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The Shetland islands may not have much of road network, but they have become the test centre for a car hailed as the future of motoring.
Its designers say the hydrogen-powered car, whose only emission is water and which is said to be capable of circling the globe using less power than your average lightbulb, heralds a new age of clean, quiet motoring. In 15-20 years, hydrogen powered vehicles could be commonplace on the roads, they say.
But only the diminutive will be able to drive the dolphin-shaped BOC Gh2ost at present - at 40kg, it weighs less than the interior fittings of a standard family saloon.
The car is expected to need the equivalent of just two gallons of petrol to navigate the globe using 25 watts of power.
This week it will travel to the mainland in an attempt to break the world fuel efficiency record, which stands at 10,705 miles per gallon, during the Shell Eco Marathon in Aberdeenshire.
"It sounds unbelievable how little power is used to keep the BOC Gh2ost moving," said John Carolin, global director for the gas giant BOC's hydrogen energy division. "It demonstrates the impact of careful design.
"Hydrogen power could create a pollution and noise-free environment and bring vital transport solutions to people in poorer parts of the world. Petrol vehicle emissions are a major contributor to rising levels of greenhouse gases and the depletion of fossil fuels. Hydrogen is odourless and tasteless and is the most abundant element in the universe."
The car's fuel-cell technology has been supplied by the Aberdeen-based firm siGEN, and its sea-mammal form, designed by a racing car expert is constructed of carbon fibre and lightweight aluminium. It has been assembled and road-tested in the Shetland isles.
Experts say that to stand a chance of cracking the fuel-efficiency record, the car has to be as light as possible.
"The total weight of this car will be under 40kg," said Dave McGrath of siGEN. "It will be lighter that the front seats of an average family car."
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