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Discussion Starter #1
Hello folks,
we're leaning towards getting a new g4h company car. Not had a company car before but the tax incentives are... incentivising!
We currently own an Audi A4 estate and I enjoy it's relatively responsive acceleration and I tend to drive quickly.
I had a first test drive in a GX4h and was extremely disappointing by the lack of acceleration. 0-20 is great, but from 30-50 was very sluggish.
I took one out for a second test drive and pushed it much more. This time, it wasn't as bad. Not as responsive as I'd like, but it got there in the end. I know it's a different car from what I'm used to and I need to adjust my expectations.

But with regard to acceleration, is there a particular technique for driving the electric/petrol combination which gets you better acceleration when you need it?

Thanks in advance.
 

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I had a first test drive in a GX4h and was extremely disappointing by the lack of acceleration.
Its an big brick like vehicle, you possibly need to manage your expectations a little. I have never felt its slow or left me wanting for power when I need it, but I know it isn't a brisk car either.
 

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Outlander PHEV App - EvBatMon.
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is there a particular technique for driving the electric/petrol combination which gets you better acceleration when you need it?
If you press the "Charge" button prior to taking off, the ICE will be running so you can tap into an extra 60kW (the battery can only provide 60kW in total, however there are 2 x 60kW motors). This won't help "off the line" as the battery is sufficient (and explains why you are happy with the initial 0-20km launch). However it will help in the 20-60km speed range if the ICE would otherwise have started from cold. The same technique is useful just prior to overtaking.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Put your foot flat to the floor?

Or get a GTE if you want a performance hybrid.
I put my foot to the floor and for what seemed like quite a while, there was no acceleration. Which is what disappointed me.
Hadn't considered a VW. Having a look, thanks.
you possibly need to manage your expectations a little
Is what I'm thinking, but also wondering whether I just wasn't driving it 'right'.
If you press the "Charge" button prior to taking off, the ICE will be running so you can tap into an extra 60kW (the battery can only provide 60kW in total, however there are 2 x 60kW motors). This won't help "off the line" as the battery is sufficient (and explains why you are happy with the initial 0-20km launch). However it will help in the 20-60km speed range if the ICE would otherwise have started from cold. The same technique is useful just prior to overtaking.
I think is the answer I'm looking for, thanks. I'll have to try it on another test drive.
 

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Also maybe worth trying the KIA Optima PHEV although it is saloon only ATM, it certainly goes fine if you accelerate hard and will return a realistic 30 miles on EV power and 40-50mpg if driven as a Hybrid.
 

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Was this the very latest 2017 Outlander PHEV model? This now has the new EV Priority button so if you have enough energy it will now not use the ICE.
 

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You just don't get the EV grin with MOST hybrids. ICEs have to 'spin up' (to put it crudely) whereas EVs have instant torque. I tried the Outlander and was very disappointed by the acceleration. What's worse, is it forces the use of petrol. That's why I went for the Ampera, which is all electric drive with no nasty gearbox.

As @Jon72 says, it sounds like the GTE is the best bet for you, but you WILL be using petrol if you want max acceleration.
 

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In 2015, I went from a Subaru WRX to an Outlander 4h, that is a big difference in acceleration, at any speed.

You would have had a test drive in a "new" shape, which is a second or two quicker 0 to 30, but the same 0 to 60 as my "old shape" car.

It's a (nearly) 2 ton beast, so there is no surprise that acceleration away from the lights is not a feature that comes up in the salesman's speech.

When I was looking, 2 years ago, there wasn't as much choice as now. I liked the idea of the Audi e-tron or Golf GTe, but I physically didn't fit in the audi (I am too tall and too fat) and the VW dealer couldn't be bothered to let me sit in a GTe, let alone have a test drive.

In the real world, because the Outlander doesn't have a gearbox, you can just put your foot down and let it go, it will accelerate away smoothly, all the way up to ... it's maximum speed (not that I've ever been above 70 in the UK, cough)

The electronics appear to do things differently depending on the SOC of the battery, so if there is more than a certain percentage (30%?) in the battery, it lets you push it harder.

Last summer I was on the North Circular (near Brent Cross) when I was over taken by a (2016 shape) PHEV who was obviously in a hurry as he weaved it through the 3 lanes of traffic (all moving at 30 to 50mph) and disappeared into the distance.

The Outlander battery/electronics doesn't produce enough power to do a quick lunch by itself, which is why you get the annoying delay while the petrol generator kicks in after half a second. (unless you have the ability to tweak the firmware, like the Polish person with the youtube videos for the phevbox)
So if you are sitting at the lights and have a couple of seconds notice that you need to go a bit quicker, you can push the "charge" button to kick the petrol generator into life early, so it is already producing the extra electric, and you get a noticeably quicker launch.

basically, it's a big beast, it's not a sports car, getting an official emissions figure under the magic 50g/CO2 was obviously high up on the design spec, but once you have become accustomed to it, if you want to go a bit quicker you will soon learn the tricks.
I have surprised a few Porches at the traffic lights.
After much procrastination, one of my friends bought a used 3h a couple of months ago, and is pleasantly surprised with how little petrol he puts in, and how quick he can get it around the Watford one way system in the morning rush.
Another is considering buying one for his other half, as he was surprised that I was able to leave him behind going up the dual carriageway out of Hemel when he was following in his Jaguar XKR

as far as I can see, there is no perfect vehicle, they all have some compromise.
which 2 of the 3 magic 3 Ps will you go for? Price, Performance, Practical
 

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Performance and PHEV are not two words you should put together, it will go but the CVT screams. If your taking the car as a company car for BIK reasons alone - I dont blame you. But you need to embrace you do need to change your driving style accordingly I know I did when I first had one. Perhaps its age but I slowed right down, anticipated traffic more and generally chilled out. If I need to get somewhere I leave earlier and enjoy the drive. I think more people should try it. I recently noted a BMW forcing me out the way as they do, flying past me well over the speed limit, 20 miles later it was 3 cars in front of me sitting in a traffic jam!! I cheerfully gave me the thumbs up LOL
 
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I agree with Neal, once you get one, and you adapt to the slower, more graceful driving style, you occasionally wish it would go quicker, but you will find that you no longer care when you are stuck in traffic, and creeping along in electric mode, because the thought that you now only put petrol in once or twice a month, instead of once or twice a week, and that you are paying bugger all BIK makes up for the lack of performance (most of the time)

also, you care less about some things, like when people get the technology wrong, because it doesn't have a CVT gearbox like a Prius.
it has an electric motor for the front wheels and another for the rear wheels
there is no traditional gearbox, but there is a "5th gear" and a clutch
so when you are cruising on the motorway (or anywhere more than 45mph ish) it (the computer) can do something with the clutch and let the petrol engine drive the front wheels directly.
So flat bit of motorway, it drives the wheels and tops up the battery for 5 miles ish, then petrol engine off, run on battery for 5 miles, repeat until ....
Uphill bit (5 people, luggage and caravan), the petrol engine and electric motors drive it


and even as the driver, you don't know this, or care, unless you find the screen on the display that shows all the wizzy bits so you can show the children
 

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I'm not crazy, the attack has begun.
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It, like the GTE, isn't an electric car.

It is an electrically assisted ICE.

When you go for acceleration, unless the ICE is running, you get an 'unassisted' low power electric drive train.

If you want keen acceleration you have to go for either a 'proper' EV or a 'proper' ICE, in which the power source is always ready to deliver 100% at a millisecond's notice.
 

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Sort of correct our @donald but what ICE can deliver 100% power in a second (nevermind a millisecond)?
 

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Thank you. We're looking at estates and up for the space and the size of our children. Catching me up at 6'2
If its going to be your main family car the GTE might not be the one to go for. We can fit five of us in the GTE but its a bit of a squeeze so for family days out we burn diesel in the seven seater.

There is of course the passat GTE which may tick all the boxes. Note that the Golf GTE 0-60 is quicker than the official specs, around 6.3 - 6.5 secs with a fully charged battery. I would imagine its the same for the Passat or maybe a touch slower as its bigger.

If you want to go for real performance than ignore everything said so far on this thread and start asking about Teslas.
 

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Sort of correct our @donald but what ICE can deliver 100% power in a second (nevermind a millisecond)?
The power source is ready to deliver the power on the very next piston stroke. Whether your accel pedal, gearbox, drivetrain, supercharging, induction system and tyres can all deliver and keep up with it is another question!
 

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Discussion Starter #17
Thanks, all for your thoughts.
I'm test driving a Passat GTE on Monday for comparison. Luxury and technology will influence my decision. The presence of Apple Carplay will tick a box. I like the Outlander 360 camera and if the Passat has an equivalent parking aid then that will also be appreciated.
Got (what I think is) a good deal on the Outlander Gh4 at £33k including the 3 service schedule.
Will need a good deal from VW to sway me.
 

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Thanks, all for your thoughts.
I'm test driving a Passat GTE on Monday for comparison. Luxury and technology will influence my decision. The presence of Apple Carplay will tick a box. I like the Outlander 360 camera and if the Passat has an equivalent parking aid then that will also be appreciated.
Got (what I think is) a good deal on the Outlander Gh4 at £33k including the 3 service schedule.
Will need a good deal from VW to sway me.
Look forward to hearing what you think of the Passat compared to the Outlander. The Outlander was one I looked at as a potential replacement for the family car but problems with getting 3 car seats to fit properly in the back scuppered it. The kids are coming out of car seats now and I have considered a Passat estate GTE so will watch with interest. I think VW Passat will be expensive compared to the Outlander.
 

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Discussion Starter #19
I think VW Passat will be expensive compared to the Outlander.
Definitely. I'm also arranging a test in an Audi A3 Sportback e-tron at around the same time, though I think it might be too small for our needs. Both the VW and the Audi come out at a bit under 40k with the various options I've picked. Hoping to get the price down to £35k tops.
 

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Discussion Starter #20
Ok so to update. Our mechanic relative advised us to pass on the Audi A3 as they're
Mechanic bother-in-law said:
not very good cars
I had a test drive in the Passat GTE and it was more responsive, nippier and more stable than the Outlander, but then I guess none of that is a surprise.
One thing which hadn't even occurred to me is that the Outlander is automatic and my Audi is a manual. I hadn't even considered that there would be automatic gearbox delay or even a difference. It's been a long time since I drove an automatic.
So when I felt something similar from the Passat, I realised that I hadn't allowed for that at all with the Outlander.
And when the features of the Passat like 360 degree camera, electric tailgate and sunroof add two grand to the cost of the Passat, putting the list price over £40k, I've realised what good value the Outlander is. Plus there's an 11 week wait for the Passat, meaning it's going to be registered after April 1st meaning it's going to cost to tax it.
I think I'm going to go for the Outlander.
 
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