Since the “Dieselgate” scandal, the Volkswagen group has promised to introduce several new electric vehicles in the coming years. CEO Matthias Müller is said to announce a new strategy this summer that will see the company bring to market 20 new electric vehicles (all-electric or plug-in hybrid) through the group’s 12 brands by the end of the decade.
The company also plans to build on its current limited lineup of electric cars, including the e-Golf, which should see a significant increase in range with the introduction of its next generation.
VW Group small car development leader Dr. Jocham Böhle recently explained via Autoblog:
“The current e-Golf is 190 kilometers [118 miles] of range on paper and about 120 kilometers [75 miles] in the real world. The Golf VIII e-Golf will have 300 kilometers [186 miles] of real-world range – genuinely 300 kilometers – and the current plug-in hybrid has 50 kilometers [31 miles] of electric range and we don’t need more than that … The electrified Golfs will all have 48-volt power. They might not be there right at the start of Golf VIII, but they will be close behind … That system will go through all the MQB cars, with 48 volts. All hybrids and battery electric MQBs will go to 48 volts.”
Although the range increase is significant, the Golf VIII is not expected until 2018 and like Böhle said, the electric versions will likely not be available at launch. If they stick to this timeframe, it would seem that VW will lag behind on the race to market of affordable electric vehicles with ~200 miles of range: Chevy Bolt, Tesla Model 3 and Nissan LEAF 2018.
In the meantime, the company is still incrementally increasing the range of the e-Golf. Last month at CES, VW head of electronic development Volkmar Tanneberger revealed that the company was working on a new ~108 miles battery pack for the next year model.