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joey
31 May 07,, 20:18
Air-Car Ready for Mass Production

By Bob Ewing

The world's first commercial compressed air-powered vehicle is rolling towards the production line. The Air Car, developed by ex-Formula One engineer Guy Nègre, will be built by India's largest automaker, Tata Motors.

The Air Car uses compressed air to push its engine's pistons. It is anticipated that approximately 6000 Air Cars will be cruising the streets of India by 2008. If the manufacturers have no surprises up their exhaust pipes the car will be practical and reasonably priced. The CityCat model will clock out at 68 mph with a driving range of 125 miles.

Refueling is simple and will only take a few minutes. That is, if you live nearby a gas station with custom air compressor units. The cost of a fill up is approximately $2.00. If a driver doesn't have access to a compressor station, they will be able to plug into the electrical grid and use the car's built-in compressor to refill the tank in about 4 hours.

The compressed air technology is basically just a way of storing electrical energy without the need for costly, heavy, and occasionally toxic batteries. So, in a sense, this is an electric car. It just doesn't have an electric motor.

But don't let anyone tell you this is an "emissions free" vehicle. Sure, the only thing coming out of the tailpipe is air. But, chances are, fossil fuels were burned to create the electricity. In India, that mostly means coal. But the carbon emissions per mile of these things still far outdoes any gasoline car on the market.


Unfortunately, the streets of North America may never see the Air Car, though; it's light-weight, glued-together fiberglass construction might not do so well in our crash tests. However, that does not mean the Air car is confined to the sub-continent. Nègre has signed deals to bring its design to 12 more countries, including Germany, Israel and South Africa.

And this isn't the last we'll hear of the technology. The folks making the Air Car are already working on a hybrid version that would use an on-board, gasoline-powered compressor to refill the air tanks when they run low. Negre says that technology could easily squeeze a cross country trip out of one tank of gasoline.


A variety of videos (of varying quality) on this technology can be found on YouTube, or after the jump.

Via: Popular Mechanics

http://green.yahoo.com/index.php?q=node/315

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I hope we put more stress into environment like this.

glyn
31 May 07,, 21:37
Sounds interesting to me. I will watch its progress with great interest.

Kernow
02 Jul 07,, 05:30
The CityCAT's made of lightweight, glued-together fiberglass and foam, and the engine is made up almost entirely of aluminum. The air tanks hold 52 gallons of compressed air at 4,351psi, and refueling can take only three minutes at your local gas station. You can also plug in the vehicle for about four hours, so the on-board compressor can fill the tanks at a cost of about $2. Initial plans call for Tata Motors to produce about 6,000 of these air-powered transportation devices for the India market, but 12 other countries including Germany, Isreal, and South Africa have signed deals with MDI to buy their own air-cars.

The CityCAT has almost no chance of ever gracing the streets of the good 'ol USA, mostly because of the obvious crash-test issues that come from a car that's made of fiberglass and foam. As is typically the case with green cars, more information is available on Autoblog Green. Hit the jump to see a couple of very informative videos on how the CityCAT runs on good old-fashioned air. Check out the sound of these little babies in motion, as they sound like a giant compressor.

Not for me I'm afraid. Not very eco friendly when it comes to refuelling the little Roller Skate.

crooks
02 Jul 07,, 14:29
I'd love one of these.........the cost of fuel is crazy, though I hear we're still cheaper than the UK, how much per litre do you guys pay?

glyn
02 Jul 07,, 15:18
I'd love one of these.........the cost of fuel is crazy, though I hear we're still cheaper than the UK, how much per litre do you guys pay?

Certain areas are cheaper than others, but say on average somewhere between 95 and 99 pence a gallon.

omon
02 Jul 07,, 15:30
saw a tv program about this car yesterday, would be a very usefull transportation as long as you stay away from highways

crooks
02 Jul 07,, 16:00
Certain areas are cheaper than others, but say on average somewhere between 95 and 99 pence a gallon.

So about 1.50 (euro).

It's roughly 1.10 to 1.15 here.....I'm sure we buy from the same companies and countries but is there a Tax on it in the UK?

glyn
02 Jul 07,, 17:03
So about 1.50 (euro).

It's roughly 1.10 to 1.15 here.....I'm sure we buy from the same companies and countries but is there a Tax on it in the UK?

Not only that but there is a tax on the tax!:mad: Rip-off Britain, eh?:mad: The monies raised goes to the general fund. If it went back into roads and bridges they would be made of solid gold by now!

FibrillatorD
02 Jul 07,, 21:58
Certain areas are cheaper than others, but say on average somewhere between 95 and 99 pence a gallon.

!!!

per gallon?

Never knew it was so cheap in the UK. We're paying ~$3.25/gallon (about L 1.60 I'm guessing).

Then again, y'all made the switch to unleaded fuel pretty recently, right?
Mainland Europe... what, ~$1.25/litre?

Kernow
02 Jul 07,, 22:49
!!!

per gallon?

Never knew it was so cheap in the UK. We're paying ~$3.25/gallon (about L 1.60 I'm guessing).

Then again, y'all made the switch to unleaded fuel pretty recently, right?
Mainland Europe... what, ~$1.25/litre?

Glyn means per litre, UK is damn expensive. Here is an example:

95 Octane = 97 pence a litre, 4:41 a Gallon which 65% is Tax. $8:90.
Diesel = 97.4 pence a litre, 4:42 a Gallon which 65% is Tax. $8:90.
Super-Unleaded = 1:03 a Litre, 4:70 a Gallon which 62% is Tax. $9:50.

Therefore we pay more than 100% more than the US citizen!!!!!:mad:

glyn
02 Jul 07,, 23:20
[QUOTE=FibrillatorD;386693]!!!

per gallon?

I'm sorry. A foolish mistake on my part.:confused: It is per litre. I think this works out at around US$ 9 per gallon.:mad:

Gun Grape
03 Jul 07,, 00:29
Glyn means per litre, UK is damn expensive. Here is an example:

95 Octane = 97 pence a litre, 4:41 a Gallon which 65% is Tax. $8:90.
Diesel = 97.4 pence a litre, 4:42 a Gallon which 65% is Tax. $8:90.
Super-Unleaded = 1:03 a Litre, 4:70 a Gallon which 62% is Tax. $9:50.

Therefore we pay more than 100% more than the US citizen!!!!!:mad:

Thats what you get for driving on the wrong side of the road.:biggrin:

Kernow
03 Jul 07,, 00:42
Thats what you get for driving on the wrong side of the road.:biggrin:

Very Good.;)

JAD_333
03 Jul 07,, 01:02
Glyn means per litre, UK is damn expensive. Here is an example:

95 Octane = 97 pence a litre, 4:41 a Gallon which 65% is Tax. $8:90.
Diesel = 97.4 pence a litre, 4:42 a Gallon which 65% is Tax. $8:90.
Super-Unleaded = 1:03 a Litre, 4:70 a Gallon which 62% is Tax. $9:50.

Therefore we pay more than 100% more than the US citizen!!!!!:mad:


Diesel in my part of US (Virginia) is $2.63 a gallon right now, tax included. Was $2.99 a couple of weeks ago. I use about 30 gals a week getting from job to job. At your pump price I'd be paying about $240 a fill up. :eek: