It started early this year when I began receiving spam emails asking if I wanted to power my car with water. More than a little skeptical and suspicious, I passed such enticements up and deleted them. Though they piqued my journalistic curiosity, the fact that I don’t own a car, and haven’t for more than a decade, made it easier to do so. Then, several months ago, I met a young electrician from a ranching family in rural Colorado. Using a mix of plain old water and plain old baking soda and applying an electric current, he was well on his way to devising a homemade electrolysis-hydrogen fuel production and delivery system for his late ’90s model pickup, one that was supplementing the engine’s intake and combustion of gasoline with hydrogen gas.
My eyes began to open and my skeptical mind turn on to the idea, one that, as it turns out, has been around for a long time. Like many such seemingly straightforward, practical and cost-effective clean technologies, somehow it just never caught on, which in turn, has led to various conspiracy theories as to why. All this may be changing, however…
Photo credit: Daughter of Dave Hawkin, Open Source Energy Project
As “Big 3″ executives continue to make all sorts of outlandish promises to secure billions more in public dollars, a new American car manufacturer is intent on making it in the US auto industry, striving to market and prove the concept that by designing autos with ecology, as well as style and power, in mind, its “eco-exotic” initial offering will appeal to potential buyers’ eco-mindedness, as well as a die-hard gearhead’s and exotic car buff’s love of power and style.
H20+Baking Soda+e = H-Fueled Hybrid
Gearing up to produce as many as 200 of its sexy, muscular Scorpions beginning next year, Austin, TX-based, OTC Pink Sheet-listed Ronn Motor Company (RNNM) is building them with lightweight carbon fiber bodies, Acura’s latest V6 engines, and equipping them with a hydrogen fuel injection system.
The Scorpion is one muscular, sleek looking vehicle. The initial production design includes an Acura V-tech, V-6 3.5 liter dual overhead cam, aluminum-magnesium block engine that puts out 289 horsepower in stock form, more than 450 with a twin turbo option. Yes, it puts out plenty of power and looks good doing it, but the Acura engine is about as efficient as you can get when it comes to internal combustion engine technology.
Moreover, in these energy, security, climate and eco-conscious times, Ronn Motor also aspires to making vehicles as clean and “green” as they can. Building from the ground up, the initial version of the Scorpion is of a type management calls a “mild hybrid”. Its body is made of lightweight, hand-built carbon fiber set over a chrome-molybdenum chassis. Xenon headlights and LED side markers, signal and brake lamps require less electrical power than conventional lighting.
Yet more intriguingly, the Scorpion is equipped with a Hydrogen On Demand system, which blends 130 octane hydrogen into the fuel mix in ratios of 30-50%. Hence, highway fuel economy will be in the 40 mile per gallon range while producing 450 hp with the twin-turbo option. The hydrogen fuel injection system increases fuel mileage between 15-35% on any internal combustion engine while reducing emissions to almost zero, the company claims.
The Scorpion made its debut – and apparently caused a good bit of stir – at the Specialty Equipment Market Association (SEMA) auto show last month.
Interest in Ronn has increased since, as it has for (http://www.scsfrigette.com/html/about/index.htm) Frigette, the manufacturer of the H2GO Real-Time Hydrogen Injection system used in the Scorpion. As a result, Frigette forecasts that demand for the H2GO system could reach as high as $1 billion in retail sales globally within three years, at an MSRP of $999.
“We are currently finalizing Global Distribution and manufacturing contracts with Frigette, which is the largest after-market automotive manufacturer and distributor in the U.S. with nine regional distribution centers and over 5,000 distributors. Frigette products are sold directly or indirectly to over 170,000 locations worldwide. Frigette has distribution presence in the U.S.A., Europe, China, India and Russia,” CEO Ronn Maxwell stated.