2013 Geneva Motor Show Preview: Vw XL1 revealed in production form

Article by Christian A., on February 21, 2013

Although it seems hard to believe, Volkswagen revealed today the production version of the XL1 a.k.a. the most fuel-efficient production car in the world, with a fuel consumption value of 0.9 l/100 km. Set to make its world debut in March at the 2013 Geneva Motor Show, the new Volkswagen XL1 uses a plug-in hybrid system consisting of a 0.8-liter two-cylinder TDI engine (35 kW / 48 PS), E-motor (20 kW / 27 PS), 7-speed dual clutch gearbox (DSG) and lithium-ion battery. The XL1 is able to sprint from 0 to 100 km/h (62 mph) in 12.7 seconds and has a top speed of 160 km/h (100 mph).

The big surprise is that the Volkswagen XL1 needs only 0.9 liters of fuel per 100 km, a record figure that has not been achieved by any other vehicle to date. Volkswagen XL1 has the ability to cruise on the road at a constant speed of 100 km/h using just 6.2 kW / 8.4 PS.

In all-electric mode, the XL1 requires less than 0.1 kWh to cover a driving distance of over one kilometer. The XL1 is an automotive hero that follows pure sports car design principles: low weight (795 kg), perfect aerodynamics (Cd 0.189) and a low centre of gravity (1,153 mm high).

Moreover, the XL1 emits only 21 g/km of CO2. In electric mode, the XL1 has a maximum range of 50 km. The XL1 is 3,888 mm long, 1,665 mm wide and just 1,153 mm tall. By usual automotive standards these are extreme dimensions.

When it comes visuals, the XL1 Concept makes use of the same styling lines first seen in the L1, first released in 2009. One of the most significant changes is that this latest prototype has greater width resulting in a more dynamic look. Overall the whole body was design to make sure it follows the laws of aerodynamics. While the front section does have exceptional width, the vehicle eventually narrows to the rear section.

Speaking of the rear section, there are lines present that conform to the flow of air that goes above the body. This lowers the aerodynamic drag of the XL1 Concept. Further, the shape looks similar to a dolphin when looked at from the top. Looking at the wings doors of this concept vehicle, it brings to mind a high-end sports car. These doors have been hinged at two points.

The first is just on top of the windscreen that is in the roof frame and the second on the low portion of its A-pillars. Because of this placement, the doors not only swivel in an upward manner but can be moved slightly forward. In addition, the doors are also able to extend far to its roof. Once opened, they allow a large amount of space for ingress and egress. The side profile meanwhile shows a roofline that mirrors styling lines which begin from the A-pillar and draws well to the rear.

Its wheels in the rear have been covered fully to make sure that air turbulence is prevented. Further, the use of small spoilers on both the front and back of the wheels allow the air flow to be optimized. If anything, customers will not be able to see any door mirrors. This is because instead of wing doors, the XL1 Concept makes use of small cameras.

The cameras therefore act as the digital outside mirrors and transmit images of the environment at the back of the car to a pair of display screens on the interior. Observers will look for door mirrors in vain. That’s because replacing them on the wing doors are small cameras which take on the role of digital outside mirrors that send images of the surroundings behind the car to two display screens inside the vehicle.

In terms of dimensions, the XL1 Concept has overall length of 3,888 mm, total width of 1,665 mm, having height at 1,156 mm. Compared to the Polo, the length and width are about the same, measuring 3,970 mm and 1,682 mm, respectively.

The Polo though is taller with height of 1,462 mm. When it comes to the height, the XL1 is probably the same as that of the Lamborghini Gallardo Spyder, which stands at 1,184 mm. Given all of these, it is simple enough to imagine how magnificent the XL1 truly is. It has the width and length of the Polo but the low profile of the Lamborghini.

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