With a fuel consumption of 261 mpg, the Volkswagen XL1 aims to redefine the automobile industry by becoming the worldâ€™s most fuel-efficient hybrid car.
The XL1 represents the third stage of Volkswagenâ€™s â€ś1-liter carâ€ť strategyâ€”a goal envisioned by Dr. Ferdinand PiĂ«chto, Chairman of the Supervisory Board of Volkswagen, to produce a practical, everyday car that can travel 100 kilometers per 1 liter of fuel. With a fuel efficiency of 100km/.9L, the XL1 has achieved an even better result.
Powered by a two-cylinder TDI (Turbocharged Direct Injection) engine and an E-motor supplied by a lithium-ion battery (rechargeable by using a regular household outlet), the XL1 can accelerate from 0 to 100km/h in 11.9 seconds (reaching an electronically-controlled maximum speed of 160km/h or 99mph) while producing CO2 emissions of only 24 grams per kilometer. When running on the E-motor alone, the XL1 can travel a distance of up to 35 kilometers with zero emissions.
How does it do it? Weighing in at 795kg (1,753lbs), the XL1 is extremely lightweight, with a carbon fiber reinforced polymer (CFRP) body and aerodynamic design (viewed from the top, the XL1 looks like a dolphin) to maximize speed and fuel efficiency. Not only lightweight, the CFRP body is also strong and durable, ensuring passenger safety. To lower production costs, Volkswagen has developed and patented the aRTM (advanced Resin Transfer Moulding) process to manufacture CFRP.
After the XL1â€™s successful debut at the Qatar Motor Show in early 2011, Volkswagen confirmed that the XL1 will go to market, with plans for a small production run in 2013. According to Volkswagen CEO Martin Winterkorn, the XL1 will be first introduced in Europe, initially Germany, with the U.S. and China to follow.
Making the jump from drawing board to reality, the XL1 is a car that doesn’t simply improve on existing technologies but trailblazes a new path toward efficiency, style and sustainability.
Watch the XL1 in action below or read more.