Volkswagen e-up! Revealed

We tested Volkswagen's tiny up! last year and thought its charismatic but minimalist design cues were pretty cool. Now, however, there's an electric version and it's going to hit the roads this year looking even sharper.

Making its full debut at the Frankfurt Motor Show later this year, the e-up! comes hot on the heels of an environmental barrage of new cars at the Geneva, including the futuristic XL1 and a plug-in hybrid Audi A3.

The e-up! will go on sale shortly after Frankfurt and UK deliveries begin early in 2014. VW are billing the little EV as being ideal for commuters or as an innovate second car, and with a 150km range it seems to fit the bill. Total weight is just 1,185kg (reasonable for an electric car) and although home-charging will take longer, fast charging will charge the battery to 80% in just half an hour. Top speed is just over 80mph and a 0-60mph time of 14 seconds is modest, so the e-up! isn't exactly fast.

The e-up! also features one of the chief hallmarks of VW's electric design strategy, with glowing brackets in the front bumper – first seen on the E-Bugster at last year's Detroit Motor Show. Other unique features include polished alloy wheels, a matte VW badge and a subtly unique interior. Blue stitching and chrome accents are employed to convey “a puristic impression that matches the vehicle concept of a full-fledged urban electric car”. We'll bring you more when we've had a chance to drive it.

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