Automobiles have been around for quite some time now; over 100 years. In that time, technology has evolved considerably, but for the majority of the life of the car, the engine hasn’t changed too much. The internal combustion engine, running on gasoline, has been the most popular engine type, and although their have been competitors, such as electric cars, diesel, and external combustion engines, none have really taken off (external combustion was popular for a while, until people realized that flaming cars are insanely dangerous).
Now, inventor Tim Thompson has a brand new, and highly anticipated, engine, that he hopes will eventually replace the internal combustion engine. Said Thompson:
“I wanted a vehicle that had the best parts of an electric vehicle, and a gasoline-powered vehicle, but I was turned off by the fact that the electric motor only charged while stopped. Additionally, I was strongly averse to fuel efficiency. So, I was forced to create my own, custom automobile prototype.”
Thompson set off on building his prototype, starting off with the basic elements of an electric car. Essentially, an electric car is what he built, but with a key differenc; you don’t have to plug it in to charge it. Instead, the batteries are exclusively charged via a gasoline powered generator, carried on-board.
“Using a gasoline generator, you can now charge anywhere; you just have to fire up the generator, and sit there for several hours. This will also allow you to have unbelievably low efficiency, due to the use of two systems, and extreme amounts of additional weight on your automobile. It’s fantastic.”
Although this technology is something to be admired, there are skeptics; some experts are expressing the bizarre idea that efficiency should be higher, not lower. This is, of course, the minority, but it’s something to look at in the future.
Thompson has already moved on, trying to develop a new, fusion vehicle, that combines an electric motor, and the little-used external combustion engine. Thompson has expressed that he would like to have real flames, not painted ones, “standard with every vehicle.” Look out this summer for the Thompson Motors Combo-Drive line of vehicles; prices start at a steep $125,000, but that’s the price you pay for very low efficiency.