Volkswagen has announced the final retail price of its ultra-efficient XL1 eco car in Germany – an astounding 110,000 euro. That’s as much as a brand new Audi R8 over there! So now we know, that’s the price to pay to achieve an average fuel consumption of just 0.9 litres per 100 km, or 111 km per litre.
It’s obvious that this is no ordinary car. Its only purpose is to be the most fuel efficient vehicle ever made; designed with a single track mind that matches the lunacy of the Bugatti Veyron, itself envisioned and built to be the fastest car ever. So it looks like nothing else on the road, and goes like none other too.
Under the wind-cheating bodywork (with a drag coefficient of only 0.189) lies a tiny plug-in hybrid powertrain combining a 47 hp 800 cc twin-cylinder TDI engine with a 27 hp electric motor. The former is fed by a small 10 litre fuel tank, the latter a 5.5 kWh lithium-ion battery. A seven-speed DSG handles the power transfer.
It’s also very light, tipping the scales at under 800 kg (it uses supercar-like carbon-ceramic brake discs and carbon-fibre anti-roll bars to save weight). Performance is decent, with a 0-100 km/h time of 12.7 seconds and a restricted 162 km/h top speed. All-electric range is up to 50 km, or close to 10 times that with the diesel engine active too.
Only 200 units of the Volkswagen XL1 will be made; each one hand built from carbon-fibre reinforced plastic in Osnabrück, Germany. All 200 will have its steering wheel on the wrong side: left.
Also confirmed for development (but not production, yet) is a higher-powered Volkswagen XL Sport, which will have a 1.2 litre Ducati engine with around 190 hp and 124 Nm or torque. A similar sub-800 kg weight is targeted, so it’ll be a scorcher. God knows how much that will cost.