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20 May 2008 @ 10:43 am
And you thought you couldn't afford a hybrid.  
These are supposed to be for sale in the fall. In the FALL OF THIS YEAR.

I want to see footage of a car with one installed. If they work, hot DAMN, I am so getting one. Three thousand dollars to turn my car into a plug-in hybrid? Yes please.

I am stunned that such a thing can exist, delighted that it seems to, and worried that it's all a big scam that will dash my hopes.
 
 
 
Tyellastyellas on May 23rd, 2008 08:17 am (UTC)
I've been puzzling over this for several days. And I asked my flatmate who knows much more about cars. He said it looks perfectly probable. He also says that the torque bar is connected to the metal body work (the undercarriage) not the plastic bumper, so that's OK. The torque bar holds the wheel in place, which is helpful for this configuration.

The problem is the additional weight in the wheel, which adds up to 76 pounds per axle. The weight of your tires and axles is finely calibrated against the weight of the body of your car so that your car rides smoothly and with a low amount of wear and tear. The lighter your wheels are, the better. Disrupting this balance is what causes problems. "It's going to affect your suspension; it's going to put a lot of extra wear into that rear suspension." Heavier shock absorbers and heavier rear springs could help in some cars. For shortish runs (up to 15 miles) on flat roads, this might be tolerable. For longer travel, "This wouldn't be good on a truck...if you were doing a long trip I'd be very much inclined to remove this. If you're a two-car family, modify one car, but don't use the modified car for long trips."

There you have it.