VW has confirmed it is less than two years away from launching three electric or hybrid-electric models, with both a pure-electric and a plug-in hybrid Golf, and a plug-in hybrid Passat slated for launch in 2014.

“These cars are important in two ways: it is important to demonstrate your environmental credentials, and it’s important to demonstrate a technological knowhow and ability,” Volkswagen‘s UK boss Robert Hazlewood told BusinessCar.

“We’ve got the money and have been investing in all kinds of technology – the group is doing it all. Some manufacturers have put all their eggs in one basket but the VW Group across the range is capable of developing great solutions that will be right for individual markets across the world.”

Hazlewood defended VW’s late arrival to technologies that the likes of Vauxhall, Renault, Toyota and Nissan are all already operating in.

“We weren’t the first but you can bet every dollar you’ve got that we will be there with a very competitive solution.” A Volkswagen spokeswoman added: “We’ve never apologised for not being the first – we do it in our own time, when it’s affordable and we do it right.”

Although the new Golf hatchback is launching late this year, it will be around 18 months before the full model line-up is refreshed.

“We won’t see the rest of the range in 2013. I’ve seen the MPV [Golf Plus replacement] and it’s a very stylish five-seater,” said Hazlewood. “Golf Estate will come in 2014 too – the senior management have been saying ‘don’t forget it’s a Golf family’.”

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