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Discussion Starter #1
Overall seems quite a decent review, balanced.

The rate of engineering change in the automotive world is such that the image of the hybrid car has enjoyed something of a transformation over the past few years.

However, it is the car driven here, the Audi A3 Sportback e-tron, along with its Volkswagen Golf GTE sister model due later this year, that is arguably set to have the greatest impact yet in terms of public perception. Audi's R&D chief Ulrich Hackenberg even goes so far as to describe the car as "a benchmark for other plug-in hybrids".


http://www.autocar.co.uk/car-review/audi/a3-sportback-e-tron
 

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The more PHEV's the better, they will all want MORE EV :D
 
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Nice - but hybrids and range extenders seem like a token gesture from the big manufacturers when they could spend better resources using Tesla's patents ;)
To claim 37g/km is all very well to meet EU required averages but will real world petrol heads achieve anything like that ?
 

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One of my friends had a test drive in the A3 a couple of days ago and is going for one, he has put down a reservation for when orders start in August. He mentioned maybe posting a short review of the test drive here, I'm encouraging him to do so :)
 
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imho these cars are more of an evolution of the Prius than starting a new chapter in the plugin hybrid development. They are really petrol cars with an auxiliary electric motor whereas the Ampera, Outlanders are EVs with long range onboard generators. I am not that enthusiastic about the direction VAG is taking. But then again, they do pure EVs so they'll be ready when the batteries are.
 

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I think the A3 has similar battery range to the Outlander PHEV does it not... and it has a plug.

All to be encouraged, so we can then encourage people to take it further with the electric side.
 

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Sure, I was just commenting on the R&D chief statement describing the car as "a benchmark for other plug-in hybrids". I just hope not, as it puts the petrol engine at the centre of the performance promise of the car, the electric one being just the "boring and efficient" mode for around town.
 

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Sure, I was just commenting on the R&D chief statement describing the car as "a benchmark for other plug-in hybrids". I just hope not, as it puts the petrol engine at the centre of the performance promise of the car, the electric one being just the "boring and efficient" mode for around town.
Totally agree on that. Every car is some sort of benchmark, best in class, first of its kind... If you believe the manufacturers. ;) :D
 

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VW are to late to the game to be a benchmark and then be less advanced than anyone else. The cars run through a relitively convensional gear box, don't have enough range, no rapid charging and are far more expencive than their ICE equivilants. I don't doubt that they will be good cars, great fun to drive and well made but a game changer they most definatly arn't
 

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I don't doubt that they will be good cars, great fun to drive and well made but a game changer they most definatly arn't
Do you mean that you don't believe the marketing men at VAG? Everything's a benchmark and everything's above average for it's class. ;-)
 

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Do you mean that you don't believe the marketing men at VAG? Everything's a benchmark and everything's above average for it's class. ;-)
I heard about the A3 when I brought my Volt and even test drove one of the Sportback's(ICE) at a pre launch party. I picked the Volt, why?

The Volt is an electric car that can when the electric runs out turn into a ICE and it has a nearly 50 mile electric range.
The A3 is a petrol car with a electric add on that only has a 30 mile range and then drives through a gear box. Its costs far to much and is hard to justify when compared with the small diesel.

The Volt is a 2011 design and is far more advanced than a car that is not even on the market yet.
VW group if they really wanted could have made a car that out performs every car on the market but have instead decided to paddle in the EV water rather than dive in and start swimming.

When I replace the Volt it will be either for a full BEV with >200 mile range or a EREV with a better range and fast charging. The i3 nealy did it then decided that a 2 gallon petrol tank would be enough, the Outlander again has a smaller range but at least it has rapid charging and is priced to compete with the rest of its ICE range.
 

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I wouldn't be too harsh or fast to judge the approach of others. For me, 40 miles plus petrol isn't really much different to 30 miles plus petrol. They do it in different ways, and will appeal to different people, but they're both plug-in cars with benefits. People are finally being given an increasing choice of electric drive or part electric drive vehicles. I'd sooner we more, sooner, but every new plug in car is a welcome addition to the mix in my books.
 

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Do you mean that you don't believe the marketing men at VAG? Everything's a benchmark and everything's above average for it's class. ;-)
You can't doubt the effectiveness of teh VAG marketing men. You only have to read any UK Motoring magazine (or website) to see how much everybody seems to adore everything they do (well, as long as it has a VW or Audi badge, they're not quite as gullible when it comes to SEAT or Skoda).

I've even called them out on it a couple of times - though they assured me there's no big conspiracy or kickbacks, it's just that the Marketing team put out lots of (presumably high quality and convincing) information.

For me? They're all a little bit dull and overpriced.
 
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I wouldn't be too harsh or fast to judge the approach of others. For me, 40 miles plus petrol isn't really much different to 30 miles plus petrol. They do it in different ways, and will appeal to different people, but they're both plug-in cars with benefits. People are finally being given an increasing choice of electric drive or part electric drive vehicles. I'd sooner we more, sooner, but every new plug in car is a welcome addition to the mix in my books.
Its not a question of judging others choice and having driven the ICE Sportback I can understand why you would pick one. My point is that VW can't claim they are making "benchmark" cars when the cars that they are planing to release hardly even match let alone beat the current crop of EV's.

How can the same company that makes the Veyron not be making the best EV in the world, time to find my conspiracy head:confused:
 

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VW are being very clever; produce a car that will do 80% of journeys on electric power, whilst using all their existing tech for the rest of the car. Wait until battery range gets up to 200 miles, then enter the market big time. In the meantime they can sit back and read forums like this, with non-stop complaints about charging infrastructure, which will not affect their PHEVs in the slightest.
Absolutely and so are Volvo, Mitsubishi and indeed the pioneer of the genre, Chrysler. The newcomers might have managed cheaper development by first designing a platform able to accommodate any drive train.
 
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