The Toyota Prius is great and all, but try carrying sheets of plywood or a soccer team around in it. Oy.
Kraig Higginson, Chairman of Raser Technologies, believes there should also be hybrids that can handle some heavy lifting. His sentiment was echoed by Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger, who invited the energy technology company to California last week to demonstrate its 100 mpg plug-in hybrid Hummer H3 as part of a monthly series promoting alternative-fuel vehicles in the state.
Higginson showed off the series hybrid SUV, which uses a 2.0L EcoTec engine to charge its battery. The 4WD vehicle is powered by a 200kW advanced-AC induction motor, which on an empty battery achieves 33 to 35 mpg. The 2008 Hummer H3 with a conventional gasoline power train receives a combined fuel economy of 15 mpg.
"At its worst it already meets the new CAFE standards announced by Obama," said David West, vice president of marketing for Raser.
However, West said that drivers would be able to achieve unlimited gas mileage if they charged the vehicle's battery using electricity from a standard 110-volt or 220-volt outlet, and drove less than 40 miles per day; 75 percent of all drivers typically drive this far or less daily. … Read more