambient lighting, mobile online services, “GTE mode” with e-boost and electronic engine sound, stainless steel pedal caps and contrasting blue stitching on the seats, steering wheel and gear knob. In Germany, the Golf GTE will cost € 36,900 with this extensive range of standard features.”

“Unique range of drive systems. Volkswagen is the world’s first carmaker to offer all currently relevant types of drive systems in a single model series. That is because when the Golf GTE makes its debut, Golf buyers will be able to choose from petrol, diesel, natural gas, electric and plug-in hybrid drive systems. When it comes to hybrid drives, the Golf GTE is now the third hybrid model in the Volkswagen line-up after the Touareg Hybrid and Jetta Hybrid. The fourth hybrid will be the Passat (saloon and estate), in which Volkswagen will be implementing a plug-in hybrid powertrain which is similar to that in the Golf GTE.”

Volkswagen Golf GTE

Volkswagen Golf GTE – interior

Volkswagen Golf GTE

Volkswagen Golf GTE – interior

Volkswagen Golf GTE

Volkswagen Golf GTE – interior

Volkswagen Golf GTE

Volkswagen Golf GTE – interior


Volkswagen Golf GTE

Volkswagen Golf GTE – interior

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62 Comments on "Just The Facts: Volkswagen Golf GTE"

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“3. With the GTE, the Golf becomes the world’s first car to offer all relevant types of drive systems.”

That is that supposed to mean?

I think they mean, ICE, diesel, PHEV, all-electric, etc

Exactly, and the only one left to mention is the gas version (natural gas or biogas).

Yes they do a LP/N/gas in the UK/EU, nice to see the report in metric which 95% of the world use.

VW are building an NG version but not bothering with an LPG one which is not used in most places on the continent.

They can turn one out easily enough if they reckon the demand is there.

It is easy to get post production conversions here in the UK, for a couple of thousand pounds or so to most cars, and should be easier in the Golf as the space is already allowed for.

Maybe this EV transition is a good opportunity to move to using more metric units. Any thoughts?

Honda could have built something like this, if they weren’t QUITTERS.

You mean something like the Honda Accord PHEV?

You mean the compliance car that don’t even sell 50 units per month globally (and 0 in Hondas home country) and costs twice as much as a the petrol version?


Many thanks for a very informative and comprehensive article, Mark.

Perhaps when you get an opportunity you guys can quiz VW on the 0-60 using electric drive, as that is a good figure to have as it indicates usability in the City as a ZEV.

I suspect it is similar to the E-Golf, but it would be nice to know and I have not managed to Google it up.

The GTE’s motor has slightly less power than the eGolf’s motor (75kW vs 85kW), so I suspect it would be slower.

But I don’t think that’s very meaningful, as the occasional use of max acceleration from the gas engine would use a pretty negligible amount of gas overall.

‘Ang on! Sound insulation in the battery case? Well, it’s a nice way of describing unnecessary weight.

Yeah, that threw for a loop . . . as if batteries are noisy?!?! Perhaps there is a noisy fan in there for thermal management?

Its the pump for the liquid cooling, presumably which needs the soundproofing: ‘The e-Golf will still have a thermal management system of sorts, integrated with the Battery Management System. The controller monitors each cell individually and regulates how much energy each cell produces to moderate temperature rise. Allegedly, waste heat will be redirected into the vehicle’s chassis so as to avoid unacceptable temperature increase in the battery. One rather unfortunate trade-off that comes with air-cooled systems is that vehicle performance must be restrained slightly because demanding high current from the battery raises the temperature quickly. That is one reason why the VW GTE, the plug-in hybrid version of the high-performance GTI, will use liquid cooling for its battery. The e-Golf is more optimized for efficiency than performance, so liquid cooling isn’t absolutely necessary.’ http://www.torquenews.com/2250/vw-e-golf-leaf-will-have-air-cooled-battery Incidentally we were discussing how fast the GTW would be 0-60 in electric mode, and it was suggested that 75kw instead of the 85kw of the E-Golf might mean it is slower. Maybe that is the case, but just possibly not, and they don’t have to worry about keeping the battery cool to the same extent and electric motors are often quite happy to exceed their… Read more »

I traded in my lemon 118TSI Golf for a LEAF last year and never looked back. Whenever I read articles about all the clever engineering behind new VW cars I only think about all the things which could go wrong with it.

I hope the new crop of Volkswagen EVs don’t have Volkswagen’s notorious unreliability.

And this car had BETTER be damn reliable. Look at that engine area . . . it is completely packed full. I can’t imagine being able to do much work on these without having to remove large components.

Reliability is where VW have taken their eye off the ball.

In the reliability index here in the UK they are 24th out of 39 manufacturers:

Audi are even worse at 34th!

Incidentally a VW group we have here in Europe and you don’t in the US, Skoda, is a very respectable 9th.

They specialise in the no-frills end of the market.

Perhaps it is pushing the performance envelope with fancy technology which is causing them the problems.

I really think this is why they are delaying this car (And the Audi A3 etron) in the USA. The want to get it stabilized before hitting the US market. Just like Mitz is doing with their Outlander PHEV.

Is that a real transmission or a CVT?

Its VW’s dual clutch box, not a CVT.

A lot of people don’t like them though.

I’m not interested in reading about cars which are not going to be sold in the States. What’s the point?

I wonder if any other countries use English?
Lets think hard about that one…….

Not countries – people, who may even happen to live in countries where English is not an official language.

Like Poland for example. Thanx for the article, as the insideevs is my primary source for news in the global EV market.


Australia represent!

Yep, I understand there are a considerable number of English speakers in Australia.

They come over here to study it as a second language whilst they do bar work….. 😉

Thankfully the world is larger than the US. 🙂 The next time you can choose to not open and read an article about a non-US sold EV.

There are plenty of articles here on them ranging from BYD to Renault to the Golf GTE etc.
Leave them unread, and let them be for us who appreciate them. 🙂

I assume it WILL be sold here eventually. I’m guessing that they are just delaying it for a year or two so they can work out the bugs. There are bound to be some unforeseen issues with this car with all those different technologies packed together in a small area.

Batteries are too expensive. Let’s make the battery 65% smaller and then increase the price.

Nearly 50 grands for a compact VW? I guess that would be hard to digest like the $50K RAV4 when it initially came out. At least the RAV4 was *pure* electric and justified its cost due to its large battery pack.

Doesn’t the Leaf look more and more attractive — if it weren’t so ugly (yep, my personal opinion).

Hmm, maybe I should compare the GTE to the e-Golf. But that was my first reaction… 😉

Those are German prices which include 20% VAT, which if you live in the US you don’t have to pay – unless you are feeling really, really generous, of course! 🙂

Rather like $35k. And the Golf GTE is priced near the GTD (diesel) and GTI (petrol) so there will be quite a few of those buyers who will see the GTE as a better option.

and there will be federal and/or state tax incentives that will lower the price.

I’m not crazy about VW’s choice of fuel tank placement. I’d much rather have the fuel tank under the rear seat in front of the rear wheels than behind the rear wheels and up against the rear bumper.

I thought the new VW’s are on a modular platform. Do the ICE VW Golf’s also have the fuel tank between the rear bumper and rear wheels? That would be an odd choice for crash worthiness.

Dr. Kenneth Noisewater

Golf GTE: the best plugin hybrid vehicle of 2009!

If you’re not going to one-up the competition, given years of exposure, then you’re just a lazy f–k who deserves to fail.

The Golf GTE is as good or better than other PHEV’s. But that is not so much different than 2009 (or rather 2011-2013 since most PHEV’s were not avaliable in 2009 😉 )

The big difference? This one is here to sell in numbers.

Dr. Kenneth Noisewater

VW isn’t moving the chain, they’re just backfilling in a product segment. Barely newsworthy, IMO.

Gee whiz, a compact PHEV with a too-small battery, too-weak electric motor, etc., nothing terribly new compared to a C-Max, let alone the newer Accord PHEV. Whoop-de-sh*t.

VW has way more engineering and financial resources than BMW, but BMW at least moved the chain in CFRP and modularization technologies, even if their batteries are still too expensive and low-density, and they cheaped out on the REx rather than giving it an Atkinson VVT cam with DI.

Kinda embarrassing when the best you can do is mid-pack, it’s as if they don’t give a crap.

What they will be moving are the sales. It’s fun when companies come with new gadgets and technologies and such.
But that is rarely showing in the mass market.

The Accord PHEV is selling less than 50 units per month globally.

The VW group will soon be the sales leader in the global EV market.

You see the difference? The news worthy is not about the new technology, it’s about the implementation into the mass market and moving the sales number for the whole EV market to new heights.

Honda, do they sell any hybrid with any kind of commitment?

They use the hybrid models to cross sell you a regular car.

“Here to sell in numbers”? They don’t even offer it in the USA. Clearly it is not going to sell in big number.

The US is 15-20% of global sales. It’s a big market but selling in numbers is no problem without having that market.

Especially when it comes to EV’s which has such low numbers to begin with.

I don’t know about the rest of the car, but that instrument cluster is definitely circa 2009!

Maybe, but that tartan seat fabric is definitely circa 1975….

Plaid patterns are a long tradition in the Golf GTI. Sadly they don’t do the golf ball on the shifter/gear selector anymore though. 😉

Looks good. Finally a PHEV that doesn’t compromise usability (passenger and/or trunk space), is price-competitive even without subsidies, and doesn’t have some ugly “look I’m green” design. This should help plugins gain market acceptance especially in Europe (where it competes with efficient Diesel cars).

Can anyone explain the logic in NOT bringing this car to the USA? I understand them not bringing the E-Up! as it is very small (although I do still wish they’d bring it over), but I cannot understand why they would not bring this over?

Perhaps they want to wait a year or two and get the bugs out before bringing it over?

You are getting the Audi A3 Etron to cover the PHEV segment, whilst VW covers BEV.

I would guess it is partly because the Audi will have bigger margins, and partly to avoid the costs of homogulating and servicing two similar models for what is still a small market segment.

Well, that car doesn’t show up for at least another year and will have a price of over $40K . . . and with less electric range than the Volt.

I think a lot of people are going to start realizing why GM’s Volt was such an important car even though it hasn’t been a big seller yet. GM certainly now has much more hands-on experience and skill with PHEVs than any other auto-maker and will be delivering a full-on second generation product around the same time VW/Audi ships their first generation attempt.

Its the same electric range as the Golf GTE, in fact it is exactly the same drivetrain.

$40k is a good guess.

Its supposed to be spring next year for the US release.

1.5 L/100km = 156.8 MPG
11.4 kWh/100km = 18.3 kwh/100 miles
Or 183 Wh/mile
Just for reference a LEAF is rated at 300 Wh/mile on the EPA system. This rating for the GTE is REALLY optimistic. I would expect it to actually get around 20 miles all electric rather than the 31 they are telling us.

Also, from the picture of the battery, it says it is a 8.6 kWh battery, not 8.8 kWh. Is a little faster acceleration and a decent trunk really worth $50K?

I’m not sure why you are including VAT in the $50k sales price you talk about, as it has already been confirmed in this thread that that is included.

I don’t really know how much the VAT will make a difference though. A comparible Golf in Germany according to volkswagon.de starts around 19,000 Euros which is around $24,500 for the 2.0 Diesel. Which is around the price of one of those here. So I’m thinking, the GTE will probably be around the same price here. I would be surprised to see it under $40,000.

Well, looking at it more. The e-Golf in Germany is priced at about 35,000 euros which is actually the price in dollars in the US, $35,000. If we go by that metric, then the GTE would sell here for about $37,000. So maybe you are right about that. Who knows until they actually bring it over here. If they ever do.

I think the small battery is an issue. I’d much rather go for the Volt. Or at least a C-Max Energi.

VW have designed these so that it should be trivial when they have better batteries available to fit a more energy dense pack in the same space.

That should give that car, perhaps sold as a higher range option or a US model as average commutes there are longer, around the same EV range as the present Volt.

I would expect that by around 2017

Doesn’t the C-Max energi have a smaller battery?

Yes, but it is available now and it costs less.

With this car the Prius plug-in is now worse than a Golf, imagine! Toyota has lost its initial advance in car electrification. It lost it already to the Volt, then the i3, but now losing it to a Golf is really the drop too much.