The CrossBlue could anticipate a future production model, that would offer a seven-passengers capacity and would go on sale in the North American market.
The concept is based on VW’s Modular Transverse Matrix (MQB) which allows to implement different dimensional parameters including the wheelbase (2,980 mm), track widths and wheel sizes as well as a wide range of drivetrains – gasoline, diesel, natural gas, hybrid and electric.
The innovative plug-in hybrid system features a 140 kW TDI engine, two electric motors, a dual-clutch transmission with the “propshaft by wire” system.
According to Volkswagen, the CrossBlue is capable of an estimated 89 MPGe in the four-wheel drive SUV (EPA standard fuel economy equivalent for hybrid vehicles in the USA with full utilization of battery charge; combined Highway and City cycles); and 35 MPG (combined Highway and City) in pure diesel operation.
Conceptually, the CrossBlue combines the visual impact of an SUV with the spaciousness of a minivan.
The design was developed in Germany under Walter de Silva (Head of Design, Volkswagen Group) and Klaus Bischoff (Head of Design, Volkswagen Brand) – but in close coordination with Volkswagen of America.
The goal was to merge the clean lines of German Volkswagen “design DNA” with the masculine character of an American SUV.
The CrossBlue has very generous dimensions – it is 4,987 mm long, 2,015 mm wide and 1,733 mm tall.
The large track widths (1,686 mm front, 1,696 mm rear) along with the 21-inch alloy wheels (with 285/45 tires) and the flared wheel arches help disguise the dimensions and offer a relatively dynamic stance and masculine image.
The exterior of the CrossBlue – developed by a team led by Marc Lichte − features a very prominent and long hood that integrates air inlets for the engine, a roof line that is also long and a very short front overhang.
The vehicle’s silhouette ascends slightly towards the rear. This visual impression is reinforced by a character line that runs from the headlights back to the tail lights − it becomes wider towards the rear.
Above this – and typical of a Volkswagen – is the very precisely styled line terminating the row of side windows; the windows are enclosed by a solid aluminum frame.
The CrossBlue is equipped with two “fuel doors” − on the left and right sides of the rear body; the filler neck for the diesel tank and SCR reservoir is located on the passenger’s side; on the driver’s side, engineers integrated two electrical sockets behind the fuel door.
The first socket is used to charge the lithium-ion battery; the second can be used to connect such electrical devices as electric coolers or light systems for camping. In this case, the CrossBlue acts as an auxiliary electrical generator.
The front end and rear end are dominated by horizontal lines – a key element of Volkswagen design DNA that was further developed on the CrossBlue.
The front end, which was designed under lead designer Andreu Solar: the radiator grille trim – consisting of two solid aluminum struts and a centrally positioned VW logo – is now a 3D element that extends into the headlights.
These aluminum accents are key elements that define the new three- dimensional visual design of the dual headlamps implemented in LED technology and, in turn, the entire front end.
The upper aluminum strut frames the dual headlights, while the lower strut visually extends the radiator grille across the entire front end.
This gives the CrossBlue an even wider and more dominant yet friendly presence.
Among the exterio details are the air inlets in the bumper, which are trimmed by horizontally mounted, black painted elements with a very strong, three-dimensional honeycomb structures.
Beneath the bumper, the front end is terminated by trim in stainless steel look with integrated underbody protection.
At the rear, the tail lights are designed in the form of an “E” that opens towards the vehicle centerline.
In the inner area, the contours of these two “E” shapes (mirrored on each side, of course) are trimmed by aluminum accents, and each has two stripes painted in the exterior color.
The prominent tailpipes are designed in stainless steel look and are integrated in a trim panel with underbody protection that runs horizontally across the lower section at the rear.
The car is painted in painted in “CrossBlue Glass Flake” which creates a contrast to the body trim in stainless steel look that runs all around the lower body section.
The interior of the CrossBlue was designed under lead designer Tomasz Bachorsky.
The cabin is equipped with six individual seats in three rows, however in a potential production version three seats would be offered in the second row as an alternative.
At the rear, the seat positions are slightly elevated; children in particular will enjoy the better view. Nonetheless, headroom is very good throughout the vehicle. In front, it is 1,077 mm, in the second row 1,020 mm and in the third row 954 mm.
The layout is also comfortable in terms of legroom: up to 947 mm is available in the second row, and in the third row it is up to 917 mm.
Behind the third seating row is a cargo area with 335 liters capacity; when the seatbacks of the third row of seats are folded, this capacity grows to 812 liters, and load length is 1,387 mm.
If the seatbacks of the second row are folded as well, cargo capacity increases to nearly 2,000 liters; this increases the load length to 2,230 mm.
In the rear seating area too, the air nozzles of the automatic climate control system that are integrated in the roofliner ensure optimal temperatures inside.
The rear zones of the four-zone system can also be controlled from the second row of seats.
Among the distinctive details of the interior are the round-shaped lifting controls for the lights, climate control and four-wheel drive system, which emerge from their rest positions, which is flush with the cockpit surfaces, as soon as the driver starts the ignition.
The controls have rugged aluminum surrounds – which fits the character of a large SUV and is also typical of the Touareg.
Used material include aluminum, leather and wood – Head of Color & Trim Oona Scheepers decided to use dark stained banana tree wood.
The lines of these wood accents “flow” from the sporty gear shift panel − which opens in a downward direction – and ascend the center console and across the lower instrument panel to the door trim − playing a large role in defining the front interior space
Above these wood accents, and in the area of the two-part center armrest, dark leather in the “Marble Grey” color is used, while leather, trim pieces and fabrics are in a light beige color (“St. Tropez”) beneath the wood accents and as seat upholstery.
The advanced infotainment system include a 10.2 inch touchscreen on the center console and two iPad mini integrated in the head restraints of the first seating row.
All significant switches in the passenger compartment (except for the hazard flasher switch) are designed as soft touch switches with a touch control similar to that of a touch- screen.