Minimalist Mobility: Volkswagen Unveils the Nils

At the 2011 Frankfurt Motor Show Volkswagen (VW) will unveil their single seater fully electric concept car called the Nils.

The VW Nils is a driver only electric vehicle, manning that the Nils has only one seat. This single seat design allows the Nils to measure less than 10 feet long, 120 inches to be exact. The body of the Nils is made of aluminum panels, the frame is aluminum, and the doors are a polycarbonate wing design. The total weight of the Nils, without having a person in the driver’s seat, is just over 1,000 pounds.

VW development boss Ulrich Hackenberg said, “Nils anticipates the future. The goal of the Nils project is to research a technically concrete and economically feasible vehicle concept for micromobility which restructures individual transportation to make it more efficient and environmentally compatible based on electric drive technology.” The Nils is also like previous VW 1-liter vehicle concepts that reflects utility and efficiency over everything else. One such concept was capable of an amazing 285 MPG.

The Nils has a top speed of 80 mph with acceleration from 0-60 in about 11 seconds. The Nils sports a compact electric engine that weighs 42 pounds and puts out up to 33 horsepower.  Being a fully electric vehicle, the Nils has an electric battery range of about 40 miles and runs off a 5.3 kWh lithium ion battery pack. VW says the batteries can be recharged from empty to full in two hours.

Inside the single seater cockpit the Nils has a 7 inch TFT display with a digital instrument cluster and as a portable infotainment device which controls navigation, radio, phone and Internet.

Americans often travel long distances to work or to the store and by no means is VW targeting the Nils at American soccer moms. If fact, the concept car that is the Nils is not really designed with Americans in mind. The Nils project is supported by the German Federal Ministry of Transport, Building and Urban Development. VW says the Nils would be “the ideal vehicle for the majority of commuters in Germany,” many of whom travel 15 miles or less to work each day and often travel alone.

The 2011 Frankfurt Motor Show kicks off in Germany in mid September.

Source: Volkswagen

Andrew Meggison was born in the state of Maine and educated in Massachusetts. Andrew earned a Bachelor’s Degree in Government and International Relations from Clark University and a Master’s Degree in Political Science from Northeastern University. Being an Eagle Scout, Andrew has a passion for all things environmental. In his free time Andrew enjoys writing, exploring the great outdoors, a good film, and a creative cocktail.

 

 

Andrew Meggison

Andrew Meggison was born in the state of Maine and educated in Massachusetts. Andrew earned a Bachelor's Degree in Government and International Relations from Clark University and a Master's Degree in Political Science from Northeastern University. In his free time Andrew enjoys writing, exploring the great outdoors, a good film, and a creative cocktail. You can follow Andrew on Twitter @AndrewMeggison