Imagine driving from New York to Los Angeles on a tank of gas.
Volkswagen’s bullet-like L1 concept vehicle could come close to pulling that off. What a senior VW official calls, “a technology driver,” has accomplished the seemingly impossible: going 100 kilometers (62.5 miles) on a single liter of petrol. If you’d prefer to avoid the math, that works out to more than 236 miles per gallon.
The goal of the L1 was to serve as “a spearhead of technical innovation,” according to Dr. Ulrich Hackenberg, the German maker’s technology director, testing out “visionary concepts” that might one day find a role in more conventional vehicles.
“The question we asked ourselves,” said Hackenberg, “is whether we would be able to design a 1-liter car (a vehicle using just 1 liter of fuel to go 100 km) that is also affordable.”