The Up Lite concept car is the harbinger of Volkswagen's new small car platform that should bear fruit in the form of a production Up Lite as early as the second half of 2011. The Up! Lite concept car ontinues the Volkswagen strategy of offering high-tech and high-end quality in all of its vehicle classes, making progress affordable for every car driver. The Up! Lite was designed to be a versatile vehicle that makes trips into the city, commutes to work and naturally long trips as well significantly less expensive and more eco-friendly.
The new concept car, based on Volkswagen’s New Small Family (the Up! models), incorporates a variation on the two-cylinder TDI hybrid powertrain from the L1 concept car unveiled earlier this year at the Frankfurt Motor Show. This small turbo-diesel hybrid possesses a small physical footprint--being much smaller than the VW Golf--and a super small carbon footprint, reaching an astronomical 70 US mpg fuel economy on the EU testing cycle. Volkswagen staged the world premiere of the Up! Lite concept car at the LA Auto Show.
Naturally, on the Up! Lite there is nothing lacking in comfort or safety. ESP is on board, airbags are on board, ample space is on board, highly advanced information and control features are on board, and it is good to know that occupants are enclosed and protected by a highly innovative safety frame of aluminium, steel and carbon fiber.
The Volkswagen concept car has a top speed of 160 km/h (100 mph) and accelerates to 100 km/h in a respectable 12.5 seconds (0-60 mph in 12 seconds). The Volkswagen Up! Light with its extremely efficient engine might be the perfect example to exemplify this. Ultra light (less than 700 kilograms / around 1,500 pounds) it achieves a mileage of 2.44 liters for a 100 km (70 MPG).
The centerpiece of the Up! Lite powertrain is the newly designed 0.8 TDI two-cylinder turbo-diesel engine with a power of 38 kW / 51 PS. Furthermore, the electric motor (10 kW) – designed as a pulse start module (starter, alternator and E-drive) – also reduces the load of the TDI, provides added propulsion (boosting) and works to recover kinetic energy (regenerative braking). During boost phases – e.g. in a quick passing maneuver – the TDI and E-motor combine for a total power of 48 kW / 65 PS. Incidentally, a version of the TDI used in the Up! Lite was also used aboard the L1 concept car that Volkswagen presented in September at the IAA Motor Show in Frankfurt.
2010 Volkswagen Cars Up! Lite Diesel Electric Hybrid Concept CarIn two of its operating phases, the hybrid drive of the Up! Lite was designed to operate without any TDI propulsion at all. First phase: In so-called coast-down, activated by the driver taking his or her foot off the gas pedal (car coasts, TDI engine is shut off). Second phase: Over shorter distances, e.g. in residential areas, the E-motor can power the Up! Lite all by itself. In this case, a lithium-ion battery supplies the energy. Since it is capable of pure electric driving, the configuration is classified as a full hybrid. Shifting work is handled by a 7-speed Direct Shift Gearbox (DSG) like the one used in the new Polo. Moreover, the Volkswagen is equipped with a Stop-Start system.