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VW's new people car goes 'Blue'

2007-11-15 08:03
Mere weeks after VW unveiled its Up! and Space Up! concepts, the German manufacturer has unveiled a green Blue version of this little MPV at the Los Angeles Motor Show.

The concept has what VW claims is the first high temperature fuel cell and 12 litihium ion batteries. A 45-kW electric motor is driven by battery power alone, and allows for a range of up to 40 km.

Energy is topped up via an electrical outlet or VW's high temperature fuel cell that extends the range on the electric motor by a further 71 km.

The little MPV is also fitted with a large solar panel on the roof that a charge the lithium-ion battery pack when light falls on it.

The new high temperature fuel cell pioneered here is, what the manufacturer terms, "a turning point in research on fuel cells for mass production".

Running on battery power alone, the space up! blue is capable of reaching 100 km/h from standstill in 13.7 seconds and has a top speed of 120 km/h.

The Space Up! Blue's interior, accessed through a pair of butterfly doors that hinge from both the A- and C-pillars, features a mix of touchscreen interfaces and innovative materials.

Many of the surfaces are constructed out of recycled materials - the instrument panel and the door mouldings are made out of organic plastics or biopolymers.

Following the Up! in Frankfurt and the Space Up! at the Frankfurt and Tokyo shows respectively, the Space Up Blue is the third variant in VW's new small vehicle family.

Development of Up! production versions is underway and VW aims to have the vehicles available before the end of the decade.


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