Volkswagen introduces its 2013 Jetta Hybrid

Andross Moonah - CAP staff
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Volkswagen's Jetta has been in production since 1979 and is currently in its sixth generation. While both gasoline and diesel variants of the Jetta have been offered thus far, the upcoming 2013 model year marks the first time that the Jetta will be sold as a hybrid. In fact, the Jetta Hybrid is just the second gasoline-electric hybrid to be offered from Volkswagen, the first being the Touareg Hybrid sport utility vehicle. The 2013 Jetta Hybrid is due to arrive at the end of 2012.

While most current hybrids use a normally aspirated engine, the Jetta Hybrid makes use of a turbocharged 1.4-litre, 4-cylinder unit that produces 150 horsepower and 184 pound-feet of torque. The engine is paired to a 20kW (27 horsepower) electric motor that draws its power from a 220-volt, 1.1 kWh lithium-ion motive battery located behind the rear bench seat. Shift duty for the 2013 Jetta Hybrid is taken care of by a 7-speed DSG dual-clutch transmission.

Like other hybrids, the Jetta Hybrid comes outfitted with regenerative braking. As the vehicle slows down, the kinetic energy is recovered as electrical power and routed to the motive battery. The electrical energy can then be used to boost powertrain performance or to allow the Jetta Hybrid to be driven in pure electric drive mode.

In fact, the Jetta Hybrid can be driven in electric drive mode at speeds of up to 70 km/h for a distance of up to two kilometres, depending on the vehicle's operating conditions. The Jetta Hybrid also has Volkswagen's "Stop and Go" feature which shuts the gas engine off when the vehicle comes to a stop, reducing tailpipe emissions and saving fuel.

Additionally, the Jetta Hybrid is able to "coast" along under some conditions without using engine power at all, again resulting in better fuel efficiency and less pollution. The coasting feature works when the accelerator pedal is released at speeds of up to 135 km/h. In coast mode the engine is shut down and decoupled from the drivetrain, eliminating both emissions and driveline drag until the engine is needed again.

When it arrives at the end of the year, the 2013 Jetta Hybrid will be the latest addition to a small but growing segment of compact hybrids. Other such vehicles include the Hyundai Elantra Hybrid, the Lexus CT 200h, the Honda Insight and the Honda Civic Hybrid (Toyota's trendsetting Prius hybrid now occupies the midsize segment).
©(Copyright Canadian Auto Press)

Topics: Sedan, Hybrid, Volkswagen, 2013, Jetta Hybrid, Compact,

Organizations: Volkswagen

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