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Volkswagen e-up Review

Written by Allan Noble · 26/04/21

In the e-Up, Volkswagen has designed a production compact car to pack a punch in the city. It has been around since 2013 but was updated by Volkswagen in 2019 with an improved battery capacity, range & energy consumption.


The Volkswagen e-Up is an all-electric version of VW's popular Up, which was first unveiled in 2011. The car shares the same powertrain as other VW family models, such as the Skoda Citigo i-EV and the Seat Mii Electric. It offers a 160-mile claimed range, making it a real option for many city dwellers who wish to drive emission-free.

Range, Charging, & Emissions

Model Battery Size Wallbox charging time Rapid charging time
VW e-Up (2013) 18.7kWh 9 hours (3.3 kW) 30 mins (40 kW)
VW e-Up (2019) 36.8kWh 11 hours (7.1 kW) 45 mins (40 kW)

The real-world range of the VW e-Up is impressive. A 2013 edition of the car will provide a 99-mile range from a full charge. However, the updated version of the e-Up extends this to 160 miles thanks to its larger battery size. This is more than enough for a city car which is only going to be used for long motorway journeys from time to time. Either iteration of the e-Up is likely to be more than enough for most commutes, especially if it is possible to top the electric motor up when the car is parked at the office.

The increased range offered by the second generation of the e-Up will be a factor in many owner's decision about which type to buy. That said, the 36.8 kWh battery in the 2019 edition – compared to 18.7 kWh in the older version – is heavier. It weighs 15 kilos more, in fact. Helpfully, Volkswagen has done an excellent job of distributing this extra weight such that drivers won't notice it within the cabin.

Given that the electric motor remains the same in the newer version of the e-Up, providing 82bhp and plenty of torque, the charging time is the significant difference between the two models. The CCS fast charging option of the e-Up will offer a rapid charge of well under an hour, while overnight charging will be the norm for most wall outlet set-ups. Helpfully, you can configure the e-Up to only draw power after a certain time, thereby helping owners take advantage of lower electrical costs at night.

Next: Running costs