Volvo working on three new electric-cars with range-extending engines

Volvo V60 Plug-in Hybrid Concept

Swedish safety king, Volvo, has just announced that it will be introducing three new electric vehicles with range-extending engines, or simply put hybrids. With support from the Swedish Energy Agency and the European Union, Volvo’s three “technical concepts feature a variety of technology.

First off, there’s the gas engine, which is a three banger that’s good for about 60hp. It’s then mated to a 111hp electric motor but there’s a difference. Volvo says that the way the engine assists the electric motors is different from other offerings and makes their new models capable of achieving over 600 miles on each cars’ total range.

The three concepts are two C30s and one V60. The first C30 has the system described above. But the gas engine is in no way connected to the drivetrain and rather serves the sole purpose of regenerating the car’s battery pack. So this first concept is a range-extending version.

The second C30 features what Volvo calls a “parallel-connected range extender” and isn’t really a range-extending model. The gas engine drives the rear wheels through a six-speed automatic cog swapper while the electric motor powers the front wheels. This concept we think may hint at a sporty hybrid model that could compete with the Honda CR-Z because the Volvo’s gas engine combined with the electric motors makes about 190hp, but the gas engine can be turbocharged to over 300hp for a 0-60 time of under six seconds.

The last concept is much like the first, but on a larger car application—the Volvo V6—and in combination with the second concept. It features the same “parallel- connected” system, but instead of the motors being mounted at separate axles, they share the same space under the hood. The package then drives the front-wheels through a two-stage automatic cog swapper allowing for the gas motor to assist under high-speeds, where an electric motor would be deemed less efficient due to higher motor speeds.

All of these models are just concepts as Volvo is still heavy under the research and development stages and none of them have a true green light for mass production. If any of them do make it however, they won’t reach showrooms until closer to 2020.

– By: Chris Chin