Converting HEV to PHEV

I am new to any electric vehicle, but I am eager to learn. So far, instead of waiting for manufacturers to produce an electric car to perform as good as our gas vehicles, I am thinking about converting a Toyota hybrid prius to a plug-in that will drive by electric only on the streets for 50 miles and use gas only above 50 miles and on the highway. From what I have read, this is workable. Any suggestions or thoughts? ggmoelle

This has been done before but for right now it pretty expensive considering you have to add more batteries and a computer controller. Though there is a company coming out with a product to do this. There website is edrive systems. They replace the stock battery to a lithium-ion battery system that works 15-20 times better.

I have also heard about DIYs doing it with US models since they discovered the europe prius has a switch or something to make it run 100% electric. So you can add this feature via hacking to a US toyota prius. This button switches the prius into full electric for driving locally at low speeds. Europe Prius Picture below.

Toyata Claims this feature was omitted or disabled because US law requires a warranty on hybrid drivetrains that include the battery pack. bla bla bla.

The Prius computer has already been hacked to enable this mission feature by a few smart owners.

The EDrive system web site is talking about $12,ooo.oo to convert to PHEV from HEV. That is too much money; General Motors found that out when the EV1 was thought to go for $10,000.00 more than for an equivalent vehicle. I think that the workable solution is for the do-it-yourself person to buy the Lithium batteries and control for about $3,000.00, install it,and drive their PHEV with signs that says that your car gets 100 to 200 miles per gallon and be willing to prove it. With gas prices so high, I think many people would buy such a car. If big car manufacturers would see a lot of interest,they would respond. ggmoelle

I agree with you that you should do it yourself and save money. If someone would learn how to do a conversion and make a step by step guide they could make enough money to pay for the conversion easy. I think the biggest expense will be for sure the batteries. I found a sight that shows a picture of the extra batteries in the back check it out…

Also here is a sight that has lots of info about Prius aka Prius Plus PHEV conversion

Thanks Big Ed, you have given me some places to check out.

No Problem ggmoelle, glad to help.

I am also wanting to start a project. But mine is going to be a little different. I want to either take a porsche 911 turbo widebody 1988-1992 and covert it to a full electric or start with a porsche replica spyder frame and body kit from thunder ranchand built it from the ground up to be a full electric. I am trying to talk a friend into helping out with the project but he has no interest in elecrtric cars only american muscle cars. But he is one of the smartest mechanics and car repairman I know. I have found that it is very had to find anyone doing this kind of work on electric cars in my area so i think it would be really nice to put a huge full color wrap on a car that is electric to build awareness, anyways good luck with your conversion.

I am changing my mind from PHEV to EV. I have read that the plug in hybrid needs the transmission needs lubrication from the gas engine. Since I want to use electric motor mostly, I am afraid to leave the transmisson unlubricated for long. This brings me back to converting my 1998 Saturn into an electric car. Is there any one in the St. Louis area that does this kind of work? Thanks for any info.

If you manage to raise enough money for that Porsche 550 replica EV… wow.
If you want to save yourself a few pennies, I’d recommend looking for a 1992 Oldsmobile Toronado. It’s a very futuristic as well as stylish 90s car with an onboard colour computer (with voice), car phone, digital display… the works.
Putting an electric motor in such an advanced car would be spectacular and if you manage to get the digital displays to accept the EV data, it’ll be like living in the year 2000 (The mythical 2000, not the actual 2000 from 7 years ago).

Hybrid Electric Vehicles (HEVs) are a combination of a typical Internal Combustion Engine (ICE) vehicle and a Battery Electric Vehicle (BEV) with an electric motor capable of supplying auxiliary power to the drive train. The combination provides better gas mileage compared to an ICE vehicle. See Current Hybrid Options for details on current and planned HEV options.

Plug-in Hybrid Electric Vehicles (PHEVs) take this concept one step further by adding additional batteries to the design (see Technology for further details). This allows the vehicle to be charged at night and be powered solely from stored electric energy during the day. This design has many advantages such as better gas mileage, less maintenance costs, helping the environment from reduced green house emissions, and bettering the United States economy by decreasing our reliance on foreign oil. More information about these Benefits can be found at the link on the left side of this page.

This technology will replace petroleum and will bring in the Hydrogen Economy—it is the Path to the Hydrogen Economy.

This web page is a creation of the “Energy Sustainability and Their Politics in the 21st Century” honors class at the University of Missouri - Columbia. Our aim is to provide information about this growing technology and show how it can become a technology that will pave the way to more efficient energy production and transmission, a cleaner environment, stronger domestic economy, and increased convenience for consumers.