SEAT is thinking Electric for the future


SEAT has announced it is working on its first electric car designed, developed and manufactured inSpain. And, as well as unveiling the prototype Altea XL Electric Ecomotive, a totally electrically-driven zero-emissions car, the Spanish manufacturer also presented the prototype Leon TwinDrive Ecomotive, a plug-in hybrid.


Over the next few months SEAT will make available units of both models to governmental institutions in Cataloniaand Madrid for use in their vehicle fleets. This will provide SEAT with valuable information on use of the cars for assessment with a view to mass production of electric vehicles in the medium-term. The company envisages the launch of its first electric plug-in hybrid car in 2015, to be followed a year later by an all-electric car.


SEAT’s strategy is to commit to a wide range of alternative technologies. To this end the Spanish manufacturer is unveiling two different but complementary models at the same time.


SEAT’s President James Muir stated: “Customers demand a more sustainable form of mobility, but their needs are diverse. Therefore, we believe that a parallel strategy of developing two different technologies will put SEAT in the best position to meet their needs”.


The announcement of the launch of the first electric vehicles coincides with the start of the biggest new product offensive SEAT has known. The company will be launching four new models onto the marketplace over the forthcoming twelve months. The first will be SEAT’s new urban vehicle – the Mii which is expected to go on sale here inIrelandin June 2012.


The Altea XL Electric Ecomotive, SEAT’s first electric car


The Altea XL Electric Ecomotive has a range of 135km and as with all its vehicles, SEAT guarantees driving pleasure with an electric drivetrain producing 115 hp (85kW) and 270 Nm of torque. The top speed is limited to 135 km/h. With its spacious passenger compartment and generous boot, the electric Altea XL is equally suitable for family or transport company use.


As the location of the batteries is under the rear seats and the boot, there is no intrusion on the passenger compartment. A regeneration system with adjustable braking torque optimises energy use. And when the electric Altea XL is parked in the sun, the rooftop photovoltaic cells recirculate fresh air inside the passenger compartment reducing the energy needed afterwards by the climatic system.


Dr. Matthias Rabe, executive Vice-president for R&D, has stated that “SEAT has its electric future assured. With the electric Altea XL we are showing just how mature our technology is”. He added “the electric Altea XL was an intentionally studied choice for the first fleet. It will enable us to experiment with a wide variety of uses”.


Leon TwinDrive, an all-purpose car


The new SEAT Leon TwinDrive Ecomotive is a ground-breaking concept in the field of plug-in hybrids, by combining the advantaged of emission-free driving with the range of a traditional internal combustion engine vehicle. In electric mode the TwinDrive has a range of 52km, with a top speed of 120 km/h. In combined mode (electrical plus combustion) the consumption forecast is only 1.7 litres of fuel or 18.5 kWh per 100 km, the equivalent of a rock-bottom 39 g/km of CO2, with a top speed of 170 km/h.


Dr. Matthias Rabe, SEAT executive Vice-president for R&D said, “The Leon TwinDrive Ecomotive is an exciting and ground-breaking solution. Technically, it allows you to drive in all-electric mode, while at the same time enjoying smart hybrid drive”. To which he adds “Thanks to its great range, none of our customers will need to change their lifestyle or transport habits”.


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