The LA Design Challenge is one of the most eagerly anticipated events of the LA Auto Show pitting different auto brands building their concept vehicles based on the set criteria for the event. This year’s theme focuses on society’s shift towards minimizing their dependence on natural resources by building a light-weight vehicle that focuses on efficiency without sacrificing the style of the vehicle.

Honda’s entry for the 2010 Design Challenge is the Air concept, a lightweight vehicle that uses alternative fuel, all while boasting an aggressive look inspired by, oddly enough, roller coasters and skydiving wing suits. So, we guess that’s why it’s called the Air concept.

In any case, the Air uses a compressed air and pneumatic regulator system that uses turbo vacuums and external air-flow to regenerate the tank’s pressure system, ensuring that the vehicle has extended range and increased boost to last an estimated 100 miles. Anytime you need to have your tanks and reserves refilled efficiently, a Honda generator and air compressor does the trick, either from the comforts of your own home or at a local station.

For safety, the Air concept uses vegetable-based polymer panels and fairings to ensure the safety and protection of its occupants.

The whole body of the Air concept resembles the look of a modern rollercoaster designed to optimize the open-air experience. Then there’s the chassis, which has a variety of purposes to eliminate the structure’s redundancy and reduce the vehicle’s overall weight, ensuring that it doesn’t exceed 1,000 lbs. Other weight-saving procedures done to the Air include the use of a hub-less wheel and drive system instead of the standard drive train system, glass reinforced seating panels, urethane tire composition, and skeletal sub-frame components, all of which contributed to the Air shedding off a significant amount of weight, rounding off to just about 800 lbs.

Press Release after the jump.


The Honda Air concept is a vision of the future of lightweight and alternative fuel performance vehicles; a coastal cruiser for the aggressive lifestyle. Inspired by the modern roller coaster as well as skydiving wing-suits, the Air is powered by a compressed air and pneumatic regulator system. It utilizes turbo vacuums and external air-flow to regenerate tank pressure for extended range and increased boost for an estimated 100 miles. The chassis doubles as the master tank and all components, including seating, are mounted to the central chassis/tank to eliminate redundant structure and reduce overall weight.

2010 Honda Air Concept Exterior Computer Renderings and Photoshop
- image 383316

Vegetable based polymer panels and fairings protect occupants, maintaining the solid Honda method; safety for everyone. The Air’s cockpit and package maintain the aggressive human packaging of a modern roller coaster aimed at maximizing the open air experience. In order to reduce weight and increase dynamic performance, a hub-less wheel and drive system eliminates the use of heavy drive train components. Glass reinforced seating panels, urethane tire composition and skeletal sub-frame components combine for drastic weight savings. Using a Honda generator / air compressor at home or tire filler at your local filling station, the main tanks and reserves can be filled quickly and safely.

2010 Honda Air Concept Interior Computer Renderings and Photoshop
- image 383319

At just under 800 lbs., the powerful anthem of pneumatic propulsion and a character unlike any zero-emission vehicle exemplifies Honda’s concept of fun to drive. The pow[air] of dreams.

Source: LA Design Challenge

Kirby Garlitos
Kirby Garlitos
Automotive Aftermarket Expert -
Kirby’s first exposure into the world of automobiles happened when he caught Knight Rider on television as a five-year old boy. David Hasselhoff didn’t leave much of an impression on him (that happened later on in Baywatch), but KITT certainly did. To this day, Kirby remains convinced that he will one day own a car with the same ‘spirit’ as the original KITT (not the 2008 monstrosity). He doesn't know when that will be, but until then, he’s committed to expressing his love for KITT, and all cars for that matter, here at TopSpeed.  Read full bio
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  (1) posted on 04.12.2014

The obsession with "power" amazes me. I am a more practical person....and for me, a vehicle is for getting from point a to point b and back again. I don’t need to go from 0 to 60 in 5 seconds. I really like this concept car (with a hard top in case it rains), and look forward to the product being offered on the market..

  (531) posted on 02.9.2012

This 2010 Honda Air Concept car is one of the environment-friendly sports car in the market of the modern day. This has the most amazing exterior design among other green cars in the market today.

  (528) posted on 08.9.2011

When talking about cars, I consider the looks and this one is definitely considerable. The color and the styling is unique. You will probably notice that it is a hybrid car because of that.

  (630) posted on 08.8.2011

The platform used is not that reliable. I doubt its performance on the road. I do like the design of the car, but I still consider on how it will work with its engine. I wonder of they created this for real.

  (345) posted on 04.6.2011

I understand that Honda is trying to provide a world class type of vehicles. Let’s not assume, but rather wait for its final production.

  (398) posted on 03.11.2011

I really like Honda’s work on the Air. The design of the whole body is really good and the concepts for the propulsion are also interesting.

  (542) posted on 12.1.2010

but this is not very important indeed such these kind of vehicles are not reliable for series usage at this moment.

  (743) posted on 11.26.2010

200 hp from a 1.5? not bad. but not great. given Honda’s engineering prowess up until a few years ago when they stopped trying, i’d have expected a lot more.

  (780) posted on 11.23.2010

A few look good, but they’re never beautiful. And non of them has a real engine. So for me they don’t have a change

  (341) posted on 11.22.2010

So if the CR-Z is trying to be competitive, it’s not trying to be the fastest race car ever. it’s trying to balance fast and fuel efficient. If it can do that, it’ll give the MX-5s a run for their money.

  (344) posted on 11.21.2010

Well, this is definitely one concept car that actually looks promising, I hope Honda gets ideas from this for their next production line.

  (743) posted on 11.21.2010

It looks like a toy but it is actually not. Its so cool! See, How creative and wild the mind of a person is. Uncomparable, Isn’t it?

  (442) posted on 11.18.2010

i really like concepts cars..their designs are extremely awesome and fabulous.

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