• Mar 11th 2009 at 9:59AM
  • 9
Click above for a high-res image gallery of Lightning Hybrids LH4 renderings

In less than a month at the Denver Auto Show, a new contender for the Progressive Automotive X-Prize is scheduled to be revealed by a startup automaker called Lightning Hybrids. There's plenty of innovative thinking here, including the use of a 2-stroke engine running biodiesel mated with a hydraulic hybrid powertrain. Combined, the team of engineers behind the vehicle expects it to hit 100 miles per gallon and offer up 240 horsepower.

An aerodynamic shell is crucial when aiming for such high efficiencies, and the team seems to have achieved at least that part with a .20 Cd. The final form will be shod in carbon fiber for a light curb weight, which should also help the Lightning LH4 make the run to 60 mph in under six seconds.

If all goes to plan, which is certainly a very big "if", Lightning hopes to put its first cars into production sometime in 2010 with two cars that it's currently got on the drawing board. Of course, winning the $10 million X-Prize purse would likely go a long way towards achieving that lofty goal.

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    • 1 Second Ago
      • 6 Years Ago
      I thought 2-stroke engines over 49cc weren't even legal for street use anymore. It seems like an odd choice since not only is this competition about MPG, its also about emissions....and that is something that will always plague 2-stroke engines.
      • 6 Years Ago
      I want to know why it has SUV-esque ground clearance.
      • 6 Years Ago
      • 6 Years Ago
      no, no, no
      • 6 Years Ago
      At least *look* nice.
      • 6 Years Ago
      I'm a big fan of the 2 stroke engine; far fewer moving parts, smaller, lighter, more powerful. But I question the general public's willingness to use 2 stroke. Adding fuel they are used to, adding oil?
      • 6 Years Ago
      The showcar clamshell door/roof combo is Art Centre fantasy.

      Why do 15 year old boys keep doodling them?

      So a SUV takes your lane and you go for a single but scary roll off the shoulder.
      The carbon-fibre did it's job and everybody is fine but yer on the damn roof.

      Then the 2-stroke's fuel tank starts to leak...
      • 6 Years Ago
      This is obviously not even close to production. A concept this flawed has to make you worried about the competencey of the company..a few issues:

      - how am I supposed to get into the back seat?
      - how am I going to get out if I crash?
      - how is it possible - based on the body line - that the back seat has any head room?
      - why is the car's body sitting 20 inches off the ground?
      • 6 Years Ago
      Why does Autoblog keep covering the eco-vaporware!? ARGH!