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Volkswagen showcases future hybrid technology

Volkswagen unveils three new powertrains at the Vienna Motor Symposium that will drive their efforts to push for lower emissions in the near future. They include a 48V mild hybrid system, a new natural gas engine and an evolution of the TDI diesel engine to accommodate hybrid technology.

The first unveil was that of a 48V mild hybrid system, that will first be showcased on the next generation Golf. These systems allow cars to pack more tech that would not be otherwise supported by a 12V system like the electric turbocharger in the Audi SQ7 and the counter-roll system in the Bentley Bentayga. These systems also include a belt-integrated starter generator and a 48V battery that allow the car to coast without the engine being on, and to which energy can be recuperated through braking. The whole system brings efficiency and reduces emissions, while also adding dynamism with a boost function.

The second unveil that was showcased was the new natural gas engine, called the 1.5 TGI Evo. The engine gets direct injectors and a variable geometry turbocharger and is actually based on the 1.5 TSI engine. This engine, however, will only be available in Germany and a few others where there is a market for them.

The third unveil is that of a diesel hybrid. Called the EA288 Evo is a 2-litre 4-cylinder TDI engine that comes with a 12V belt starter generator making it a mild hybrid. Outputs of the engines vary from 134bhp to 201bhp. There’s also the fact that the combustion process has been worked on to improve emissions while weight and frictional losses have been reduced to increase efficiency. These engines will first be used in Audis and will be longitudinally mounted, while VW’s MQB based cars will get them transversely mounted.

While the natural gas engine is unlikely to make it to India, we could possibly see the 48V system and the diesel hybrid in the next generation of Volkswagen cars in India.

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