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Volkswagen Concept Car Averages 262 MPG 353

coolnumbr12 writes "The Volkswagen XL1 averages an amazing 262 mpg, and although it may never hit streets in the United States, the technology behind the car could impact future Volkswagen vehicles. The keys to the incredible mileage in the Volkswagen XL1 were reducing the weight of the vehicle and eliminating wind resistance. The XL1 only weighs 1,753 pounds — that's more than a thousand pounds lighter than the Toyota Prius, which weighs in at 2,921 pounds. The wheels on the Volkswagen XL1 are as thin as road bike's and wrapped in custom Michelin rubber. The XL1 chassis is a single piece of molded carbon-fiber, and has a drag coefficient of only 0.189 – similar to a bumblebee."
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Volkswagen Concept Car Averages 262 MPG

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  • by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday July 09, 2013 @07:32PM (#44232171)

    A mile is 8 furlongs and a gallon is 8 pints. So this car can do 262 furlongs per pint. That's quite an achievement considering it's mass is 125 stones.

  • by ldobehardcore ( 1738858 ) <steven,dubois&gmail,com> on Tuesday July 09, 2013 @08:02PM (#44232489)

    My car gets 40 rods to the hogshead and that's the way I likes it. -Abe Simpson

  • by Dcnjoe60 ( 682885 ) on Tuesday July 09, 2013 @08:26PM (#44232741)

    Given the drag coefficient, I assume this car exhibits Laminar flow. This can get disrupted by external factors (say getting passed by a buss) and result in localized turbulent flow. This would drastically increase the drag on one part of the car, causing a sudden unexpected side load, likely causing a turn (into the passing bus). An airplane bouncing around is not much of an issue, but when your car moves over 6 feet sideways on the freeway unexpectedly, it can be rather bad.

    Generally maximally aerodynamic cars are not safe. They may not have gotten to that point, or may have cleverly worked around the issues, but given the lack of side mirrors, I think mileage was the priority over safety here. Its a neat technical feet, but as mentioned in the article, its dangerous in multiple respects.

    I drive a 1972 VW beetle as a daily driver. You get used to your car moving over 6 feet sideways on the freeway unexpectedly and come to anticipate it. Before long it is just like operating a clutch, you just don't think about it. :)

  • by GigaplexNZ ( 1233886 ) on Tuesday July 09, 2013 @09:48PM (#44233395)

    We use that conversion here (New Zealand) and it makes a whole lot more sense since I can see precisely how much less fuel this will use compared with my current car which gets around 9L/100Km. Basically, this goes 10x further per gallon than a typical family wagon.

    So... it makes more sense to use L/100k, and then you go and talk about distance per gallon? Please hand in your kiwi card on your way out.

  • by Cosgrach ( 1737088 ) on Tuesday July 09, 2013 @10:53PM (#44233805)

    Over the years, I have driven pretty much all types - rear wheel (VW's mostly), front wheel, all wheel (Subaru - Oh yeah!), and 4-wheel. (Yes, there is a difference).

    The FJ40 is very much like the Volkwagons, excepting that they are way top heavy. It's a HEAVY 4WD for its size (over 4,000 lbs), and a relatively light rear end. It has a habit of breaking loose on wet roads in the turns (much like my '69 VW Camper. Have to be pretty careful. My 2004 Subaru Forester simply could not give a damn about the road conditions - it was just completely predictable (after I disabled the anti-lock break system). My old '69 VW Square Back was very predictable and drifted like a freaking dream. Believe it or not, it out handled many of the heavier American muscle cars. Not all that fast (top speed of about 100mph), but on mountain roads it was freaking awesome.

    It's all old school for me now.

    The golden rules:
    Know your limits
    Know your vehicles performance limits
    Know your vehicles foot print on the pavement.

  • by semi-extrinsic ( 1997002 ) <asmunder.stud@ntnu@no> on Wednesday July 10, 2013 @02:43AM (#44234911)

    massive rubber on it.

    I've always suspected BMW drivers use their cars as penis extenders, but this takes "safety" to a whole new level...

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