With all apologies to the Infiniti M, there’s a now a new claimant to the title of “World’s Fastest Hybrid”: Thanks to the combined efforts of Volkswagen, Motor Trend magazine, and A-Salt Racing and Advanced Product Engineering, a 2013 VW Jetta Hybrid recently ran to a record-breaking speed of 185.394 mph. Per Volkswagen: “This is the fastest speed ever achieved by a production-based hybrid car on the famed Bonneville Salt Flats” in Utah.
“Achieving this speed at Bonneville shows that the all-new 2013 Jetta Hybrid is a distinctly different offering in the compact hybrid class,” continued Jonathan Browning, CEO and president, VW Group of America. “As well as being expected to achieve combined fuel economy of 45 mpg, the Jetta Turbo Hybrid also retains the fun-to-drive nature you expect from a Volkswagen in a segment dominated by less exciting vehicles.”
2013 VW Jetta Hybrid: Recap
To be sure, the record-setting 2013 VW Jetta Hybrid was massaged a bit to achieve that top speed, but the production model should live up to Browning’s comments, thanks to an innovative powertrain setup with numerous cutting-edge technologies, including:
- A 1.4-liter turbocharged I4 that makes 150 hp and 184 lb.-ft. of torque
- A 27-hp electric motor hooked to a lightweight 1.1 kWh lithium-ion battery pack
- The hybrid segment’s first seven-speed dual-clutch automatic transmission
- “Stop and go” tech that shuts off the engine when the driver releases the gas pedal, even at speeds of up to 84 mph
- Engine-decoupling, which disconnects the engine from the drivetrain when coasting to reduce friction, increase efficiency and enhance regenerative-braking functionality
The tale of the tape here: Backed by a system total of 170 hp—the same amount found in the up-level Jetta SE—the Jetta Hybrid will be able to post a best-in-class 0-60 time of less than 9 seconds while achieving 45 mpg in combined driving (full EPA grades are unavailable at this time). Further, the car will be able to travel up to 1.2 miles, at speeds up to 44 mpg, on electricity alone.
Drivers can look for the 2013 VW Jetta Hybrid in dealerships before the end of the year, at a price that’s still TBD.