Volkswagen T-Prime Concept GTE-25

Volkswagen’s T-Prime Concept GTE has been unveiled at the Beijing Auto Show. The SUV previews the brand’s aim to have seven new electric and plug-in hybrid models in the market by 2020. Said models will all be made in China, with a new design and development centre is also being planned for the country.

The T-Prime Concept GTE is a four-seater that is said to offer the comfort of a sedan, the spaciousness of an estate, traction that’s superior to all other types of cars, the agility of a sports car – thanks to its state-of-the-art chassis – and the efficiency of a compact car, Volkswagen stated.

The T-Prime is described by the brand as a premium SUV. Measuring in at 5,069 mm in length – the SUV is 10 mm longer than the Phaeton. Elsewhere, its width is 2,000 mm, while height comes in at 1,708 mm. The concept sits on Volkswagen’s MLB platform that underpins the second-gen Audi Q7 and Bentley Bentayga.

As seen before, the SUV possesses C-shaped daytime running lights located at the front bumper. At the side, there are character lines and flared wheel arches, while 22-inch alloy wheels wrapped in 285/40 sized tyres are present. At the rear, there are a pair of LED tailamps and the tailgate extends into the bumper to create a low load sill.

Inside, the display and controls are all digital, while in place of conventional switches are touchscreen and touch-sensitive surfaces, plus gesture and voice controls. The steering wheel also gets swipe gestures and pressure sensing abilities.

It features a Curved Interaction Area, which comprises a 12-inch Active Info Display and a 15-inch infotainment system. The latter will see three thematic tiles that can be freely customised by the user. Content that can be shown include the media library, weather data, voice mails or navigation. Similarly, the content can be moved from the headunit to the 12-inch display.

Meanwhile, there’s a combination of aluminium, wood and blue leather as the main materials of the interior. In the rear, there’s a pair of 10.1-inch tablets in the back of the headrests, while a 9.6-inch touchscreen controls the climate functions and seat adjustments.

At the heart of the SUV is a turbocharged 2.0 litre four-cylinder TSI mill with 248 hp and 370 Nm of torque. The engine is paired with a 134 hp/350 Nm electric motor integrated into the eight-speed automatic transmission, which also has a limited-slip differential built-in. Meanwhile, the transmission is controlled “by wire” using a glass scroll wheel.

According to the company, it has 4Motion all-wheel-drive as well. When in E-Mode, the T-Prime Concept GTE has an all-electric travel range of up to 50 km. In Hybrid mode, it combines the electric motor and the engine.

Volkswagen T-Prime Concept GTE-53

In GTE mode, the SUV will have a combined output of 375 hp and 700 Nm of torque, with adjustments to the throttle, transmission and steering. Furthermore, the T-Prime will be able to accelerate from 0-100 km/h in six seconds and reach its top speed of 223 km/h in GTE mode.

As for the 14.1 kWh lithium ion battery, it can be charged in eight hours via a 3.6 kW charger or in two and a half hours with a 7.2 kW charger. In hybrid mode, the SUV claims to achieve a combined fuel consumption of 2.7 litre per 100 km on the NEDC cycle. When the battery is flat, the SUV’s claimed fuel consumption rating rises to eight litres per 100 km.

The T-Prime Concept GTE is part of the brand’s SUV offensive which will start with the new Tiguan, the Touareg, along with two new SUV models: a T-Roc inspired model and the T-Cross Breeze.