The annual Design Challenge reveals cars of the future might be grown in farms or refueled with a tire pump.

How would a light weight (1000 lb), four passenger environmentally friendly car of the future look and drive? That was the the brief issued to a number the design studios of automotive manufacturers for the annual Design Challenge. Freed from the constraints of real world production, the design teams created concepts that explore new directions in both vehicle styling and advanced technology to produce and power the cars.

Below is a summary of each of the nine entries. Mercedes certainly takes eco-technology to a new level and we like the zany direction Smart went in. Check out more images from the entrants and details on the concepts at the Design Challenge site. A winner will be chosen during the upcoming LA Auto Show in November.

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