Update: Volkswagen Cross Coupe GTE concept points to Tennessee SUV (LIVE photos added)
Klaus Bischoff, chief designer at Volkswagen says Cross Coupe GTE heralds a new design language developed by VW for US. Future production SUV for North America combines German engineering and design with a vehicle to suit American lifestyle. The new GTE continues to bring the best of a grand tourer using an electric battery. Cross Coupe GTE has zero-emissions range of up to 20 miles, going from 0-60 mph in 6 seconds, and top speed pegged at 130 mph.
Volkswagen Cross Coupe GTE is the brand’s 3rd concept enroute to its Tennessee production version. All three concepts: CrossBlue shown at NAIAS 2013, CrossBlue Coupe shown in Los Angeles in 2013 and Cross Coupe GTE bring forth the wide spectrum of SUV’s that can be produced off Volkswagen’s modular transverse matrix (MQB) architecture. Cross Coupe GTE in Grand Pacific Glacier blue is 190.8 inches long, 79.9 inches wide and 68.3 inches high. Headlights, turn signals and radiator grille merge seamlessly. 2 aluminum bars form the radiator grille’s basic structure.
The lower air inlet is framed by high-gloss black trim, with a polished aluminum insert on the inside. LED dual headlights’ outer modules are for low beam, and inner ones for high beam. Daytime Running Lights (DRL’) signature of 4 LED headlights and 4 LED light wings, 2 in the radiator grille and 2 in the lower air intake will be seen in future production models.
Strong character lines include a sharp front ridge extending over front fenders and below windows to the tailgate, and another at the lower level between wheel arches, incorporating door handles. The A-pillar set a long way back emphasising a raised hood, sloped C-pillar, and short overhangs point to sporty and rugged.
Driver side wheelarch houses a service flap for the lithium-ion battery charging plug. Passenger side houses a fuel filler flap. Volkswagen Cross Coupe GTE runs on 22-inch aluminum-alloy wheels with 10 spokes, shod with 285/40 tyres.
The side character line merges into a polished aluminum trim strip in the rear. Trapezoidal LED taillights are placed above it. Clearly defined horizontal line structures are in use in rear lights, tailgate, and an aluminum panel extending across the bumper. The rear showcases a skidplate with an integrated diffuser.
Cross Coupe GTE combines horizontal orientation of interior architecture (especially control panel), and self-explanatory and intuitive operation of all elements and systems set in gloss black applications, integrated displays and chrome elements.
Under the windshield, an ink Blue Nappa leather border matching exterior paintwork is seen. 2 horizontal polished aluminum air vents are placed outside the instrument panel. A 10.1-inch infotainment touchscreen integrated mid control panel is framed by 2 sets of vertical air vents on both sides. The architecture enhances infotainment and instrument panel appearance to that of a single unit. Functions are controlled via touchscreen. Active Info Display can be individually set by the driver. All infotainment functions and basic vehicle configuration can be manged by driver and front passenger via the 10.1-inch touchscreen through proximity sensors and gesture control.The latter can be used to swipe over a playlist from some distance away to browse and play tunes.
Graphics change based on drive mode, navigation data can be displayed in a 2D or 3D form. The latter is to configure the display individually at 3 or more levels that float above one another in a virtual space. Vehicle location is seen with different information at different levels that can be can be freely moved from top to bottom. Individual settings are made on the top level. 12.3-inch instrumentation screen has a digital display with 1,440 x 540 pixel resolution.
A brushed aluminum horizontal strip runs across below the infotainment screen and instrument cluster. A touchscreen below this strip is for climate control regulation, including heated and cooled seats. 6-speed DSG dual-clutch automatic transmission shift lever remains in central position like a joystick. A quick click activates R, N and D modes. A separate button integrated in the lever switches to P. Rotary driving profile selector for On-road, Off-road, Sport and Snow profiles is housed behind the shift lever and uses lightpipe elements. Black hard keys are for ESC, E-Mode and GTE-Mode,and aluminum for start/stop button.
Seats use bi-color semi-aniline Nappa leather surfaces with perforated leather in the centre. Rear seat bench has a two-third/one-third split fold. Attachments for tablets are fitted in rear seat headrests. Volkswagen Media Control app can be used to access radio, media sources, and navigation via Wi-Fi.
Cross Coupe GTE concept gets power from a 3.6-litre VR6 gas engine, and 2 electric motors. The six-cylinder direct-injection engine (FSI) delivers 276 horsepower and 258 pound-feet of torque. Both electric motors produce 54 hp and 162 lb-ft (front) and 114 hp and 199 lb-ft (rear). Powered by a compact lithium-ion battery housed in the centre tunnel rated at 14.1 kWh. Volkswagen Cross Coupe GTE all-wheel-drive uses a plug-in hybrid system for maximum output of 355 hp and 280 lb-ft. Using an electric driveshaft, manufacturer-estimated fuel economy stands at 70 MPGe. . Cross Coupe GTE onto a top speed of 130 mph and accelerate from 0 to 60 mph in just 6.0 seconds.
Cross Coupe GTE driving profiles on offer are On-road (with Comfort and Eco sub-modes), Off-road, Sport and Snow. Profiles change SUV setup Drive modes include E-Mode; Hybrid; GTE; Off-road; and Battery Hold / Battery Charge.