by Jesse and Amanda with Pike in the morning,posted Mar 12 2013 9:30AM
Gas prices solved! At 261 miles PER GALLON, new Volkswagen XL1 plug-in hybrid is the world’s most efficient car
Volkswagen will launch production version of its most exotic vehicle ever, the two-seater XL1 plug-in hybrid that debuted at the Geneva Motor Show. With a fuel efficiency rating of 261 mpg and exotic styling, the XL1 is both the world’s most efficient production car and the world’s most aerodynamic production car. The first batch of 250 XL1s will be on sale later this year. Currently, the average gallon of unleaded goes for $3.74 in the United States and if that gallon stretches greater than 35 miles, it’s a bonus. But the technology behind the XL1 plug-in hybrid could change that entirely. It has five times the mileage of the Toyota Prius, but unlike the jellybean-shaped Prius, the revolutionary XL1 is a stylish, two-seat roadster that could be mistaken for a prop from a science fiction movie. From its Lamborghini-style gullwing doors to its futuristic side-view cameras, the XL1 is not just another fuel-efficient car: it’s a modern design piece that manages to travel hundreds of miles on a single gallon of diesel. But this tight two-seater doesn’t roar away from the lights — despite being hailed as a supercar. In fact the Prius is comparatively rocket-like compared to the VW’s acceleration of 0 to 62 mph in 12.7 seconds. Top speed will be 99mph. And the price to anyone other than a super-rich collector is out of this world. It will cost around $130,000. The thing is that this is all about the use of technology for the future, not about mas sales now. The design is a lesson in squeezing out efficiency from every last corner. The skin uses light weight, ultra-strong carbon fiber that weighs half as much as steel, helping get its weight to less than 1,800 pounds. Covered rear wheels and side-view cameras might make for a futuristic driving experience, but in reality they’re there to cut down on wind resistance. The XL1 offers a drag coefficient of just 0.19 and boasts the title of the world’s most aerodynamic production car. The XL1 runs a 47-horsepower two-cylinder diesel engine with a capacity of just 2.64 gallons in tandem with a 27-horsepower electric motor powered by a lithium-ion battery capable of running for 32 miles on its own. The XL1 is 153.1 inches long, 65.6 in wide, and just 45.4 in tall. By comparison, a Volkswagen Polo is slightly longer (156.3 in) and wider (66.2 in), but is significantly taller (57.6 in). Even a purebred sports car like today’s Porsche Boxster is 5.1 inches taller. The XL1 will look spectacular going down the highway—a car of the future, built for today.