Review: Volkswagen e-UP! Part One


For the third November on the trot, I have an electric car to play with. Having thoroughly tested the Volkswagen e-Golf over the summer, I quickly realised that if you want to properly test an electric car, you must do so in the winter. It’s hard on the battery and heater use batters range.

The Volkswagen e-UP! rapid charges in Oswestry.

The Volkswagen e-UP! rapid charges in Oswestry.

Straight away, I decided to drive to Mile End services at Oswestry. This was a comfortable drive in the e-Golf and I knew there was a rapid charger there. The claimed range of the e-UP! is 93 miles, though Volkswagen (to its credit) advises that the range is more like 80 miles, and as little as 50-75 miles in winter. The charger is almost exactly 60 miles from my house. This would be exciting!

I eventually got there with nine miles of range remaining. Tight, but not impossibly so and I hadn’t had to massively change my driving style. Yes, I’d kept to a 50mph maximum, but that’s the thing about EVs – you tend to drive them economically and hoofing it is a sure fire way to run out of juice on a long-distance trip.

The journey home was rather different though, as the remnants of Storm Barney stole vital miles from me! I had to employ every hypermile technique I could to stretch out the miles and at one stage, the car predicted I had fewer miles left in the ‘tank’ than I had left to cover.

Driving like this is not fun and it reminded me that the e-UP! just doesn’t have the range for long distance jaunts. Even if I could find a rapid charger every 60 miles, that’s then at least a half-hour stop before being able to depart again. Not good enough.

The news certainly isn’t all bad though, so stay tuned for Part Two! In the next report, I’ll be testing the e-UP!s off road ability and asking the big question. Is it good for hooning?

Below is the video of Winter Range Issues. Enjoy!


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