MTSU research team develops DIY plug-in hybrid conversion kit for nearly any car
Are you handy with tools and are anxious to have a plug-in hybrid electric car NOW rather than wait for the car makers to build the plug-in hybrid vehicle of your dreams? A team of students at Middle Tennessee State University have developed an inexpensive plug-in hybrid retrofit kit for any car. The kit, which has a projected $3,000 price, has been demonstrated to improve fuel economy by 50 to 100 percent.
MTSU's Dr. Charles Perry, who holds the Russell Chair of Manufacturing Excellence, oversaw a team of students who jointly developed the kit as part of a research project. The team involved the work of nine students over the last five years, some of whom have since graduated from MTSU. “The whole point was to demonstrate the feasibility of adding the electrical motor to the rear wheel of the car without changing the brakes, bearings, suspension — anything mechanical,” Perry said.