The Volkswagen XL1 is a car for two persons production diesel-powered hybrid produced by Volkswagen. The XL1 car was designed to be able to travel 100 km on 1 litre of diesel fuel. To achieve such economy, it is produced with lightweight materials, a streamlined body and an engine and transmission designed and tuned for economy. The concept car was modified first in 2009 as the L1 and again in 2011 as the XL1.
The Volkswagen XL1 plug-in diesel-electric hybrid is available only in Europe and its 5.5 kWh lithium-ion battery delivers an all-electric range of 50 km (31 mi), has a fuel economy of 0.9 l/100 km and produces emissions of 21 g/km.
The XL1 was released to retail customers in Germany in June 2014.
The prototype VW 1-Litre concept car was shown to the public in April 2002. There are cameras and electronic displays. The engine cooling vents open only as needed.
For light weight, the car uses an unpainted carbon fibre skin over a magnesium-alloy sub-frame. Individual components have been designed to be low weight, including engine, transmission, suspension, wheels, brakes, hubs, bearings, interior, and so on. Empty vehicle weight is 290 kg.
The body and frame are designed with crumple zones and roll-over protection, and the tandem seating means large side crush zones. Volkswagen requires protection comparable to a GT racing car. The car has anti-lock brakes, airbags with pressure sensors, and stability control.
It drives through a six-speed transmission that combines stick-shift mechanics, weight, and drive efficiency with automatic convenience and efficiency controls. There is no clutch pedal. The gear selection is made using a switch on the right-hand side of the cockpit. The engine is switched off automatically during deceleration and stops, and auto-restarted when the acceleration pedal is pressed.
Around June 2008 car magazines were reporting a power station change to a two-cylinder diesel-electric hybrid.