Volkswagen will soon expand its lineup of electric cars and plug-in hybrids, according to reports in German media, with new entries on both the high and low ends of its range.

But the rumored new models likely won’t be sold in the U.S.

They will, however, help VW meet tighter European emissions standards, as well as electric-car adoption targets in its home market of Germany.

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The new models will be a plug-in hybrid version of the next Phaeton luxury sedan, and an all-electric version of the next Polo, according to Germany’s Autozeitung.

Expected to appear in June 2017, the next Volkswagen Phaeton will reportedly feature a plug-in hybrid powertrain combining a six-cylinder gasoline engine with electric propulsion.

As with the previous model, the range-topping engine offering will be a W-12--but this time it could be teamed with a mild-hybrid system.

2006 Volkswagen Phaeton

2006 Volkswagen Phaeton

Like the Audi A8 with which it shares the group's MLB platform, the next Phaeton will also reportedly feature an aluminum body to save weight.

The current-generation Phaeton was sold in the U.S. for a handful of years, but it proved something of a sales disaster.

Its combination of luxury car pricing and size with a humble VW badge and relatively anonymous styling apparently didn't suit the tastes of buyers here.

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There have been rumors that Volkswagen will bring the Phaeton back to the U.S., but for now they are just that.

In Europe and China, at least, the Phaeton plug-in hybrid will compete with the BMW 740e xDrive and Mercedes-Benz S550 Plug-In Hybrid full-size sedans.

On the opposite end of the spectrum, Volkswagen will also reportedly offer an all-electric version of its Polo hatchback.

2014 Volkswagen Polo GTI

2014 Volkswagen Polo GTI

The Polo is a model that slots below the Golf in size--it would be dubbed a subcompact in North America--that isn't sold in the U.S.

Just like its larger sibling, the electric Polo (e-Polo?) will be offered alongside gasoline and diesel versions.

Volkswagen also builds the plug-in hybrid Golf GTE for the European market, so perhaps it could offer a similar all-electric/plug-in hybrid combination with the Polo as well.

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The carmaker will likely need additional plug-in models to meet stricter emissions standards—both in the U.S. and its home market.

European Commission regulations require carmakers to achieve fleet-average emissions of 130 grams of carbon dioxide (CO2) per kilometer by next year, and 95 g/km by 2020.

There’s also talk of stricter standards for the period beyond that.

2015 Volkswagen Golf GTE

2015 Volkswagen Golf GTE

VW Group chairman Martin Winterkorn has said that carmakers can cut emissions further, but has advocated against discussing post-2020 standards for the time being.

He has also said that Volkswagen will be able to help Germany meet a pre-established goal of having 1 million electric cars on its roads by 2020.

That is, provided conventional hybrids without plugs are included in that total.

NOTE: Green Car Reports extends its thanks to reader George Wand for translating the source material to provide a counterpoint to automated online translation utilities.


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