Back in April of 2002, Volkswagen shocked the world when they unveiled the 1 Liter, the world’s first automobile that consumed only 1 liter of diesel fuel per 100 kilometers it travels. Well at this year’s Frankfurt Motor Show, the German automotive conglomerate will take fuel efficiency to the next step in hybrid production car technology by unveiling the L1 hybrid concept. This three wheeled machine weighs in at only 837 pounds and uses only 1.38 liters of diesel fuel for every 100 kilometers. The best part is that if everything goes according to plan, the L1 should become a reality by the year 2013.
The L1 concept is powered by the hybrid combination of a TDI engine and an E-motor. The 0.8 Liter TDI power plant develops a maximum output of 27 HP at 4,000 RPM; while in “Sport” mode, a setting that is used to reach the vehicle’s top speed, power rises all the way up to 39 HP at 4,000 RPM. The hybrid E-motor is supplied with go juice from a lithium ion battery pack that is located at the nose of the L1 for optimum weight distribution while the diesel mill is mated to a 7 speed DSG gearbox.
The concept was constructed with very lightweight and very strong carbon fiber reinforced body (CFRB) using multiple layers of the high strength material laid out in a complex matrix for the upmost in structural rigidity. The two passenger monocoque, including the tubular frames of both the driver’s and passenger’s seat as well as the exterior body skin, all consist of the black wavy stuff. The 1L features no doors, instead the driver and passenger climb into the L1 through the electronically actuated canopy similar to a fighter jet. The 1L has been designed with efficiency in mind at every turn with details like headlights and taillights made with LED technology, in order to consume a lot less energy.