A German paper managed to get a scoop on a rather interesting concept car that Volkswagen plans to show at the Frankfurt show that’ll open in just a few days time. This concept car is supposedly called the Volkswagen L1 Concept and guess what its rated fuel consumption is – 1.49 litres per 100km! Most people are calling it a 1 litre car, which it actually is not, but nevertheless a “1.49 litre car” is still impressive.

It’s a small 3,800mm long two seater car and you sit in it in tandem – which means the driver at the front and the passenger behind him or her. The L1 Concept is powered by a twin-cylinder diesel engine mated to a 7-speed twin clutch transmission. It’s only got 29 horsepower but at a kerb weight of 380kg, that’s more than enough. CO2 output is rated at just 39g/km.

UPDATE: We now know more information about the new L1. The official fuel consumption has been rated at 1.38 litres per 100km. The 800cc two-cylinder diesel engine is essentially half of Volkswagen’s BlueMotion 1.6 TDI engine and it makes 27 PS (39 PS in “sports mode”) and 100Nm of torque at 1,900rpm, but is assisted by a 14 hosepower electric motor powered by a lithium ion battery situated at the front of the car. The hybrid unit sends power to the wheels via a 7-speed DSG transmission.

The electric motor sits between the TDI engine and the DSG gearbox. This sounds like a motor assist system but the motor is capable of running on its own as a zero emissions EV with the TDI shut off via decoupling from the TDI with an auxiliary clutch. When its time for the TDI unit to be restarted, this electric motor acts as a start-up generator.

To retain the L1’s aerodynamic shape, door mirrors have been eliminated. While they’re at it, they also took out the rear view mirror though since it is inside the car it doesn’t improve aerodynamics. Instead, functions of both the door and rear view mirrors have been replaced by cameras which send images to OLED displays on the left and right of the instrument panel. There are no doors – the passengers get in from the top.

The L1 is built around a safety cell made out of carbon fiber reinforced plastic, which itself weighs only 124kg. If you add everything else in, the L1 tops out at 380kg kerb weight, which is pretty damn light. The weight is well acounting for – 122kg goes to teh drivetrain, 79kg for the chassis, 35kg for the interior furnishings, and 20kg for the electricals. The L1 measures 1,200mm wide, 3,813mm long and 1,143mm tall, which Volkswagen says is similiar to the length of a Volkswagen Fox and the height of a Lamborghini Murcielago.

Look after the jump for more shots of the L1.

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