VW e-Golf, Electric eUp, Porsche 918 Spyder, Updated Panamera, and Refreshed Audi Debut in Frankfurt

By Christian Stampfer on 10 September 2013
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FRANKFURT—Audi, Porsche, and Volkswagen presented numerous world premieres and model updates on the first day of the 2013 Frankfurt Internationale Automobil Ausstellung (International Automobile Show).

The updated 2014 Audi A8 was presented to the public in Frankfurt as Audi tries to keep pace in the heavily competitive luxury car segment. In addition to some exterior changes, the A8’s engines were the beneficiary of significant attention in Ingolstadt.  The A8 3.0 TDI is now capable of developing 258 hp with a fuel economy rating of 39.8 mpg (5.9 l/100 km).  At the top of the range, the 4.2 TDI hits 385 hp and develops an industry-leading 626 pound-feet of torque.

Enhanced technology features for the A8 include a head-up display, which is available in the A8 for the first time, and Audi´s newly developed LED headlights with Matrix LED technology. In these headlights, the high-beam is comprised of 25 individual light-emitting diodes that can be switched on and off or dimmed individually depending on the current driving situation. This enables the headlight system to react extremely precisely to other vehicles and lighting situations while always brightly illuminating the road.

The Audi A8's new headlights

The Audi A8’s new LED headlights

Volkswagen presented the electric version of its best selling car, the VW Golf, alongside an electric version of the VW e-up.  The VW e-Golf offers a driving range of 118 miles (190 km) and develops a power output of 115 hp and 199 pound-feet of torque.  Acceleration from a standstill to 62 mph (100 km/h) is accomplished in 10.4 seconds and the maximum speed is electronically limited to 87 mph (140 km/h).

The second world premiere at Volkswagen is the electric version of VW up.  The VW e-up was announced with a list price of €27,000 and directly targets the BMW i3, which will sell for €34,950. Both cars offer space for four passengers, although the BMW i3 is a more luxurious vehicle.

The electric engine of the VW e-up develops 82 PS 154 pound-feet of torque, with a driving range of 99 miles (160 km). The car’s batteries can be recharged within half an hour when plugged into a direct current electricity outlet. The e-up goes from 0-62 mph (0-100 km/h) in 12.4 seconds and has a top speed of 80 mph (130 km/h). The e-Golf is expected to go on sale in the beginning of 2014 while the VW e-up is slated to arrive at German dealerships shortly after the IAA.

Porsche 918 Spyder

Porsche 918 Spyder

Meanwhile, Porsche introduced the production-version of the Porsche 918 Spyder. Driven on the show floor by rally champion Walter Röhrl, the car broke the existing lap record on the Nürburgring Nordschleife, with a lap time of 6 minutes and 57 seconds, and an average driving speed of 111 mph (179.5 km/h).

The 918 Spyder is powered by a 4.6-liter eight-cylinder engine with 608 hp and an electric motor with 286 hp. The combined power output of both engines is 887 hp which catapults the super sportscar from 0-62 mph (0-100 km/h) in only 2.8 seconds. The 918 Spyder’s maximum speed is 214 mph (345 km/h) and the fuel economy rating is said to be 71 mpg (3.3 l/100 km).

Porsche also introduced an updated version of the Panamera, now four years after its debut.  The 2014 Porsche Panamera received a completely redesigned diesel engine with increased power output and lower fuel consumption. The all-new turbocharged 3.0-liter V6 diesel engine delivers 300 hp and develops 479 pound-feet of torque between 1,750 and 2,500 rpm.

The new diesel-powered Panamera accelerates from 0-62 mph (0-100 km/h) in 6 seconds and has an increased top speed of 160 mph (259 km/h).  The Panamera Diesel’s fuel consumption is 36.7 mpg (6.4 l/100 km) in the EU test cycle. Porsche will offer the car with an optional rear-axle differential lock with Porsche Torque Vectoring Plus (PTV+).


Dan Collins contributed reporting to this article.

(Photos: Accura Media Group)