First on the spectacular list of new products for the 2010 calendar year is a car based on entirely new concepts and technology, a coupé with a hybrid drive that is extremely fast and yet futuristic in its fuel economy.
It has sports appeal and sharp styling yet is remarkably elegant –– positioned between the Europe’s bestselling sports car, the Scirocco, and the internationally successful CC. Its name: the New Compact Coupé (NCC). Site of its world premiere: Detroit, Michigan at the North American International Auto Show (January 11 to 24).
It has a top speed of 227 km/h and needs a short 8,6 seconds for the classic sprint to 100 km/h.
Just over a month after the debut of the most fuel-efficient four-seater in the world –– the Up! Lite in Los Angeles –– this new concept car confirms once again that future Volkswagen hybrid vehicles will not only focus on fuel economy, but –– similar to pure petrol and diesel versions of Europe’s most successful automobile brand –– will also aim to be sporty and fun to drive. In the first half of the year, Volkswagen will launch its first hybrid model on the market under the VW label — a SUV with full-time all-wheel drive.
Meanwhile, the New Compact Coupé shows, both technically and visually, how Volkswagen envisions a front-wheel drive hybrid for the compact class.
Recovering kinetic energy: In braking, the electric motor –– now operating as a generator –– recovers kinetic energy which is then stored in the lithium-ion battery. Of course, just like Volkswagen’s new BlueMotion models, the New Compact Coupe also has a Stop-Start system on board to further reduce fuel consumption, especially in urban areas and in stop-and-go traffic.
The unique interplay of efficiency and dynamics is reflected once again in the NCC’s styling, starting with a “Tungsten Silver Metallic” exterior.
Klaus Bischoff, chief designer for the Volkswagen Brand, said “Styling of a coupe is considered the ultimate in automotive design. Our team has achieved a symbiosis of efficient technologies and elegance in the New Compact Coupé that is unique in its expression.
“Just a few precisely placed lines and powerfully sculpted surfaces have created a timeless dynamic and purist elegance that is typical of Volkswagen.”
The front of the New Compact Coupe shows an extremely confident and focused expression. Moreover, the NCC’s width is emphasised by the horizontal line styling with integrated bi-xenon headlights –– including LED daytime running and turn signal lights. The technically complex headlights contribute to an unmistakable visual recognition of the concept car –– both day and night.
In the car’s side profile, styling properties characteristic of all new Volkswagens of the past year have been merged with elegant and yet sporty coupe features, resulting in a new interpretation of the design DNA. The best examples of this are the characteristic tornado line and the powerfully emphasised curves of the wheel arches.
They intersect the main volume of the large, homogeneous surfaces, conveying a powerful dynamic. The image of the side windows rounds out this impression with a concise signature. Forging a stylistic bridge to current models are the 19-inch “Lugano” type alloy wheels.
The cargo area of the New Compact Coupé is decidedly powerful in design. Clean surfaces and a muscular shoulder section dominate the image here too.
A spoiler lip that reduces air turbulence was styled into the top of the trunk lid; it further improves the car’s remarkable aerodynamics. At the bottom there is a stylised diffuser; the tailpipe of the exhaust system is embedded here for a positive aerodynamic effect.
The NCC is a four-seater with exceptional long-distance touring comfort and generous occupant space, with sport seats upholstered in light-coloured, “Berry White” leather.
The lower cockpit area, portions of the centre console and the door trim panels also carry this lighter shade. By contrast, all other surfaces (except accents and controls), including the leather-trimmed steering wheel, are styled in a darker “Grigio Quartz” colour. –– Conceptcarz.