Volkswagen unveiled the new Jetta Hybrid at the Detroit Motor Show Today. And first things first, it’ll do 45 mpg, probably.
We say probably because that’s what VW reckons it can do. We have to wait for the official EPA certification to be sure of that. But that’s what you should be getting from a hybrid system consisting of a 1.4-litre TSI 150 PS petrol engine and a 20 kW zero-emissions electric motor.
This hybrid is of course on of them clever ones, and can engage or disengage either of the motors depending on the driving condition.
When running solely on electricity, the Jetta can reach speeds of up to 70 kmh (44 mph) and over a distance of two kilometres (1.3 miles). When you put your foot down, both units are at full alert to provide 170 PS for maximum acceleration. Of course, when you brake, the regenerative system comes to play recharging the batteries with the wasted energy of braking.
Power is directed to the front wheels via a seven-speed dual clutch DSG gearbox, which is efficient and lightweight, at 74 kg. Despite this, the Jetta Hybrid is a 100 kg heavier than the normal models.
Visually, you can tell the Jetta apart from non-hybrid ones with its new front spoiler, a rear diffuser and a rear spoiler that help to improve the car’s Cd value by 10 per cent. There are also new headlights with LED running lights, LED rear lights and unique 15-inch alloy wheels with low rolling resistance tyres.
Standard equipment on the US-spec SE model – going on sale later in 2012 – includes: a 2Zone climate control system that works without the TSI engine running, a ‘Premium 8’ sound system, Bluetooth phone integration, MDI interface for iPod connectivity and a leather-wrapped multifunction steering wheel. Moving up to SEL1 specification adds 16-inch alloy wheels, a glass sunroof, RNS 315 satellite navigation, electric driver’s seat adjustment, heated front seats and keyless entry. The top SEL2 specification adds to this further, with 17-inch wheels, fog lights, bi-xenon headlights with cornering function, a reversing camera and a 400-Watt Fender sound system.