Volkswagen is a hulking automaton of a carmaker at this point. Want proof? They're showing off a seven seat SUV based on the same platform as the Golf. And they're making it a diesel-electric hybrid.
VW killed the Chrysler-built Routan minivan just the other week and now it looks like they're replacing it with this: a plug-in diesel hybrid supersized, seven-seat SUV called the CrossBlue.
We were sure this was going to be an SUV based off the Touareg platform, but we underestimated Volkswagen's determination to build eight trillion vehicles off of the MQB platform. We're going to see that MQB first in the upcoming new Golf. Stretching it out into a sixteen-foot seven seater is just a middle fnger to the rest of the car industry. We can imagine Martin Winterkorn in a boardroom right now, getting a [this inapprorpriate visual has been removed for decency because this is a family website] with eight of their pets while he laughs "HA, VE WILL SHOW ZEM HOW TO MAKE EIN AUTO. VE WILL BUILT AN SUV OUT UFF EIN GOLF, UND ZENN GIVE IT A TRAIN MOTOR."
The CrossBlue Concept is a plug-in hybrid, only instead of having a gasoline engine to support the batteries and two electric motors, there's a TDI diesel engine of indeterminate size (likely a 2.0 liter, but potentially as small as a 1.6). A 190 horsepower diesel powers the front wheels, but when requested there's a 54 horse electric motor to support the front wheels and a second 114 horse electric motor to drive the rear wheels. This would be with 305 horsepower and 516 lb-ft. of torque. Claimed 0-60 is 7.2 seconds. VW is imagining 35 mpg for this thing in hybrid mode. For something that looks like a Grand Cherokee that was hit with a sandblaster, that's pretty interesting.
We doubt that any prospective buyers really care about the diesel PHEV drivetrain. They probably hear that it has seven seats and a VW badge and then just hand over their money. W're more interested in how VW is acting as big and brash as a company of its size should be.