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The Lotus Exige 270E Tri-Fuel – which can run on petrol, bioethanol or methanol – will make its first British car show appearance at the ‘Eden Sexy Green Car Show’ which runs May 23-31 at the Eden Project in Cornwall.

The organisers say this car of the future is proof that motors can be both green and sexy.

Ultimately, the sports car could be ‘carbon-neutral’, says Lotus Engineering. Its emissions would be balanced by recovering waste carbon dioxide in the atmosphere to make methanol. Within 15-20 years, Lotus hopes to see large-scale methanol production ‘recycling’ the carbon dioxide produced by factories.

Geraint Castleton-White, Head of Powertrain at Lotus Engineering, said the model marks a step forwards in the hunt for cleaner fuels, especially because the technology can slot into any conventional car. He said: “For car companies and the motorist, the use of sustainable alcohols like synthetic methanol requires relatively few changes to the vehicle. It can also use the current fuel distribution infrastructure, which is a huge advantage for suppliers.”

The Eden Project’s Gus Grand, the show’s director, said: “This could be the fuel of the future. It’s a real coup to showcase this technology here at Eden, where the public will get a taste of the vehicles we hope they’ll be driving in the next few decades.”

The Co-operative Insurance Eden Sexy Green Car Show is now in its second year and 2008 will see more vehicles on display, testing their green credentials at what is normally a car-free zone. Among other major manufacturers showing off their latest low-emission cars will be Citroen, Honda, Peugeot, Saab, Fiat, Volkswagen, Seat and Ford.