All-electric VW e-Golf can now be ordered in the UK for a not-so-small asking price.
An all-electric version of the VW Golf hatchback can now be ordered, with first deliveries of the e-Golf expected to arrive at the end of June. Ordering can be done from one of 24 Volkswagen ‘EV specialist retailers’.
The e-Golf is based on the VW Golf, except in the place of a diesel or petrol engine you get an 85kW electric motor that produces 115PS (113bhp) and 270Nm (199 lb/ft) of torque. This allows it to hit 62mph from standing in 10.4 seconds and a top speed of 87mph. Not exactly spritely, but faster than the 10.5 seconds it takes the 110PS Golf BlueMotion 1.6-litre turbodiesel.
When using a standard UK plug a full recharge takes 13 hours. With a optional 3.66kWh wallbox supply the time drops to eight hours. Superchargers can recharge 80 per cent of the capacity within 35 minutes, assuming you are lucky enough to have access to one.
A 26.5kWh lithium-ion battery that weighs 318kg provides the e-Golf with a 118mile range, which is better than the Mitsubishi iMiev, on par with the Nissan Leaf and less than the 130mile range of the Renault Zoe.
Three driving modes provide differing levels of efficiency. ‘Eco’ reduces the engine power to 90PS and the effectiveness of the energy-sapping air-conditioning. It also modifies the accelerator response to make the power delivery smoother. ‘Eco+’ decreases power 75PS, torque to 175Nm, air-conditing is disabled and a top speed of 56mph is imposed.
Furthermore, there are five modes of regenerative braking: D, D1, D2, D3 and B. With D enabled the car coasts without any energy from slowing down turned into battery power. As you head towards B the level of regenerative braking is increased, with D2, D3 and B activating the brake light when you take your foot off the gas.
The e-Golf, which will only be sold as a 5-door in the UK, separates itself from the standard Golf with full LED headlights (the first production VW to do so), LED daytime running lights in the front bumper, a blue strip on the radiator grille and blue upholstery stitching. Blue ambient interior lighting is an option.
Only one spec level will be offered. Standard equipment includes front and rear parking sensors, alloy wheels unique to the e-Golf, dual-zone climate control and Discover Pro satellite navigation.
The VW e-Golf starts from £25,845 including the £5,000 government electric vehicle grant. For that you could buy a Golf BlueMotion and enjoy 88.3mpg and have £5,000 leftover to spend of fuel. Eco-friendly motoring is still an expensive luxury. Still, there’s always the cheaper, smaller VW e-Up to consider.