3 Exciting Environmentally-Friendly Cars of the (Near) Future

Automotive technology is rapidly changing, and who hasn't looked around at the cars on the streets and wondered: what will they think of next?

What will they think of next?: Photo by Accretion Disc, flickr. Click to see Creative Common license.What will they think of next?: Photo by Accretion Disc, flickr. Click to see Creative Common license.

Of course, the wish is that the next generation of cars will be fuel-efficient, low emissions, and fun to drive. Here are a few environmentally-friendly cars of the near future that just might fit those parameters.

Peugeot's Air-Powered Hybrid

Peugeot Citroen revealed the hybrid air-powered Citroen Cactus as a concept car at the Frankfurt Motor Show in September of 2013. This car literally runs on air! It uses a tank of compressed air in place of the batteries utilized by typical hybrids.The air tank powers a hydraulic motor-pump, which assists a gas engine. The tank refills with air during braking and deceleration. The Citroen Cactus gets an estimated 81 miles per gallon and has very low CO2 emissions. Take a look:

 Peugeot plans to put these air-powered hybrids into production by 2016.

Elio's Three-Wheeled Wonder

The Elio (created by Lousiana startup Elio Motors)  may not be a marvel of modern technology, but it is a marvel of smart design. This environmentally-friendly car of the future gets an impressive 84 miles per gallon the old fashioned way -- with a small body and a tiny 3 cylinder engine. It's as cute as a button! Check it out:

 Elio plans to launch the car later this year.

VIA Motors' Really Big Hybrid Truck

When you think environmentally-friendly hybrid, you usually think compact car, but VIA Motors has a different idea. The XTRUX is a hybrid pickup truck that's big and powerful, and maybe even macho.The XTRUX debuted as a concept vehicle at the 2013 North American International Auto Show. Here's some footage from the event:

The XTRUX has not one, but two, electric motors that can go 40 miles on their own, plus a V8 engine as a range extender. There are no immediate plans to put the XTRUX into production, but here's hoping that this monster is on the road soon!

The future isn't now, but it's coming soon, and with these environmentally-friendly concept cars on the horizon, it's full of promise.

Source: Gizmag

Read more about environmentally-friendly car design: New Aluminum-Air Battery Makes Electric Cars Worry-Free