India's largest automaker, Tata Motors is about to start production of the world’s first commercial compressed air-powered vehicle.
The cunningly named Air Car has been developed by ex-Formula One engineer Guy Nègre and, before you ask, no, it has nothing at all to do with Apple or portable computing!
The Air Car uses compressed air to power its engine's pistons and Tata estimates that 6000 Air Cars should be produced by the end of this year.
Running on hot air
The CityCat model will reach a whopping top speed of 68mph with a driving range of 125 miles on a full tank of squashed-up air, with a full tank estimated to cost around only £1.
Alternatively, if you don’t happen to live near to a compressor station, you can plug the Air Car into the mains electric and use its built-in compressor to fill up in around 4 hours or so.
Ecogeek reports that: “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.”
The car’s designer Nègre has signed deals to bring the Air Car to 12 more countries, including Germany, Israel and South Africa.