2007 World Green Car Award Finalist: the Vw Polo Bluemotion

By: Benjamin Hudson

The Volkswagen Polo BlueMotion sold in the European market was named as one of the finalists for the 2007 World Green Car of the Year. More than 40 automotive journalists from all over the world selected the top three finalists for this year's award. The other two finalists for the 2007 World Green Car of the Year award include the BMW Hydrogen 7 and the Mercedes-Benz E320 BLUETEC.

According to a Volkswagen Group official press release, "The Polo BlueMotion is Europe's most economical five-seat automobile, offering the equivalent of 60 miles per gallon. The key to the Polo BlueMotion's efficiency is the optimization of an already economical package. Incorporation of longer ratio gears in the standard five-speed manual transmission, application-specific light weight alloy wheels, and lower rolling resistance 165/70 R14 tires all contribute to increased fuel economy. The lightweight body structure has enhanced aerodynamics to further improve its efficiency. The Polo BlueMotion doesn't ask its owners to compromise, as its sprightly performance and sporty chassis dynamics provide the "fun to drive" element inherent in Volkswagen's brand DNA."

Introduced at the 2006 Geneva International Auto Show, the Volkswagen Polo BlueMotion hatchback model features a 3-cylinder TDI engine delivering 80 hp (59 kW) at 4,000 rpm and develops a maximum torque output of 144 lb.-ft. (195 Nm) rotating at engine speeds of 2,200 rpm. The engine significantly offers improved fuel efficiency with only 3.9 liters of fuel consumption. In addition, the Volkswagen Polo BlueMotion made it as a finalist in the 2007 World Green Car of the Year award because of the low exhaust (CO2) emissions provided by the 3-cylinder TDI engine. The reduced CO2 emissions was achieved, thanks to the engine's advanced systems including turbo diesel fuel direct injection, optimized exhaust gas recirculation (EGR), improved EGR cooler, and electrically powered EGR valve with and . The engine is connected through a standard 5-speed manual gearbox.

Exterior highlights of the Volkswagen Polo BlueMotion incude side flasher lamps integrated in the outside rearview mirrors, rear spoiler, radiator grille insert, front and rear bumpers in sporty design, side trim strips, sill panel, 14-inch "Jerez" alloy wheels with 165/70 R 14 performance tires, and the "BlueMotion" badge at the rear.

Inside, the Volkswagen Polo BlueMotion comes with four spoke steering wheel, indicator lamps and service interval indicator, seat stripes in "Popcorn" or "Select" pattern, and electric window lifts. In addition, advanced active and passive safety systems are also available as standard equipments including driver and front passenger air bags with front passenger airbag deactivation switch, side air bags for driver and front passenger, height adjustable 3-point automatic front safety belts with belt tensioners, rear head restraints, and antilock braking system (ABS) with convenience braking assist (BA).

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