157mpg VW Golf GTE unveiled

* Volkswagen Golf plug-in hybrid announced * Pairs a 1.4-litre petrol engine with an electric motor * Official economy figures of 35g/km and 157mpg...

157mpg VW Golf GTE unveiled

The VW Golf GTE plug-in hybrid will do an official average of 157mpg emit just 35g/km of CO2.

The plug-in hybrid version of the Golf hatchback made its first public appearance at the Geneva motor show month, and is the first VW to come with a GTE badge.

It is powered by a 148bhp 1.4-litre turbocharged petrol engine, and a 101bhp electric motor, which combine to produce a total output of 201bhp. This enables the Golf GTE to cover the 0-62mph sprint in just 7.6 seconds, and go on to a top speed of 135mph.

Thanks to the rechargable battery, the GTE will be capable of driving on electric power alone for 31 miles and at up to 81mph before the engine takes over. The battery can be recharged from a standard domestic plug socket in just three and a half hours, or two and a half hours from a dedicated charging post.

The GTE can be driven in a dedicated 'e-mode', which maximises efficiency and keeps the car on electric power, or in a GTE mode that maximises performance.

Visually, the GTE is set apart from the rest of the Golf range by C-shaped daytime running lights. Otherwise, the car has the same styling tweaks as the Golf GTI. However, the styling accents that are red on the GTI are blue on the GTE.

The high-level navigation system is standard, and is controlled through a 6.5-inch colour touch-screen. The screen is also used to display driving aids, such as a range monitor, a diagram that shows which power source is driving the car, and statistics on how the car has been driven. Ownes will also be able to control elements of the car, and view information on driving statistics, via a smartphone application.

Customers will be able to order the VW Golf GTE from August, and the first cars will be heading to dealerships from late November. It is expected to be offered in only the five-door format.

Pricing will be confirmed in the spring, although it is expected that the GTE will be eligible for the £5000 Government grant for low-emission vehicles. Once this has applied, it is expected to sit between the VW Golf GTI and VW Golf R in the VW line-up, meaning its likely to cost around £28,000.