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Zero Emission VW

VW's space up! blue fuel cell concept combines an electric motor, lithium-ion batteries and a solar panel to get a range of 65 miles

The zero emissions space up! blue is the third in Volkswagen's up! concept range currently being showcased in a global tour of major auto industry events. Like the space up!, the "blue" is a micro-van designed to provide the carrying capacity of a larger vehicle, but what separates the new variant is the powerplant -- a rear-mounted, all-electric 45 kW (61 PS) motor utilizes the world's first high temperature fuel cell and twelve lithium-ion batteries plus there's a large solar panel on the roof that feeds up to 150 Watts of extra energy into the battery.

When charged via an electrical outlet the space up! blue has a range of 65 miles -- more than adequate for most urban commuters -- but the use of the high-temperature fuel cell (HT-FC) boosts the range by a further 155 miles. According to Volkswagen the new HT-FC system represents offers important advantages compared to all other fuel cell systems: including lower weight, greater everyday utility and lower cost.

the space up! blue has a length of 144.9 inches and weighs 1,090 kilograms including the fuel cell and batteries. The high temperature fuel cell is located at the front of the car with the bank of lithium-ion batteries positioned under the rear seat near the motor.

First unveiled at the LA Auto show in November, the space up! blue study was shown alongside its two stablemates for the first time at the 2007 Bologna Motor Show last week.

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