VW CEO Martin Winterkorn has confirmed his company is reviving their efforts to produce a 235 MPG car for market. The original program, which began in 2002 and resulted in a 264 mpg vehicle, was scrapped in 2005.
The current prototype will go 400 miles on its 1.7 gallon fuel tank and reach speeds of up to 75 mph.
The VW 1-Liter, developed in a wind tunnel, has a very narrow and very flat body configuration that necessitated tandem seating for the two occupants. Measuring in at 4.1 feet wide, 11.4 feet long, and just over 3 feet tall, the car features an amazing drag coefficient of just 0.159.
Essentially, it’s a two-person automobile, with little more than an engine and a cockpit for driving.
The fuel sipping VW would probably be powered by a tiny single-cylinder diesel engine of 300 cc to 500 cc displacement, made of aluminum, using the latest direct injection technology. The 1-Liter concept car used a single-cylinder 300 cc diesel engine with an aluminum monobloc crankcase and cylinder head, resulting in a total 8.5 horsepower output. The non-turbocharged direct injection engine uses advanced high-pressure unit injection technology. It’s mounted transversely in front of the rear axle and mated to an automated direct shift 6-speed transmission.
Still, a car like this would go over well in Europe and potentially in many cities in America. Can’t say Americans, as a whole, would embrace this for long trips or weekend getaways, but it would be nice to see something like this take root amongst the commuter set.
There’s no timetable for this vehicle and I wouldn’t hold my breath waiting for it at your local VW dealer.