Volkswagen’s XL1 Super Efficient Vehicle (SEV), which premiered in concept form at the Qatar Motor Show in January last year, is set to go into small-series production in 2013, presumably as a primary field test.

VW’s CEO Martin Winterkorn said that production will start in two years time in Germany, according to a report by Automotive News Europe. The report added that sources said the plug-in hybrid will be built either in Dresden or Wolfsburg.

The lightweight 795 kg vehicle is an evolution of the 1-Litre car from 2002 and the L1 concept of 2009, and is capable of offering a staggering 110.9 km per litre in fuel consumption on a combined cycle.

It’s powered by an 800 cc TDI two-cylinder common-rail diesel engine offering 47 hp and an electric motor producing 27 hp, and the hybrid powertrain works with a seven-speed DSG gearbox with an automatic clutch mounted between each unit.

The electric motor can either work independently of the TDI engine or in tandem when accelerating – in pure electric mode the XL1 can travel up to 35 km before the diesel engine cuts in. Performance figures for the 3.97 metre-long two-seater include a 0-100 km/h time of 11.9 seconds and an electronically-limited 160 km/h top speed.