Chinese carmaker’s newly developed air purifier system is N95-certified and can deal with bacteria and viruses in the cabin
Geely Icon compact SUV gets an N95-certified intelligent air purifying system.

It works in tandem with the AC to isolate and kill harmful elements present in the cabin air.

Specially developed during the Coronavirus pandemic.

Luxury cars could use ultraviolet lighting in the future to kill germs present in the air before passing through the vents.

The ongoing Coronavirus pandemic has led to the quarantine and self-isolation of millions to avoid getting infected. This includes many people having to use their vehicles while wearing protective masks as the germs could enter the car’s cabin from the air vents. Chinese carmaker Geely, owners of Volvo, has responded quickly to develop a new N95-certified, built-in air purifier system for its new Icon SUV.

Geely’s Intelligent Air Purification System (IAPS) works in tandem with the Icon’s air conditioning system to isolate and eliminate harmful elements in the cabin air including bacteria and viruses. Most built-in air purifiers in modern cars are designed to combat pollutants like dust and PM 2.5 particles. New mass market cars in India like the Kia Seltos, Hyundai Venue, MG ZS EV and the new Hyundai Creta come equipped with built-in air purifiers. However, dealing with bacterias and viruses requires a different level of air purifying technology.

Some of the high-end, luxury carmakers are also working on developing air purifier systems that use low-intensity ultraviolet light called UV-C to kill any germs as it passes through the vents. Hospitals use UV-C lighting for sterilization purposes as it can kill pathogens, bacteria and viruses present in the air. There are standalone air filters that use UV-C to disinfect the air that passes between the lamps. These would be far more effective in the battle against germs than the lCON’s N95 air purifier which cannot stop particles smaller than 0.3 microns.

The Geely ICON compact SUV has been launched online in China and is offered with a mild-hybrid powertrain too. Its 1.5-litre turbo-petrol engine comes paired to a 48-volt mild-hybrid system for a total output of 190PS and 300Nm while mated to a 7-speed DCT. Geely-owned Volvo could soon offer a similar type of air purifier system capable of eliminating bacteria and viruses.

All these air purifying technologies are not fool-proof, of course, and individuals must still maintain a satisfactory level of personal hygiene in the war against germs and pandemic like the COVID-19 Novel Coronavirus. For those of us without this cutting-edge cabin air purifying tech in our cars, it’s best to wash our hands frequently and to use a sanitizer to wipe clean all major touchpoints like the steering wheel, door handles, driver controls and the central console.