VW’s Cross Coupe GTE Concept Sets Stage for Cross Blue

Five-seat SUV sets the design pattern for larger ute.

by on Jan.11, 2015

The 2015 Cross Coupe GTE concept revealed at the Detroit Auto Show is a precursor to the Cross Blue.

Volkswagen is looking to whet the appetites of those looking forward to its U.S.-built seven-passenger SUV with the 2015 Cross Coupe GTE concept revealed at the Detroit Auto Show.

The upscale, five-passenger concept is a “preview” of the long-awaited Cross Blue, which will be built in Tennessee beginning late next year. The Cross Coupe uses a plug-in hybrid system developing 355 horsepower and an all-wheel-drive system that uses an “electric driveshaft.”  VW estimated the mileage on the SUV at 70 MPGe.

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“The Cross Coupe GTE is the ambassador of a new design language developed by Volkswagen for the U.S.,” said Klaus Bischoff, chief designer at Volkswagen. “The concept car has a commanding presence; it is powerful with a look that could almost be described as aggressive.”

“Numerous details hint at how we envision a future production SUV model for North America. The underlying concept combines German engineering and design with a vehicle that suits the American lifestyle. That means high efficiency, clear and powerful design, logical operation and supreme quality – combined with lots of space, superior performance, and outstanding comfort.”

The Cross Coupe uses a plug-in hybrid system developing 355 horsepower and an all-wheel-drive system that uses an “electric driveshaft.”

The Cross Coupe has a zero-emissions range of up to 20 miles and can reach 60 mph from rest in just six seconds. The car has various operating modes: E-Mode, GTE, Hybrid, Off-road and Battery Hold/Battery Charge.

Powered by a 3.6-liter VR6 gasoline engine and two electric motors, the Cross Coupe’s six cylinder direct-injection engine delivers 276 hp and 258 pound-feet of torque. T

It’s augmented by the two electric motors producing 54 hp and 162 lb-ft in the front and 114 hp and 199 lb-ft at the rear. When combined, the 355 hp and 280 lb-ft, pushes the Cross Coupe from zero to 60 in six seconds with a top speed of 130 mph.

When powered by just the batteries, the concept can travel up to 20 miles. Once the batteries are exhausted, the gas-powered engine re-engages automatically.

VW estimated the mileage on the Cross Coupe GTE plug-in hybrid at 70 MPGe.

However, VW’s concept is more than just an exercise in how much technology it can squeeze into one SUV. The Grand Pacific Glacier blue exterior gets a bit of a makeover from the maker’s previous SUV concepts in 2012 and 2013. These changes should be reflected in the Cross Blue when it finally hits the market.

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The Cross Coupe’s exterior basically lives up to its name: it looks like VW crossed a coupe and an SUV. With a low roof line and sharp body angles, it’s a design that looks like it could be at home cruising city streets or toting ski equipment up to a mountain resort.

It sits on 22-inch aluminum alloy wheels, which when combined with the polished aluminum two-bar grille, exaggerate the SUV’s width and aggressive look.

The inside of the Cross Coupe is Volkswagen's vision a midsize SUV interior of tomorrow.”

While it’s more likely to be a “city car” if it were ever to find its way to dealer showrooms, it’s large wheel arches, short overhangs and a rear skidplate allow for “very competitive ramp breakover, approach and departure angles for excellent off-road performance,” the company said.

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The inside of the Cross Coupe “shows how Volkswagen designers envision a mid-size SUV interior of tomorrow.” The Ink Blue Nappa leather matches the exterior blue and complements the 10.1-inch infotainment touch screen, along with gesture controls like those shown in the Golf R Touch at the Consumer Electronics Show recently, in the center console.

The 12.3-inch instrumentation screen has a conventional shape, and can be formatted to the preferences of the driver.

The entire design is – not surprisingly – based on the German Bauhaus movement, which means clean lines, minimal fuss and a lot of cleanly integrated functions and components. The 12.3-inch instrumentation screen has a conventional shape, but all the information shown is digital and can be formatted to the preferences of the driver.

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Driver and passenger convenience is matched by their comfort with heated and cooled seats. The rear seat bench has a two-third/one-third split fold, resulting in a continuous cargo floor. The rear-seat climate control is also controlled via a touchscreen. Attachments for tablets are incorporated in the headrests of the rear seats and the Volkswagen Media Control app enables them to access the radio, media sources, and navigation via Wi-Fi.

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One Response to “VW’s Cross Coupe GTE Concept Sets Stage for Cross Blue”

  1. Jorge says:

    Don’t care at all for the high waistline with gun slot windows nor the snow plow front end styling. Even the color is a poor choice IMO for a show car. The auto makers are desperate to get consumers to buy hybrids and EVs but I suspect many consumers will “Just Say NO”.

    Instead of the gimmicks I’d like to see car makers offer as std. equipment heated windshield wiper blades, properly sized heating and cooling systems that can heat a cold car in a couple minutes or cool a hot car in a couple minutes. Sun visors that follow the sun as the vehicles makes turns, etc. would all be more useful than the infotainment crap that just distracts drivers.

    There is also plenty of thermal energy in the exhaust being wasted that could be used to improve fuel economy or provide the energy to power the other ideas listed above – like quick heating of the cabin. F1 actually uses the exhaust heat to create more power so there are many possibilities that are far more useful than the gimmicks being used to sell vehicles.

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