Frankfurt Preview: Volkswagen 1-liter concept, 158 mpg (US) tandem 2-seater
Ono of the numerous cars that will be shown by Volkswagen this week at the Frankfurt Motor Show is the latest edition of the 1-liter concept. The name represents the amount of fuel it takes the vehicle to travel 100 km (62 miles) and nominally equates to 235 mpg. In this case, based on the translation, it appears that VW might be taking some liberties with the name since it seems to take 1.49 liters / 100 km, or a mere 157.8 mpg (US). For all practical purposes, the difference is largely inconsequential since so little fuel is used at these lofty levels.
The original 1-liter concept appeared in 2002 and was enormously expensive since it was largely made of one-off unobtanium. This time around, VW used more conventional components and materials to create the tandem two-seater. A 36-horsepower two-cylinder diesel propels it along with some indeterminate degree of hybridization through a 7-speed DSG gearbox. Weight is cut to about 1,100 pounds through extensive use of carbon fiber composites, and the tandem layout helps cut frontal area to a minimum, reducing drag. In the past, VW has said it would like to have a 1-liter car in production by 2010, but we don't know the current status of those plans yet. Thanks to Paul for the tip!
[Source: Bild am Sonntag]