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  1. #1
    Guest

    Hybrid Mini Cooper

    The Mini Cooper doesn't come in a hybrid version (yet), but a small British company has turned one into a pretty impressive hybrid on their own. It's a different take on hybrids than we are used to. The car is powered by four small electric motors, one in each wheel. Each one is 160 bhp, so the car sports a surprising total of 640bhp.

    Most hybrids use the gas engine to power the vehicle. This car instead uses it to recharge the battery. Regenerative braking also helps add juice to the battery. To top it off, you can plug the car in when you aren't driving it around.

    All of this creates some solid performance. The car gets 80 miles per gallon and has a range of more than 930 miles on a single fill. You won’t get passed on the highway, either – the car goes 0-60 in just 4.5 seconds and tops out at 150 mph. No word on when, or if, it will go beyond being a single demo vehicle.

    http://www.mobilemag.com/content/100/354/C9337/

    This puts all other hybrids to shame - except maybe the volta

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  3. #2
    Guest

    Hybrid Mini Cooper

    Bogus alert: Has anybody done the math on how big / heavy a battery it would take to power four 160 HP electric motors for 930 miles? No mention is made of the 40-foot-long tractor-trailer rig it would take to carry the "battery" for this electric car.

  4. #3
    Guest

    Hybrid Mini Cooper

    Paul,

    I wouldn't rule the weight out. My recollection is that AC Propulsion's eBox has about 600 lbs of Li-ion batteries and should go about 200 miles on a charge (driven very slowly and beyond the reasonable safeties). I also was told that when they compared the Mini with the Scion xB that the coeficients of drag were about the same. Therefore, if you double the amount of batteries in the eBox, you get about 1200 lbs of battery and about 400 miles. This might be silly but probably isn't completely ludicrous.
    I suspect that a 200 - 300 mile real-world range would be more reasonable.

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