VW and CNG
Earlier this year Volkswagen Group announced that it was upping the number of new electric vehicles that it would be launching by 2028 from 50 to nearly 70. What’s more, given that increase the company thinks that the number of electric vehicles that will roll out of factories in its global network will be on the order of 22 million rather than the previously estimated 15 million.
But with that said, the company is also looking at other means by which it will have reduced CO2 emissions, and one of which, which is available right now, is the use of compressed natural gas (CNG) for fueling vehicles.
Volkswagen Group offers an array of CNG vehicles.
According to Stephen Neumann, Volkswagen Group Representative for CNG Mobility, who obviously has more than passing interest in the subject, especially as the part of the organization developing those various MEB-based EVs seem to get the lion’s share of attention: “CNG has an important role to play in the alternative drive systems strategy that runs alongside the Group’s electrification offensive.”
But here’s an important thing to note, as Neumann continued, “It is sufficiently proven, immediately available, efficient and cost-effective.”
And for those who are faced with the challenges of negotiating some major European cities, there’s the kicker: “Furthermore, CNG cars are not affected by driving bans in city centers.”
At present, the Group has 17 models that have CNG power, vehicles ranging from the diminutive Polo to MAN and SCANIA trucks and buses. And there are two more from ŠKODA on the way.
Realize that CNG is used in conventional (but slightly modified) internal combustion engines. For example, the Audi 2.0 TFSI, which won the 2019 “International Engine of the Year” award in the category for engines between 150 and 250 metric horsepower, is used in the Audi A5 Sportback g-tron—a CNG vehicle.
Fuel efficiency. Cost effectiveness. Reduced emissions.
Seems like a winner.
Incidentally: none of these VW Group CNG models are available in the U.S. market.
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