Volkswagen’s latest SUV concept, the T-Prime GTE, is a map of things to come, signaling the development of a completely new, full-size model.
It appears that the Touareg’s reign at the top of Volkswagen’s SUV food chain is almost over, as the model will most likely receive a bigger sibling to bear the brunt upmarket.
The concept’s dimension could offer a glimpse of the future production-variant, measuring 6.7 inches / 171mm longer than the current Touareg (199.6 inches / 5,070mm in length, 78.7 inches / 1,999mm wide and 67.2 inches /1,707mm tall).
The imposing concept is powered by a a 375 horsepower and 699Nm (516 lb-ft) plug-in hybrid drive, incorporating a 134hp and 258 lb-ft (349Nm) electric motor – cleverly housed in the transmission – and a 2.0-liter, 248hp and 273 lb-ft (370Nm) of torque turbocharged gas engine. The vehicle’s battery can charge externally, as the powertrain’s name suggest, or while driving.
The impressive total output is delivered to all four wheels through Volkswagen’s 8-speed automatic gearbox, a limited-slip diff, and 4Motion permanent all-wheel-drive system, while still managing to boast a combined fuel consumption, in the NEDC cycle, of 87 MPGe US (2.7 l/100km or 104.5 MPGe UK). Without the aid of the electric motor, the figure goes down to 29 mpg US (8.1 l/100km or 34.8mpg UK).
Visually, the T-Prime’s exterior is reserved and poised, but the cabin greets the occupants with a futuristic design where almost all the commands are executed as touch-sensitive surfaces.