Story: Wm Ferguson for the NY Times:.
Guy Nègre, a onetime Formula One engineer, has created a car that runs on compressed air. It gets up to 120 miles per tank in the city; you can fill it up in as little as three minutes; its emissions are minimal. A working prototype has been available for more than 10 years. So why aren’t we all whooshing around in cars that run on air? Well, Nègre’s car isn’t magic. The engine needs energy to run a generator to fill the car’s carbon-fiber tanks. And at speeds greater than 35 miles per hour, the efficiency of the compressed-air engine diminishes, and a fuel-burning heater kicks in. But the engine hasn’t been the real challenge; selling the idea has. That task may become easier when the first compressed-air cars hit the road in India, where Nègre’s company, MDI Enterprises, has finally attracted a powerful business partner: