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Geneva auto show's vision of electric, autonomous future

The autonomous racing car, TORQ, from Ed Design was unveiled at the Geneva Auto Show this week.

Ed Design

Much of the talk at this week's Geneva International Motor Show was taking the electric car to the next level. Here are three technologies moving electric cars forward, starting from the ground up.

Running on rubber

Goodyear rolled out two concept tires at the auto show including one that electric carmaker Tesla says could charge its Model S.

Named the BHO3, the first tire would charge the batteries of electric cars by transforming the heat generated by the rolling tire into electrical energy. A second concept from Goodyear called Triple Tube contains three tubes that adjust tire inflation pressure in response to changing road conditions, offering drivers a range of levels from wet to sporty to eco/safety.

Going farther, faster

The Achilles heel of most electric cars has been the battery, which prospective buyers fear will leave them stranded on the side of the road. A new car unveiled in Geneva could nearly triple the range of today's electric vehicles.

The Quantino from nanoFlowcell AG has a range up to 621 miles (1,000 kilometer) while being able to reach speeds upwards of 124 miles per hour (200 kilometer per hour).

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nanoFlowcell AG

The car replaces a traditional battery with two tanks of ionized electrolytic liquids that combine to generate electricity. The owner fills up the tanks with the two liquids -- one carrying a positive charge, the other a negative charge -- much the way you would at the gas pump. When they interact, it creates electricity as you drive.

Eliminating the human element

The Italian firm Ed Design unveiled the TORQ, a sleek, futuristic race car that is all electric and autonomous. It features four powerful engines as well as a design that replaces glass windows with a set of obstruction-free 360-degree wraparound monitors that eliminate all blind spots.

Though the car in Geneva was only a prototype, the company hopes to have one ready in the next 24 months. The company is reportedly hoping to have it at Le Mans, the 24-hour endurance race, by 2025.

  • Michael Casey

    Michael Casey covers the environment, science and technology for CBSNews.com