2015 VOLKSWAGEN e-GOLF: On display during the 106th edition of the Chicago Auto Show (Feb.8-17, 2014) is the e-Golf, Volkswagen’s first fully electric vehicle for the U.S. Not due to go on sale in select states in the fourth quarter of 2014, the new model is available in five-door form only and is immediately recognizable by its unique aluminum-alloy wheels, LED headlights and C-shaped LED daytime running lights. Another striking feature is the colored strip across the radiator grille that consciously aligns the e-Golf with Volkswagen’s Think Blue sustainability campaign. The e-Golf is powered by a 115-horsepower electric motor. From a standing start the EEM-85 synchronous permanent-magnet AC motor develops an impressive 199 pound-feet of torque, allowing the e-Golf to reach 25 mph from rest in 4.2 seconds and to get to 62 mph in approximately 10.4 seconds. Top speed is electronically limited to 87 mph. The high-performance 12,000-rpm motor and the single-speed EQ270 transmission were developed in-house and form a compact unit. The EQ270 also incorporates an integrated differential and an electro-mechanical parking brake. VW was able to integrate the lithium-ion battery in a space-saving frame in the vehicle floor, under the front and rear seats and in the center tunnel. The liquid-cooled lithium-ion battery accounts for 701 pounds of the e-Golf model’s 3090-pound curb weight, composed of a total of 264 individual prismatic cells, which are integrated into 27 modules, with a nominal rating of 323 volts and overall capacity of 24.2 kWh. Note the new instrument layout. The tachometer, which normally lives on the left-hand-side of the instrument cluster, is replaced by the power display—which indicates if the motor is ready, the battery is being charged via regenerative braking, or power is being drawn off—and an indicator of available output.
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