Rumormill: Volkswagen to Fit Radical XL1 Plug-In Hybrid Setup into Affordable Up! City Car

FEB 25 2013 BY ERIC LOVEDAY 4

According to rumors floating around the Internet, Volkswagen will reportedly fit the 261 -MPGe plug-in hybrid powertrain from the limited production (translation: uber expensive) XL1 into its cute and extremely affordable Up!

VW XL1 Powertrain

VW XL1 Powertrain

Here’s a brief refresher on the radical XL1, which is indeed production bound: The XL1 is powered by a two-cylinder (800 cc), 47-horsepower, TDI (turbo diesel) engine and supplemented by a 27-hp electric motor and 5.5-kWh lithium-ion battery pack.  It tips the scales at en estimated 1,753 pounds, boasts an electric-only range of 31 miles and we expect it to be priced well beyond the reach of most.

VW XL1

VW XL1

But that’s why the plug-in hybrid Up! has us geeked.  There’s no way an Up! would be expensive, even if fitted with a radical plug-in hybrid setup. And it’s still light enough (estimated at 2,200 pounds in plug-in hybrid trim) to return spectacular fuel economy.  Apparently, VW says a plug-in hybrid Up! would be good for 250 MPGe on the NEDC test cycle.

Sources say the Up! plug-in hybrid would return the highest fuel economy rating of any vehicle, aside from the XL1.  VW supposedly hints at 90 mpg under ideal conditions and suggests that its electric-only range will be somewhere in the neighborhood of 30 miles.

It’s not clear if this rumored Up! plug-in hybrid will ever make it to the States, but sources do say it will enter the production cycle in 18-ish months.  Pricing is unknown, but it’s an Up!, so it would be an utter failure if expensive.   Up! is a bare bones urban runabout.  Not a radical vehicle like the XL1.

 

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4 Comments on "Rumormill: Volkswagen to Fit Radical XL1 Plug-In Hybrid Setup into Affordable Up! City Car"

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Affordable doesn’t always translate to desirable. And 30 miles range will probably wind up being 15 by the time it goes through testing.

Imperial Gallons, European MPG test projections, non-US diesel emissions, and a EV market soon to be flooded with sub-compact offerings will likely prevent that car from ever making it across the pond.

to many people affordable means very desirable!

Well, the i-Miev has always been more affordable than the Leaf. But you haven’t seen them selling better.