Back in 2011 we posted about this space-agey diesel-electric hybrid concept from Volkswagen dubbed the XL 1. At the time, the XL1 was just a prototype and not strictly “street legal.” However, as reported by Inside Climate News, the auto manufacturer has followed through on its promise to produce a small run of the hyper-efficient two-seaters, and Volkswagen is now selling a limited run of 250 models in Europe.
Most impressively, the car is still reported to get 260 miles per gallon. According to Inside Climate News:
The XL 1’s fuel economy comes partly from its hybrid engine, and partly from its light and aerodynamic design. The car weighs 1,800 pounds, less than half the typical U.S. car. Its tires were slimmed down and its engine was shrunk and turbocharged to get more power. Even the body paint is extra thin. Like most hybrids, the XL 1 is particularly fuel efficient in stop-and-go or city driving, while its diesel engine excels on highways.
There are some performance tradeoffs to achieve this efficiency—the XL1 doesn’t go faster than 99 mph and is slow to reach highway speeds. (Though lead-foot driving isn’t good for fuel economy or safety. )
The XL1 has a hefty price tag of $150,000, even when compared to Tesla’s Model S, which runs upwards of $100,000. Regardless of cost, we won’t see the VW XL1 for sale in the US anytime soon. Guess we’ll have to stick with the regular ol’ Volkswagen TDIs, but with their great fuel economy and more affordable price, we’re not complaining!
Read more about the XL1 limited release.
Posted in Biodiesel, Emissions, News Links, Vehicles
Tagged Biodiesel, biodiesel driver, diesel, diesel hybrid, electric diesel, Green Business, Jetta TDI, plug in diesel hybrid, plug-in hybrid, Volkswagen TDI, VW, vw diesel hybrid, xl1, xl1 hybrid
To our delight, several manufacturers unveiled diesel-electric hybrid models at the Geneva Autoshow, including Volkswagen’s XL1 diesel-powered plug-in hybrid, touted as the “world’s most efficient car.” Reminiscent of a tictac on wheels, the XLI is a spacey, futuristic-styled two-seater claiming a whopping 261 miles per gallon fuel efficiency.
No word on how many of these snazzy little diesel-sippers will go into production or what the price tag might be (rumors suggest over six-figures), but we like the direction VW is headed. For more information, check out autoblog’s report.
Ready for more diesel-electric thrills from Geneva?
Subaru showed off the Viziv diesel hybrid crossover. A concept vehicle that is the poster child for Subaru’s “Vision for Innovation,” the Viziv offers a glimpse into future design and technological direction for the company.
Mitsubishi also brought a diesel-hybrid concept to the spotlight in Geneva: the Concept GR-HEV, a Sport Utility Hybrid Truck. According to Autoblog, “the vehicle’s drivetrain is good for CO2 emissions of 149 grams per kilometer. For comparison’s sake, the global 2012 Ford Ranger emits 264 g/km when equipped with the 3.2-liter turbo-diesel engine and a six-speed manual transmission.” Nice.
Learn more about current diesel vehicle options and cleaner fuels for diesel vehicles at www.propelfuels.com.
Photo Credits — Autoblog.com
Posted in Biodiesel, Emissions, Green Business, Technology, Vehicles
Tagged alternative fuel, Biodiesel, biodiesel driver, concept cars, diesel, diesel hybrid, fuel efficiency, high mpg, hybrid, Jetta TDI, mitsubishi diesel, plug in diesel hybrid, plug-in hybrid, subaru diesel, Volkswagen TDI, VW
This year’s Detroit Autoshow boasted plenty of shiny, drool-worthy vehicles, and, as renewable fuel enthusiasts, a couple in particular caught our eye.
Diesel (!) Jeep Grand Cherokee.
First of all, we love our diesels, especially the re-release on American soil of an old favorite like the Jeep Grand Cherokee. Chrysler’s new EcoDiesel V6 powers this off-roading champ. For all the specs and in-depth details, read Autoblog’s review on the Grand Cherokee’s comprehensive update.
Volkswagen CrossBlue Diesel-Hybrid.
Be still our efficiency-loving hearts! Did you just say DIESEL-HYBRID? Before you get your hopes up too much, for now it’s a concept only. According to Volkswagen, the three-row crossover has an estimated fuel economy of 35 mpg combined and a whopping 89 mpg in electric mode. Get the scoop from Autoblog.
X-Truck Plug-In Hybrid Concept.
It might be hard to tell but the X-Truck is a suped-up, highly-modified Chevy Silverado by Via Motors. The most obvious addition is the plug-in hybrid powertrain, which enables it to get the touted, but still unofficial, 100 miles per gallon. The truck still uses a 5.3-liter V8 from GM as a gas generator–when the battery is in a low state-of-charge, the generator kicks in and helps power up the battery packs. This begs the question: is the V8 Flex Fuel E85 compatible?! We certainly hope so!
Posted in Biodiesel, Flex Fuel E85, Technology, Vehicles
Tagged alternative fuel, Biodiesel, biodiesel driver, biofuel, detroit auto show, diesel, domestic fuel, E85, E85 driver, Flex Fuel, flex fuel vehicle, green car, hybrid, low-carbon fuel, plug in diesel hybrid, plug-in hybrid, Volkswagen TDI, VW
The UW EcoCAR2 Team Receives $25,000 in seed money to kick-off the design of their plug-in hybrid, biodiesel Chevy Malibu.
As part of a program sponsored by the US Department of Energy, a team of students from the University of Washington is engineering a design will convert a conventional 2013 Chevy Malibu into a plug-in hybrid also capable of running on biodiesel.
According to Biodiesel Magazine, the program — titled EcoCAR2 — kicked off in mid-April 2011. Sixteen teams from across the country were selected to participate in the competition, which is co-sponsored by General Motors. According to UW’s EcoCar2 team leader Trevor Crain, the challenge requires that the Malibu (donated by GM) becomes not only a plug-in hybrid but successfully runs on biodiesel B20, E10, E85, hydrogen or grid-sourced electricity.
By choosing biodiesel, the team hopes to convey that diesel engines can be highly efficient and clean — and while Crain’s team of 50+ students would like to fill the car with a high-blend biodiesel, program regulations cap the blend at B20. Propel Fuels, which operates several biodiesel retail locations in the greater Seattle area, will provide the fuel.
Spanning three years total, the EcoCAR2 competition begins with a year-long design phase, after which the vehicle will be delivered for actual modification and conversion.
For more information on the project, visit Biodiesel Magazine, or visit the University of Washington’s project website at www.uwecocar2.com.
Geneva Motor Show – Does the future of clean transportation ride on renewable fuels or electric power? As we at Propel maintain — and as these new beauties, debuted this week at the Geneva Motor Show, demonstrate — the answer can most certainly be both. The diesel hybrid dazzlers featured below can be powered by renewable biodiesel and electricity.
Range Rover Sport Plug-In Diesel Hybrid
While there’s no word yet on whether the Range_e is intended for production, Land Rover has confirmed that this unique offering is part of its 2008 plan to reduce carbon emissions by 25% by 2012. Impressively, the SUV can travel up to 20 miles in full electric mode and returns 88mpg and 88 grams of CO2/kilometer. Power comes from both a 3.0-liter 240-horsepower TDV6 and a 69 kW electric motor that can be recharged from a standard household power supply in <4 hours.
Peugeot 908 Hybrid 4
So it’s not your daily driver. But with its 3.7-liter, 550-horsepower diesel V8 — and an on-board electric motor that uses regenerative braking technology to provide an extra 80-horsepower spurt — Peugeot’s new endurance racer certainly inspires wide appeal. Will it be ready for the 2012 LeMans racing season? If so, Peugeot claims that the clean-burning, hybrid diesel technology will allow the 908 to stay on track longer than the average LeMans vehicle. Less pitting, more winning!
Volvo V60 Plug-In Diesel Hybrid
Who doesn’t love a sports wagon? Better yet, who doesn’t love a good looking safety machine with a diesel engine, a plug-in rechargeable electric powertrain and electric AWD? With the V60 Plug-In Hybrid, Volvo delivers all that, and more. In fact, a press release from the automaker claims the V60 Hybrid to be “three cars in one”:
1) An electric car with a range of up to 32 miles (charging time is 5 or less hours at home)
2) A high-efficiency hybrid with carbon dioxide emissions averaging just 49 g/km
3) A dynamic and engaging car with a combined output of 215 + 70 horsepower, 440 + 200 Nm of torque and acceleration from 0 to 62 mph of just 6.9 seconds
While the standard V60 is available only in European markets, Volvo CEO Stefan Jacoby hinted in January that the V60 Hybrid could make its way to the US. Only time will tell. Until then, we’ll keep our fingers crossed!
Posted in Biodiesel, blog, Technology, Vehicles
Tagged alternative fuel, Biodiesel, biofuel, carbon, clean diesel, diesel, diesel hybrid, diesel range rover, diesel volvo, diesel-electric plug-in hybrid, electric vehicle technology, electric vehicles, geneva auto show, geneva motor show, hybrid, low-carbon fuel, peugeot, Peugeot diesel hybrid, plug in diesel hybrid, plug-in hybrid, range rover, range rover hybrid, renewable fuel, volvo, volvo hybrid
Volvo’s plans are still on track to release a Plug-In Diesel Hybrid in 2012. The hybrid will be based on the V60 wagon and is estimated cut CO2 emission in half when compared to emissions of the popular Toyota Prius.
The lithium-ion battery will charge from a household outlet in about five hours with a range of 30 miles and will also feature regenerative braking for added charging. After the electric-range is reached, the diesel engine takes over.
Read more from TreeHugger.com.
Posted in Biodiesel, Emissions, Green House Gases (GHG), Vehicles
Tagged alternative fuel, biodiesel driver, diesel, diesel hybrid, diesel volvo, hybrid, low-carbon fuel, plug in diesel hybrid, propel, Propel customer