World's first air-powered car introduced

By the year 2020, Toyota plans to have a hybrid power source in every vehicle they make, but even the folks from Aichi, Japan don't have anything that runs on air. MDI's CityCAT doesn't have a mast, and it's not some far-off, far-fetched idea. As a matter of fact, it's getting ready for production right now. French company MDI engineered this vehicle with ex-Formula One engineer Guy Nègre, and they're leaving production duties up to India's Tata Motors.

The first product, the CityCAT, reaches a top speed of 68mph and can go about 125 miles without refilling the carbon fiber compressed air chambers. 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.

[Source: Popular Mechanics via ecogeek]

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