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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

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.

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

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.

The Automotive X Prize announcer used it. We've been using if forever. And, until recently, MDI and Zero Pollution Motors were still calling their vehicles the Air Car. Now, though, to avoid confusion as much as possible, the preferred term is "Compressed Air Vehicle" (don't look now, but the ZPM website still says Air Car). At the New York Auto Show this week, we finally had a chance to sit down with Guy Negre, the creator of the CAV, and his partner Shiva Vencat (Vencat also provided translati

While wandering around near the Automotive X-Prize booth, look what we stumbled onto: MDI's air car. The green plastic-y version that had just been uncovered - I think for a video team's camera - bears only slight resemblance to the rendering that appeared on the X-Prize screen. It looks even less like the previous version of the Air Car that we've seen before. We'll be sitting down with the people behind the Air Car later today to figure out just what it is we're looking at here.

One thing we are really looking forward to at the New York Auto Show is the official start of the Auto X-Prize, a contest to build a 100 MPGe car with a multi-million dollar prize. At the Detroit Auto Show, the X-Prize people and some of the teams had car models on display (see video below the fold).

Tomorrow, MDI will show the Big Apple what an air car looks like. The unique compressed-air-powered vehicle will be unveiled during the Automotive X Prize's big announcement on Thursday. We've been following the progress of the Air Car for quite some time, and look forward to letting our cameras take a good look at this zero tailpipe emission vehicle, which might look different from the one you see above, if I'm reading the press release correctly. We won't be the only ones checking the car out,

That game show should be called, are you smarter than this fifth grader?

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)

According to Green Business, the Air Car will arrive in the US by 2009 or 2010, courtesy of Zero Pollution Motors. The quirky alt-propulsion vehicle's anticipated $17,800 price tag includes standard safety equipment like airbags and ABS, along with the 75-horsepower compressed-air six-cylinder that gives the car its name. Brave envelope-pushers might even reach the Air Car's estimated 96 mph top speed. Drivers who aren't interested in treating it like a Mustang GT, however, should achieve fuel e

According to Climate Change Corp, the Air Car will be released this year thanks to a $30,000,000 investment from Tata. Months ago, we told you about reports in The Age newspaper and BBC News that MDI, Moteur Development International, said the car would be released in 2008. We dialed back our enthusiasm when we read in an Indian paper that Tata said the car sill required two years' work. Fears concerning a delay were confirmed when Oil Drum asked MDI about these concerns and it stated a release

Recently, I posted a video of a BBC News report with the exciting news MDI would release their compressed powered air car in 2008. I assumed such an early release was largely due to Tata's connection to MDI but according the Mumbai Mirror, Tata now says the air car is "two years away." I said I doubted a release by MDI alone.

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

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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