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Thread: Obama Wants Research to Wean Vehicles off Oil.....

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    Re: Obama Wants Research to Wean Vehicles off Oil.....

    Quote Originally Posted by cannuck View Post
    Here is my favourite front runner for diesel (although this IS a diesel hybrid) commuter. Note: it will be produced this year, but I can guarantee you it will never be sold in North America. Volkswagen 1-litre car - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
    I just read where VW is going into production with the 1 litre car, in China!
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    Re: Obama Wants Research to Wean Vehicles off Oil.....

    Quote Originally Posted by Catawba View Post
    I just read where VW is going into production with the 1 litre car, in China!
    Would appreciate if you have a link. I can see that, as the car will be very techno and labour intensive - well suited to Chinese production - where, of course, VW have been established long before ANYONE else was there. In other words, they can reasonably expect to control the whole process to a high standard - which would be required as this will be the ultimate halo car for efficiency freaks like me.

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    Re: Obama Wants Research to Wean Vehicles off Oil.....

    Quote Originally Posted by cannuck View Post
    Would appreciate if you have a link. I can see that, as the car will be very techno and labour intensive - well suited to Chinese production - where, of course, VW have been established long before ANYONE else was there. In other words, they can reasonably expect to control the whole process to a high standard - which would be required as this will be the ultimate halo car for efficiency freaks like me.

    Move Over Smart Car - China's $600.00 - 258 MPG VW

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    Re: Obama Wants Research to Wean Vehicles off Oil.....

    Quote Originally Posted by Catawba View Post
    [URL="http://moneytalks.net/topics/personal-finance-and-real-estate/8105-move-over-smart-car-chinas-600-volkswagen.html"]Move Over Smart Car - China's $600.00 - 258 MPG VW
    Cool, but NOT the hybrid that will be sold in Europe. The car you posted is very similar to the original 2009 concept, but the one released for production is a side by side, as below. Sorry, the picture did not copy over, but here is the text:

    Volkswagen AG is planning to roll out a production car that will combine a plug-in hybrid powertrain with low weight and aerodynamic shape to reportedly achieve a startling fuel efficiency rating of 261 miles per gallon (mpg).

    Although the mileage numbers will almost certainly drop when a US EPA rating is applied, the XL1, as it’s known, will likely be the most fuel efficient production car in the world. Today‘s best vehicles -- the Honda Fit EV, Scion IQ EV, Mitsubishi i-MiEV, and Ford Focus Electric, among others -- typically have mpg-equivalencies that are less than half that of the proposed VW.

    ”This vehicle combines every possible way of improving fuel efficiency,” Volkswagen spokesman Mark Gillies told Design News. “It uses aerodynamics, low-rolling resistance, low weight, and a plug-in hybrid powertrain.”

    Click on the image below to get an up-close look at the XL1.


    The XL1 follows sports car design principles -- low weight, low drag, and a low center of gravity. Its winged doors are made from carbon fiber-reinforced plastic.
    (Source: Volkswagen AG)
    Indeed, in the years of development work that went into the new VW XL1, the company’s engineers incorporated virtually every available fuel efficiency feature. The new vehicle supplies just enough power to make itself road-worthy, while incorporating enough low-mass components to keep its energy needs low. A 47-HP turbo-diesel engine, for example, sips fuel, while a 27-HP electric motor gives it a enough pop to hit a top speed of 99 mph.

    The key to its road-worthiness is its low weight. At 1,753 pounds, it’s less than half of the Chevy Volt’s 3,781 pounds, thanks to liberal use of lightweight materials. Approximately 20 percent of the vehicle employs carbon fiber-reinforced plastic, including the monocoque, body panels, anti-roll bars, and numerous other parts. The brakes also use carbon fiber ceramics, while the engine crankcase, steering gear housing, dampers, and other suspension components are made from aluminum. Even the XL1’s windows were designed with weight reduction in mind, all of them being made from polycarbonate.

    VW’s new vehicle may also offer the lowest drag coefficient in production car history. At 0.189, it’s lower than the Toyota Prius (0.25), Tesla Model S (0.24), Mercedes-Benz CLA-Class (0.23), and General Motors’ EV1 (0.195). It accomplishes that with a tadpole-like shape that’s wider at the front than the rear.

    Narrow tires also help, as do fairings and air vortex generators that prevent airstreams from getting caught around the wheel housings. Side mirrors are gone, as well -- the XL1 will use cameras instead. Finally, the vehicle is so thin (1,665 mm) that it calls for the seats to be offset. ”We couldn’t put the seats side by side,” Gillies told us, “so we did it by putting one of them slightly behind the other.”

    The real test of the vehicle’s efficiency, however, may lie in its all-electric performance. Using a 5.5-kWh water-cooled, lithium-ion battery, the XL1 can travel 32 all-electric miles, meaning it gets close to six miles to the kilowatt-hour. That’s almost twice that of the Volt or Leaf.

    All of the fuel efficiency ratings will be up for debate, of course, as the vehicle’s limited rollout nears. The XL1’s 261-mpg figures are based on European Commission methodology, which calls for the vehicle to travel 100 km, using its all-electric mode, followed by a diesel fuel mode.

    US EPA test cycles, however, are notoriously tougher. General Motors notably proclaimed a 230-mpg efficiency for the Volt and Nissan said its Leaf would get 367 mpg in 2009, before EPA test cycles put both vehicles closer to 100 mpg-e when they were launched in 2010.

    Volkswagen isn’t talking price yet, but is saying that production will be light and will start soon. The German automaker is already retooling a plant in Osnabruch, Germany, to build the XL1 in “a limited production run.” Unofficially, VW officials have talked about manufacturing only 250 vehicles, but the number could climb into the low thousands. ”What we can say is that it’s going to be in peoples’ hands fairly soon,” Gillies told us.

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    Re: Obama Wants Research to Wean Vehicles off Oil.....

    Quote Originally Posted by cannuck View Post
    Cool, but NOT the hybrid that will be sold in Europe. The car you posted is very similar to the original 2009 concept, but the one released for production is a side by side, as below. Sorry, the picture did not copy over, but here is the text:

    Volkswagen AG is planning to roll out a production car that will combine a plug-in hybrid powertrain with low weight and aerodynamic shape to reportedly achieve a startling fuel efficiency rating of 261 miles per gallon (mpg).

    Although the mileage numbers will almost certainly drop when a US EPA rating is applied, the XL1, as it’s known, will likely be the most fuel efficient production car in the world. Today‘s best vehicles -- the Honda Fit EV, Scion IQ EV, Mitsubishi i-MiEV, and Ford Focus Electric, among others -- typically have mpg-equivalencies that are less than half that of the proposed VW.

    ”This vehicle combines every possible way of improving fuel efficiency,” Volkswagen spokesman Mark Gillies told Design News. “It uses aerodynamics, low-rolling resistance, low weight, and a plug-in hybrid powertrain.”

    Click on the image below to get an up-close look at the XL1.


    The XL1 follows sports car design principles -- low weight, low drag, and a low center of gravity. Its winged doors are made from carbon fiber-reinforced plastic.
    (Source: Volkswagen AG)
    Indeed, in the years of development work that went into the new VW XL1, the company’s engineers incorporated virtually every available fuel efficiency feature. The new vehicle supplies just enough power to make itself road-worthy, while incorporating enough low-mass components to keep its energy needs low. A 47-HP turbo-diesel engine, for example, sips fuel, while a 27-HP electric motor gives it a enough pop to hit a top speed of 99 mph.

    The key to its road-worthiness is its low weight. At 1,753 pounds, it’s less than half of the Chevy Volt’s 3,781 pounds, thanks to liberal use of lightweight materials. Approximately 20 percent of the vehicle employs carbon fiber-reinforced plastic, including the monocoque, body panels, anti-roll bars, and numerous other parts. The brakes also use carbon fiber ceramics, while the engine crankcase, steering gear housing, dampers, and other suspension components are made from aluminum. Even the XL1’s windows were designed with weight reduction in mind, all of them being made from polycarbonate.

    VW’s new vehicle may also offer the lowest drag coefficient in production car history. At 0.189, it’s lower than the Toyota Prius (0.25), Tesla Model S (0.24), Mercedes-Benz CLA-Class (0.23), and General Motors’ EV1 (0.195). It accomplishes that with a tadpole-like shape that’s wider at the front than the rear.

    Narrow tires also help, as do fairings and air vortex generators that prevent airstreams from getting caught around the wheel housings. Side mirrors are gone, as well -- the XL1 will use cameras instead. Finally, the vehicle is so thin (1,665 mm) that it calls for the seats to be offset. ”We couldn’t put the seats side by side,” Gillies told us, “so we did it by putting one of them slightly behind the other.”

    The real test of the vehicle’s efficiency, however, may lie in its all-electric performance. Using a 5.5-kWh water-cooled, lithium-ion battery, the XL1 can travel 32 all-electric miles, meaning it gets close to six miles to the kilowatt-hour. That’s almost twice that of the Volt or Leaf.

    All of the fuel efficiency ratings will be up for debate, of course, as the vehicle’s limited rollout nears. The XL1’s 261-mpg figures are based on European Commission methodology, which calls for the vehicle to travel 100 km, using its all-electric mode, followed by a diesel fuel mode.

    US EPA test cycles, however, are notoriously tougher. General Motors notably proclaimed a 230-mpg efficiency for the Volt and Nissan said its Leaf would get 367 mpg in 2009, before EPA test cycles put both vehicles closer to 100 mpg-e when they were launched in 2010.

    Volkswagen isn’t talking price yet, but is saying that production will be light and will start soon. The German automaker is already retooling a plant in Osnabruch, Germany, to build the XL1 in “a limited production run.” Unofficially, VW officials have talked about manufacturing only 250 vehicles, but the number could climb into the low thousands. ”What we can say is that it’s going to be in peoples’ hands fairly soon,” Gillies told us.
    Cool!
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    Re: Obama Wants Research to Wean Vehicles off Oil.....

    Quote Originally Posted by Catawba View Post
    Cool!
    What I love/hate about this is that my second car was a Karmann Ghia (which is what was built in the Osnabruk plant in the 50s and 60s). What I hate is that it is something I doubt I will be able to buy here - ever (shouldn't say that, I can import it into Canada after 15 years - as is the case for some of the VWs I have now).

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    Re: Obama Wants Research to Wean Vehicles off Oil.....

    Quote Originally Posted by cannuck View Post
    What I love/hate about this is that my second car was a Karmann Ghia (which is what was built in the Osnabruk plant in the 50s and 60s). What I hate is that it is something I doubt I will be able to buy here - ever (shouldn't say that, I can import it into Canada after 15 years - as is the case for some of the VWs I have now).
    My first car was a VW Beetle, and I've owned 9 VWs since then. VW has been a leader in efficient design from the very beginning. Since the Beetle made it to the US, I'm guessing this car will too if it turns out to be as innovative as the Beetle was when it came out. I am also very excited about the all electric vehicles that are coming down the pike. Cutting back on fuel usage is good, the wife and I have been doing it with hybrids since 2000. But I look forward to never having to stop at a gas pump again!
    Treat the earth well: it was not given to you by your parents, it was loaned to you by your children. We do not inherit the Earth from our Ancestors, we borrow it from our Children. ~ Ancient American Indian Proverb

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    Re: Obama Wants Research to Wean Vehicles off Oil.....

    Quote Originally Posted by Catawba View Post
    My first car was a VW Beetle, and I've owned 9 VWs since then. VW has been a leader in efficient design from the very beginning. Since the Beetle made it to the US, I'm guessing this car will too if it turns out to be as innovative as the Beetle was when it came out. I am also very excited about the all electric vehicles that are coming down the pike. Cutting back on fuel usage is good, the wife and I have been doing it with hybrids since 2000. But I look forward to never having to stop at a gas pump again!
    Yeah, my first car was ALSO a beetle (1962 in 1968), and my Ghia was a 1965 (in 1970). Fixing and modifying them lead to me becoming a hobby mechanic, then VW dealer mechanic, eventually becoming GM and dealer principal - so I am more than a little biased towards the VW/Audi/Porsche way of doing things. You are right, they have been very much in the forefront of a lot of automotive innovation - and have paid the price a few times. As one of my old friends (my mentor in the machine shop business) used to say: "you can always tell the pioneers by the arrows in their back".

    I am a little less excited by the pure EVs because I am not yet seeing the kind of "commodity car" that needs to be there to make big dents in the urban commuter market. Nor do I see the move to demand billing to force off-peak charging (which means IMHO enough range for full day - to eliminate downtown charging). Until then, there are some really good things coming down the pike in both pure diesel and diesel hybrid.

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    Re: Obama Wants Research to Wean Vehicles off Oil.....

    Which is not only ugly, but useless. It seats one person. It carries nothing. How stupid.
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    Re: Obama Wants Research to Wean Vehicles off Oil.....

    Quote Originally Posted by cannuck View Post
    Yeah, my first car was ALSO a beetle (1962 in 1968), and my Ghia was a 1965 (in 1970). Fixing and modifying them lead to me becoming a hobby mechanic, then VW dealer mechanic, eventually becoming GM and dealer principal - so I am more than a little biased towards the VW/Audi/Porsche way of doing things. You are right, they have been very much in the forefront of a lot of automotive innovation - and have paid the price a few times. As one of my old friends (my mentor in the machine shop business) used to say: "you can always tell the pioneers by the arrows in their back".

    I am a little less excited by the pure EVs because I am not yet seeing the kind of "commodity car" that needs to be there to make big dents in the urban commuter market. Nor do I see the move to demand billing to force off-peak charging (which means IMHO enough range for full day - to eliminate downtown charging). Until then, there are some really good things coming down the pike in both pure diesel and diesel hybrid.

    You are right that all of those are better options than gas burners! But I like the zero CO2 emissions of the electric cars, and the fact they don't burn a byproduct of middle east oil. Depending on the advances in batteries made through research, in addition to the solar charging, I feel they have more promise for the future than a car that is dependent on a fuel with an ever increasing cost that still damages the environment, if less than burning gasoline. But I think the diesels and diesel hybrids are a great transition from gas burners to electric cars.
    Treat the earth well: it was not given to you by your parents, it was loaned to you by your children. We do not inherit the Earth from our Ancestors, we borrow it from our Children. ~ Ancient American Indian Proverb

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