Peugeot’s hybrid system fuses fuel, compressed air


Peugeot’s 2008 urban crossover full of air—which is just as well as compressed air helps to propel the car.

WITH its HYbrid Air technology, Peugeot said it is reducing fuel consumption and CO2 emissions by means of a new breakthrough solution._

The carmaker explained that HYbrid Air combines gasoline with compressed air in a full-hybrid solution that’s key in achieving a fuel consumption goal of two liters per 100 kilometers and average CO2 emissions of 116 grams per kilometer by 2015—all without sacrificing driving pleasure. To achieve this, Peugeot said it is investing in a range of technologies which are already present on its vehicles, as well as on an engine downsizing strategy, the widespread use of its Stop & Start and electric vehicles, among others.

Peugeot’s HYbrid Air system has been fitted to its 2008 urban crossover that’s powered by a new-generation three-cylinder gas engine and compressed air.

The carmaker explained that in HYbrid Air, compressed air will assist (or even take the place of) the gas engine during acceleration. The system has three modes—Air, Petrol and Combined. In Air mode, only the energy contained in the compressed air will drive the vehicle. As it depressurizes, the air occupies an increasing amount of space in the energy tank and so displaces a corresponding volume of oil. This is an energy carrier which supplies the hydraulic motor coupled to the epicyclic drivetrain. As the internal combustion engine is switched off, the vehicle moves without consuming any fuel or emitting any CO2.

This mode comes into its own when driving in town.

In Petrol mode, only the 1.2-liter VTi three-cylinder gasoline engine powers the vehicle. This mode is particularly suited to steady speeds on main roads and highways, according to Peugeot.

In Combined mode, the engine and hydraulic motor operate simultaneously to move the vehicle, in proportions adjusted according to the situation to achieve optimum fuel economy. This mode is best during “transitional phases” in town and on the open road (moving off, acceleration), Peugeot said.


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