New era of hybrid cars will run on air

New era of hybrid cars will run on air

Peugeot-Citroen has unveiled new technology that revolutionises the hybrid powertrain by replacing the electric motor with compressed air. The result is a city car that's potentially capable of 81mpg.

The new technology is due to be officially unveiled at the Geneva Motor show in March but Peugeot-Citroen has given us a sneak peek at its new Hybrid Air concept, the car that uses compressed air as a secondary source of propulsion.> The ground breaking concept vehicle still features a conventional combustion engine but a hydraulic motor that's powered by a tank of compressed air assists a bespoke transmission system.

The result is a car that can run on petrol power alone or a combination of the two. Air power would be employed solely for urban use, automatically activated below 43mph, and available for "60 to 80 per cent of the time in city driving," claims PSA.

New era of hybrid cars will run on air

The compressed air system is heavy, adding around 100kg to the overall weight of a standard city car but the fuel savings are still impressive.

Peugeot-Citroen hopes to introduce the Hybrid Air system to larger B and C-segment cars with petrol engines between 82 and 110bhp, as part of its drive to develop a car with 117mpg fuel consumption figures by 2020.

The first production models are slated for 2016 but the concept is likely to get an official unveiling at the Geneva motor show later this year.

An answer to rising fuel prices or a load of got air? Let us know your thoughts in the comments below
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