Both are production models, with the PHEV to go on sale first later this year.
[UPDATE, April 25] Live images from the Beijing Motor Show have been added at the beginning of the gallery, below.
Following yesterday’s unveiling of the Enspire Concept, Buick is ready to roll out a pair of production models. Both go by the name of Velite 6, but one of them is a plug-in hybrid whereas the other takes the shape of a fully electric vehicle. Before you ask which is which, the one on the right lacks the combustion engine (and the fuel cap on the rear fender).
Speaking of the ICE, the plug-in hybrid version comes with a naturally aspirated 1.5-liter gasoline engine that has been “tuned for hybrid vehicles.” It works together with two electric motors, an electronically controlled variable transmission, and a lithium-ion battery pack to give the partially electrified Velite a maximum range of 700 kilometers (435 miles).
Fuel consumption in the combined cycle stands at a remarkably low 1.4 liters / 100 km. Doing a quick conversion, that works out to 168 miles per gallon, but bear in mind the number is not exactly accurate considering the method the cars are being tested in China and in the United States is significantly different.
The plug-in hybrid Velite 6 will offer several driving modes, allowing the owner to switch between the power of the combustion engine, the punch delivered by the electric motors, and their combined forces.
As far as the pure electric version is concerned, details about the zero-emissions model are rather scarce at this point. Buick says it benefits from a new-generation powertrain that will provide customers with a “smooth, quiet and natural driving experience.” Like with the PHEV model, the entirely electric Velite 6 will be accessible via the owner’s smartphone set to work as a virtual key to enter and start the car.
The first to go on sale will be the plug-in hybrid scheduled to be launched in China this year, with the EV programmed to arrive at a later date.