While much of the green car field is devoted to developing technology of new vehicles, what about the 800 million vehicles already on the road today? What if the technology existed to green your existing vehicle at a low cost and minimal effort to you?
I recently had the opportunity to learn about Blade, a small attachment that fits to your tailpipe to increase gas mileage and trap dirty particulates. It fits most cars, but works best on 4-cylinder vehicles. It is reported that Blade can increase gas mileage on these types of vehicles by up to 34 percent. The promoters also say the Blade reduces emissions of carbon dioxide (6 percent), nitrous oxide (34 percent), methane (33 percent), hydrocarbons (57 percent), and carbon monoxide (14 percent). At $199, it has an average payback period of less than six months. You can install it yourself with the help of their how-to videos online, or take your car to an authorized installer near you.

"The worst thing that you do to the environment everyday is turn the key of your car...This is something that individuals can do to really make a difference," Bill O'Brien (CEO) told AutoblogGreen in an interview. The Crystal Method DJs agreed. Before their performance at a recent demonstration event about the Blade in Venice, CA, they added that they liked the filter because it made their car look like a "James Bond mobile."


UPDATE:

To better explain Blade, CEO Bill O'Brien sent the following to AutoblogGreen:

1st, it is common for bloggers to beat up Blade as there have been many other products that claim fuel economy benefit and they had no proof that their product worked. Most or all of these products have been tested at independent labs or by the EPA following the EPA 511 protocol and showed no benefit at all. That is precisely why we have spent so much time and money on testing at the premier independent lab in the US, Automotive Testing and Development (ATDS) Inc. in Ontario, California (www.automotivetesting.com)

On our website there is the test data from our test of a 2004 Honda Civic at the lab and it shows the significant fuel economy benefits as well as the emission reductions. It is impossible to say that the Blade does not work after viewing the test data, but the complaint here is that it is only one car. To correct this we sent several cars and a van to the Lab and performed both the EPA 511 and the Society of Automotive engineers (SAE) J 1321 road test and have proven beyond any doubt that the Blade effect is real and repeatable across all of the test vehicles that include foreign and domestic 4cylinder, 6 cylinder , 8 cylinder and Hybrid vehicles.

This information has not yet been posted as we are doing a major media blitz on this. I would be comfortable having you mention that you have been made aware of this information prior to writing this article.

Regarding the references to thermal dynamics on the part of the bloggers, they seem to be under the impression that the product produces backpressure which would have a negative effect on the engine. Blade has built in pressure release (V-Cut) that allows the product to have the positive effect of exhaust scavenging without the negative effects of backpressure. In fact, the California Air Resources Board (CARB) made us do a backpressure test to ensure that we are not doing that as they equate backpressure to NOx increase. Our backpressure tests show no significant backpressure increases whatsoever and have been cleared by CARB to sell the product.

You can comfortably stand behind your article and the information we are close to release on testing with end the discussion.

Oh yeah, regarding the 34% fuel efficiency number. That number was obtained through on road tests and not by the lab. This number is without a doubt an up to number and not an average but I don't know of a car company that doesn't mention their up to numbers. This is common but that blogger has a point about it not being the average.

Lots of information. After reading, let me know what other information I can provide.

One more thing. Since Blade captures gasoline particulates (soot) from the exhaust and you can see it physically should be enough in and of itself for an environmentally minded person to want this product on their car. Particulate material is the most toxic emission your car puts out from both an environmental and human health standpoint.

Editor's note: First, when O'Brien writes "bloggers," he means readers who leave comments. Second, AutoblogGreen is not making any claims that we have seen Blade work as advertised, despite the tone of the original post.

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