Prius Goes Plug-In Via Aftermarket Tech

Plug-In Conversions of Poway, California is beating Toyota to the punch in unveiling an improved plug-in design modification for the Prius. According to EV World, this diminutive start-up has developed a conversion kit for the 2010 model Prius that grants drivers the ability to hit highway speeds for as much as 40 miles as a purely electric car.

The conversion kit makes use of a 12.5kWh lithium battery pack produced by the Hong Kong-based company Gold Peak, as well as computer software developed by Andrew and Chris Ewert of Chicago, Illinois. This third-generation Prius is the first of its kind to demonstrate an electric car range comparable to the Chevrolet Volt, greatly exceeding the 12-13 mile range of Toyota’s own plug-in hybrid Prius.

Plug_In_Prius_Conversion

image via Plug-In Conversions

In a recent road rally outside of Madison, Wisconsin, the converted version of this car delivered 245 mpg fuel efficiency over the 24 mile course that included interstate, county roads and city streets.”If we’d had another day or two to finish testing the car, we could have driven the entire course in electric mode,” Chris Ewert explained to EV World, adding that the couple of software glitches he and his brother discovered have now been fixed.

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Susan DeFreitas has covered all manner of green technology for EarthTechling since 2009. She is a graduate of Prescott College for the Liberal Arts and the Environment, and has a background in marketing green businesses. Her work on green living has been featured in Yes! Magazine, the Utne Reader and Natural Home.