The Volkswagen XL1 was unveiled for the first time in the United States at the 23rd Annual Society of Environmental Journalists (SEJ) Conference at the Chattanooga Convention Center. The XL1 boasts of an estimated European combined fuel consumption rating of 261 mpg (over 200 estimated US mpg) and an all-electric range of to 32 miles.
Oliver Schmidt, General Manager of the Engineering and Environmental Office (EEO), Volkswagen Group of America, Inc., remarked that the XL1 provides a “glimpse into Volkswagen’s present and future eco-mobility capabilities, and highlights the ultimate successes of ‘Thinking Blue’.”
Aside from the US debut of the XL1, Volkswagen’s participation in the SEJ Conference also entailed a tour of its LEED Platinum-certified assembly plant and solar park in Chattanooga.
The carmaker also offered test-drives in its line of eco-friendly cars like the e-Golf, Passat TDI Clean Diesel and Jetta Hybrid. The carmaker also conducted a bird-watching expedition on Volkswagen Chattanooga’s sanctuary grounds.
The XL1, which VW touts as the most fuel-efficient and aerodynamic production car in the world, follows pure sports-car design principles. It is light weight at 1,753 pounds and has exceptional aerodynamics at Cd 0.19, as well as a low center of gravity. The XL1 could also travel at a constant 62 mph while using just 8.4 PS (6.2kW). In all-electric mode, the XL1 needs less than 0.1 kWh to cover more than a kilometer.
The XL1 emits just 21 g/km of carbon dioxide, a number attributed to its high-tech lightweight design, aerodynamic efficiency, and a plug-in hybrid system. Its plug-in hybrid system is made up of a 48 PS (35kW) two-cylinder TDI engine, a 27-hp electric motor, a seven-speed DSG dual-clutch automatic transmission, and a lithium-ion battery.
No production vehicle has yet to surpass the XL1’s estimated European driving cycle of 261 mpg. It also can accelerate from zero to 62 mph in 12.7 seconds and reach a top speed of 99 mph.