Volvo readies plug-in hybrid V70 estate
Different wheels driven, depending on power source
Leccy Tech Volvo has formed a partnership with Swedish power company Vattenfall in an effort to bring a plug-in hybrid electric vehicle (PHEV) version of the V70 estate to market in 2012.
Volvo's plug-in V70 will feature rear- and front-wheel drive
The leccy V70’s 11.3kWh lithium-ion battery pack will power an electric motor attached to the rear wheels, while the front wheels will be hooked up to a diesel engine - as per the regular V70.
The electric motor will power the car for 50km (30 miles) of low-speed urban driving, or until around 70 per cent of the charge has been depleted. After this point the diesel engine will be the sole power provider.
So, depending on the power source, the hybrid V70 will either be a rear- or front-wheel drive car – but never a four-wheel drive.
The PHEV V70's battery pack will also be capable of receiving power through a regenerative braking system.
Regenerative braking will be used to juice-up the battery
Three prototype hybrid V70s will be rolled out onto Swedish roads this summer, after which the design and technology specifics will be finalised before production begins.
In Sweden, Vattenfall will offer customers the opportunity to sign an agreement for renewable electricity sourced specifically from wind or hydro power. Lars G Josefsson, Vattenfall's CEO, said the firm’s “working hard to eliminate carbon dioxide emissions from all electricity production”.
Virtually all Vatenfall’s electricity production in Sweden is emission-free, he claimed.
Volvo hasn’t made an announcement about hybrid V70 sales outside of its domestic market, but we see no reason why it shouldn’t offer the PHEV through other sectors of its European dealer network. ®
the article says nothing about the diesel kicking in above 50 kmph and CLEARLY states that both engines are NEVER deployed at the same time.
You want to try a VW Beetle or a Ford Capri in the snow.
Both suffer the same problem... The front wheels don't do anything! especially steering! Because both cars lack weight over the front (the Capri was only a 1.6, maybe a 2.8 or 3.0 would work better).
Then again, you can spin anything if you try hard enough... I managed to do a complete 360 in a Short wheelbase Mitsubishi Shogun 4x4... Coming down a hill, in 4 wheel drive, road icy, junction at the bottom, thought I'd loose a bit of the 5mph I was doing before I reached the junction... Engine breaking wasn't slowing me... touched the brake lightly and that was it... complete 360 down the road before coming to a halt... The faces on the drivers queued across the junction I was heading towards were an absolute picture! Windows full of huge eyeballs!
ever driven a volvo in snow?
Now, I'll admit, the last Volvo I owned was an 87, so perhaps Gramps Volvo finally died and new people are running the design show now.
I drove a Volvo in heavy winter snow for several years, and my Christ it was a godawful ride in snow. The design theory seemed to be "we'll make it weigh twice what it ought, and have an insanely strong passenger compartment, because we KNOW it's going to land tits-up sooner or later."
It more or less worked. I once spun out at low speed (20 mph or so) in heavy snow and ice. The vehicle who slammed into me had $5k worth of damage. I needed to reseat a hose on the engine block and drove home.
This new push-me-pull-you engine plant sounds like a ton of fun, yes indeed.