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by Matt Campbell

Volkswagen Australia has pulled the plug on any chance of plug-in hybrid models such as the Volkswagen Golf GTE and all-new Volkswagen Passat.

While sister brand Audi will launch the new A3 Sportback e-tron early in 2015 as a distinct third powertrain pillar for the brand, Volkswagen Australia has indicated it will instead focus its attention on conventional petrol and diesel models.

That means the Golf GTE – essentially the twin to the A3 e-tron – won’t be sold here, nor will any plug-in versions of the new Passat due here by the end of 2015.

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Kurt McGuiness, public relations manager for Volkswagen Australia, indicated that the brand sees little potential for the technology to gain significant sales traction at this point in time.

“We currently don’t have any plans to offer e vehicles in this market due to the limited infrastructure and consumer demand,” he said.

“In the current market environment we don’t see the need for hybrid models either as our petrol and diesel models already offer excellent efficiency at an affordable price,” McGuiness said.

But there is still hope for those who wish for a VW model that can be fuelled via the bowser or the powerpoint.

“Of course, we are open to reviewing our position if the market changes and there is increased demand for these models,” McGuiness said.

The move to lessen complexity in the German brand’s line-up has also seen the company drop slow-selling cars such as the Up! city car and possibly the Scirocco hot-hatch.




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