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Hybrid Car Kit: One Size Fits All?

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Hybrid car kit: In-wheel motor from Protean

Hybrid car kit: In-wheel motor from Protean

A research project at a U.S. university could soon lead to the introduction of add-on hybrid kits which would be able to make virtually any gasoline car into a hybrid drive vehicle. The kit essentially adds electric drive capability to a vehicle’s rear wheels, and several prototypes have already been successfully tested. Technically referred to as a plug-in hybrid retrofit kit, students and engineers at Middle Tennessee State University place electric motors in the rear wheels and add a lithium battery as a power source.

Hybrid Car Kit: Video

The video clip below provides a thorough overview of how an in-wheel motor works. Protean Electric has pioneered the concept of in-wheel electric motors, and the video walks us through the technology and shows it many applications.

Hybrid Car Kit: The Future

While Protean’s system is highly successful, and opened up the industry to the entire concept of in-wheel motors, this new project with bolt-on hybrid kits is quite different in that it looks to make any car, even post-production models, into a hybrid.

Project participants say the MTSU engineering kits could be fitted to a standard combustion car and increase its fuel economy between 50 and 100 percent, all by allowing the electric motors to do their share of the work. The beauty of the kit is its simplicity, since no major components of the original car need to be changed. Brakes, suspension, and all mechanical parts remain as they are.

Right now, the project has advanced to the fund raising stage, and school officials are in talks with various fleet owners in order to create demo versions of the kits that could be put onto a small group of vehicles.

For more about one of the major players in the world of in-wheel motors, see the official website for Protean Electric:

Larry Bell writes about cars, gadgets, business, and history. He has been a professional writer and editor for over 20 years and enjoys all car-related topics, especially electric and hybrid vehicle news. Larry covers the auto industry for MPA and often reports live from the floor of major shows in Detroit, LA, San Francisco, Phoenix, Las Vegas and elsewhere.

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1 Comment for “Hybrid Car Kit: One Size Fits All?”

  1. Dear Sir,
    We are a Leading Group of Companies in India, having three Textile Units under our banner and are also job work converter for companies, like, LG, Samsung, Sony etc. having a total turnover of more than 200 million USD PA.
    We are interested to import retrofitted hybrid kit for cars into India. You are requested to let us know the full details of your kit as well as what is the success rate of your kit.
    1. Since how long you have been manufacturing this kit?
    2. How many kits you have manufactured now?
    3. What will be the CNF price of the same?
    Please give us as much information to study the subject so that we can precede this matter.
    Thanks & Regards
    Rinki Chauhan
    Revel Compu Con Pvt Ltd

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