Close your eyes and say the word “hybrid”. More than likely, an image of rip-roaring, land scorching and face tearing speed doesn’t come to mind. While more associated with mpg and efficiency, the gas/electric vehicle isn’t entirely limited from triple digit blasts and recently, Volkswagen proved some skeptics wrong. Officially taking the title “World’s Fastest Hybrid” is the Jetta Hybrid which, albeit modified, hit a top speed of 185.394 mph.
The speed run was performed in a 2013 Turbo Hybrid on the legendary Bonneville Salt Flats of Nevada. While quick enough in stock trim, hitting record-setting speeds required a bit of modification to the Jetta’s powertrain. Volkswagen’s R&D team in Wolfsburg, Germany took the hybrid under the knife to produce enough power to hit the pace while the rest of the car was overseen by A-Salt Racing and Advanced Product Engineering from California. Motor Trend Associate Road Test Editor Carlos Lago was placed behind the wheel and let his right foot do the talking to prove that quietly efficient doesn’t have to mean slow.
“Achieving this speed at Bonneville shows that the all-new 2013 Jetta Hybrid is a distinctly different offering in the compact hybrid class,” said Jonathan Browning, CEO and President of VW Group of America.
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