Thursday, October 2, 2014
Volkswagen XL Sport Concept Features Ducati Motorcycle Power
Can a vehicle travel at a top speed of 168 miles per hour, achieve 0 to 100 kilometer per hour acceleration times in just 5.7 seconds from the momentum of two cylinders? The Volkswagen XL Sport concept car presenting itself to the world for the first time in Paris this month boasts those exact impressive performance numbers from a high-revving motorcycle engine.
Think of the Volkswagen XL Sport as a motorcycle with four wheels and a full car body. The concept vehicle was derived from the limited production Volkswagen XL1 plug-in hybrid. On the surface, the XL Sport fits all the criteria to be called a supercar. Radical exterior sculpting of the Volkswagen XL Sport concept results in a 0.258 drag coefficient. Lamborghini's active aerodynamic features including an extendable rear spoiler and adaptive air vents augments the vehicle to achieve an optimum level of downforce. Extensive carbon fiber construction, LED lighting and 18-inch forged magnesium wheels are also characteristics shaping the XL Sport concept design.
The concept vehicle is based on the Volkswagen XL1 plug-in hybrid. A car itself based on a far-out idea car from 2011 that combined electric power with a tiny one-liter turbocharged diesel engine. Defying the thoughts of many, Volkswagen began producing a small run of 250 street-going versions of the XL1. The XL Sport is longer and wider than the XL1 in order to more positively invoke the sense of athletic performance. Wing doors of the Volkswagen XL1 remain intact with fixed polycarbonate windows for decreased weight.
Powering the XL Sport, the concept car relies solely on a 1,199 cc V-twin engine. This engine is from no other than the Ducati 1199 Superleggera motorcycle. the most powerful two-cylinder motorcycle on a production motorcycle, the 1,199 cc V-twin generates 197 horsepower and can roar up to 11,000 rpms. In 2012, Ducati was integrated with the Volkswagen Group (VW Group) of companies. Officially purchased by VW Group subsidiary Audi, the Italian motorcycle manufacturer has kept true to its image prior to Audi's purchase of the company. The Ducati 1199 Superleggera motorcycle production is a premier superbike with only 500 to be built.
While a motorcycle engine powering an actual car is not the norm in the current global vehicle market, there have been a number of production vehicles that have been propelled through this type of powerplant. Several early Honda vehicles such as the S500 sports car as well as the N360 city car were powered by their company's own motorcycle engines. In Formula 1 during the late 1950s, the innovation Cooper race cars that eventually led to the extinction of front-engined grand prix and Indy-style cars originally started with building vehicle using motorcycle engines as the basis.
The Volkswagen XL Sport will be one of many interesting concepts to be previewed ahead for week's opening of the Paris Motor Show.
Information and photo source: Volkwagen AG