PLUG OK license plate
Update on our "Do-It-Yourself" Prius conversion project
Oct 19, 2006 (From the CalCars-News archive)
This posting originally appeared at CalCars-News, our newsletter of breaking CalCars and plug-in hybrid news. View the original posting here.
Want more? Become a subscriber to CalCars-News:

Following is the message sent to the mailing list of the Electric Auto Association-Plug-In Hybrid (EAA-PHEV) project by Tom Driscoll, working with CalCars Tech Lead Ron Gremban and many volunteers. When the "DIY" PHEV conversion plans are complete, owners of 2004-2007 Priuses will be able to buy recommended packages of parts and components (including lead-acid batteries and a 120-volt charger) for under $5,000. Even those with no technical background will be able to connect with an electrician or engineer (EAA hopes to help with matchmaking), then spend a working week building a PHEV.

The result is likely to void part of the owner's new-car warranty, and drivers should not expect that this project will result in a positive financial payback. It will, however, give drivers a version of the world's cleanest extended range vehicle; those whose round-trip daily commute is under 20 miles will be able to get 100+MPG. And these conversions will contribute to the awareness and enthusiasm that we hope will result in car-makers mass-producing PHEVs.

If you're a possible "customer," be sure to respond to the questions, and to join the EAA-PHEV mailing list­maillist/­. This is an outgrowth of our Earthday weekend conversion at the Maker Faire in San Mateo, CA­makerfaire.html when a team of a dozen people built a car that then drove back to Seattle. We will do one more prototype in the near future. -- Felix

Attention, Plug-in Prius converters:

At­wiki/­PriusPlus we've posted a lengthy summary of what's happening with CalCars' Prius do-it-yourself (DIY) PHEV conversion plans. We will keep this page up-to-date, and it will be the location of the plans as they are completed. Of special note to you DIYers is the section where we outline the possibilities for fabrications and/or kits made by third parties for simplifying and accelerating your conversions.

Also, we are once again soliciting information: we want to know your intentions around doing the conversion. The answers to the questions below will be very useful to us and especially to possible kit sellers. It may also help interest a person or organization in consolidating parts orders, fabricating parts, and/or selling kits. In fact, if you have any interest in doing any of the above, please let us know so we can coordinate with you.

Please review­wiki/­PriusPlus and reply to me personally at tdriscoll@... (use the Forward button, not the Reply button). Be sure to give detailed answers to the following questions (found, with explanations, near the bottom of­wiki/­PriusPlus):

1. How definite are you about doing a conversion with our open source plans? 2. What is your timeframe? 3. What fabricated components or assemblies are you interested in buying (see lists and price estimates at­wiki/­PriusPlus)? 4. Are you interested in becoming a consolidator, fabricator, and/or kit supplier?

We want to do all we can to get as many PHEVs as possible completed ASAP, and are very busy with our own projects to improve the design and instructions. We apologize for the time it is taking to get these plans out to you, but are currently doing this work as volunteers. Of course, as always, contributions to Calcars­sponsor.html will help with this project.

Thank you! tdriscoll@... (Tom Driscoll)

Copyright 2003-09 California Cars Initiative, an activity of the International Humanities Center | Site Map