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Ducati-powered VW car on the cards

Panigale motor in electro-hybrid supercar

AUSTRIAN car website AutoRevue.at has revealed that Volkswagen is developing a lightweight sports/racing car using Ducati’s Panigale engine.

The car is based on the firm’s super-expensive XL1 hybrid; an aerodynamic, carbon-fibre, limited-production machine developed for extreme fuel economy. The stocker uses an 800cc twin-cylinder diesel combined with the latest electric hybrid tech to return an incredible 313mpg. Not that you’d think many of the 250 buyers able to fork out the car’s projected €111,000 price will be that concerned about penny-pinching at the pumps.

The Ducati-powered version, which is dubbed XL Sport, is unlikely ever to be sold, but it’s being worked on as a research project, combining the same carbon chassis – which gives the XL1 an all-in weight of just 750kg – and hybrid system with the 190bhp Panigale engine for rather more sprightly performance than the production version can offer.

The new project was announced by VW boss Ferdinand Piech – a billionaire bike nut who reportedly orchestrated VW’s Ducati buyout as a 75th birthday present to himself – during a lecture at the University of Vienna. The idea being that combining the Ducati engine with the electric hybrid system of the XL1 will create a new type of supercar, with performance to beat Ferraris and Lamborghinis but efficiency better than a small hatchback’s.

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