Unveiled: Volkswagen CrossBlue Concept

Already highly competitive in the mid and compact segments thanks to the success of the Passat and Jetta, Volkswagen expressed its intention to follow suit in the SUV market with its world premier of the CrossBlue concept and the CrossBlue Coupe, alongside the debut of the Passat Performance Concept.

Over 1.4 million mid-size SUVs were sold in 2012, and that number is expected to rise as the SUV replaces the minivan in popularity. Volkswagen called the car segment the second-most important on the market, so it’s obvious why the automaker would go after it.

The six-seat CrossBlue is an electric-diesel plug-in hybrid with an estimated 35 MPG as a hybrid and 89 MPGe as a full electric, which would be a segment leader. Volkswagen aims to make the vehicle the most fuel efficient SUV ever.

The concept shown in Detroit came with a well equipped, elegant and spacious interior, fit with leather, wood and chrome trim.

The CrossBlue Coupe is the compact version, and features Clean Diesel TDI and lithium-ion battery, which allows it to go into full-electric mode when needed. It can also be switched into four-wheel drive mode.