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The "air car" would employ hydraulic power in addition to gasoline

A car that could run on thin air? On the road by 2016? That's what Peugeot-Citroen says it will be selling: A hybrid car that runs on a combination of gasoline and air. Digital Trends has an explainer on how they think it works, but they admit they were looking at poorly translated press releases. It seems to use hydraulic power to keep the car running and powering it up to speeds of 43 mph.

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When a news article about a new car starts with this line – "Vehicle currently in development requires no fuel, no external charging" – it makes us worry. We're not exactly big fans of vaporware made of unobtanium. So, it is with skepticism that we read about a new compressed air car being developed by the team at Club Auto Sport in Silicon Valley.

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Last December, Green Car Advisor's Nick Kurczewski was able to snag a ride in MDI's AIRPod. Now, the lucky punk journalist has taken a turn behind the wheel. The short version of his review: this could be the car of the future and it feels like an amusement park ride, but it's no Millennium Falcon. Seriously.

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According to Autocar in the UK, Scotland Yard has announced plans to replace half of its fleet of vehicles with either electric or air-powered vehicles within four years. We're not sure what air-powered vehicles are being considered, but we've been hearing about the compressed air vehicle from MDI for the last few years at least.

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A rear seat that faces backwards. Powered by compressed air. Name like the AirPOD and FlowAIR. A windshield that doubles as the door. There are a lot of hurdles that MDI's compressed air line of vehicles needs to jump before people will consider them "real" cars - or at least a solid alternative. At least one North American journalist was recently given the chance to see if riding in a prototype AirPOD is anything like a true car experience. The verdict: the vehicle is noisy, but maneuverable an

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Echoing rumors that we've been hearing all year is a news story from Kiplingers that we ran across on Yahoo Financial suggesting again that air-powered vehicles will be available in the U.S. within a few years time. Instead of larger cars, though, we could get the little three-wheeled, joystick-driven AirPod that's scheduled to hit New Zealand any time now. Zero Pollution Motors still has high hopes that it will bring cars powered by compressed air to the masses in the United States. In all actu

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One of France's most prestigious auto magazines, L'Auto Journal, has published a very skeptical and critical report about Guy Nègre's MDI compressed air car, whether we call it the AirCar or FlowAir. The article (not available online) makes quite a number of arguments against MDI and the whole idea.

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Looking like just about every other three-wheeled, joystick-controlled, compressed air-driven car we've ever seen, the AIRPod by MDI will be available to lease in New Zealand soon. MDI has an agreement with IndraNet Technologies to market them in the land of the M?ori and, according to an article in the New Zealand Herald, they could be arriving on the island before the end of the year. If true, that would be the first market where the rolling alien marshmallow would appear. The MDI website says

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We've already been scolded this year not to call the air car the Air Car. The nomenclature is not getting any easier, but hopefully we've reached the last rebranding of the "Compressed Air Vehicle." An update to the MDI website tells us that the vehicle line up now has a "FlowAIR" theme. The models are now known as the OneFlowAIR (open top), MiniFlowAIR (a mini minivan) and CityFlowAIR (a truck-like vehicle with a bed). If you've been following the MDI story, you might recognize parts of these n

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We heard that MDI, the creators of the AirCar - excuse us, the "Compressed Air Vehicle" - broke off all commercial relations with Miguel Celades, who had been carrying its commercial operations for a while. We tried multiple times to contact Mr. Celades for further explanations, but couldn't. So, we turned to MDI's new webpage and other sources for the information.

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Click on the image for more shots of the LEGO V8 engine

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Who would have thought that a concept as simple as compressed air could be a viable automotive technology? Sure, we all fill our tires with the stuff, but some automakers - MDI, for one - are considering compressed air as an energy carrier, like a battery. Whether a vehicle is engineered to run solely on air power or if the energy is stored as part of a hybrid system, the very air we breathe could provide propulsion for our vehicles.

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When we first encountered the Milner Motors ElectriCar yesterday, we just did a quick flyby with out cameras and then headed off to other events. Later in the afternoon, we returned for a 15 minute chat with Chris Milner, the AirCar inventor's son and a partner in the company. He talked about the design of the car, the potential roadmap from this early prototype stage to a production vehicle and why this is so much like the AirCar with its wings lopped off. And yes, Milner's AirCar and the MDI A

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One of my first tasks here in ABG was interviewing Miguel Celades. For a long time, Celades was Guy Nègre's sales partner in the development of the Air Car. Now, though, Nègre is now working with Tata Motors; he and Celades canceled their business partnership a few months ago (check MDI's press release here - Thanks to Heriberto for the tip)

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Guy Negre and Louis Arnoux of MDI-Energy, the company behind the air car, are in Melbourne, Australia, demonstrating the air car technology to government and potential investors as part of a five year, $1.5 B plan to make and sell the cars in Australia, according to the Age. The first plant will be established in Australia and the cars are expected to be sold in Australia next year says the Age. That turnaround seems fast to me but I would guess those projections may include existing plants from

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We have shown you the air-car before, and you may have seen it on TV if you watched the Discovery Channel series, Future Car. If you did, you witnessed them erroneously refer to the possibility of perpetual motion in reference to the air-car. While there is no perpetual motion at work here, there may be production plans in the works. An agreement between Tata Motors and MDI, creators and patent-holders for the air-car and it's powertrain may just bring the air-car to market.

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I remember watching this episode of Beyond Tomorrow a while back. There were two competing designers working on cars powered by compressed air. The idea is far from new, but these designers were actually taking the time and money that is necessary to develop their ideas to a commercial stage. The idea seems sound, as the tank of compressed air is really a "battery" of sorts that transfers its energy to a motor of some sort. The Focusing on the Air Car for a moment, it has a maximum top speed of

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Funny how what's old becomes new again, thanks to the archiving power of sites like YouTube. A seven-and-a-half minute video clip from CNN (a global or international version of the news network, by the looks of it) that was posted to YouTube in February just got picked up by MobileMag. The video is of a minicar that runs on compressed air. The technology is the work of Guy Negre, MDI president who used to work on F1 engines and his son Cyril. They have been working on the Air Car in the south of

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