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4kwh Enginer GenIII PHEV in UK

Discussion in 'Prius PHEV Plug-In Modifications' started by Flaninacupboard, Jul 25, 2010.

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  1. Flaninacupboard

    Flaninacupboard Senior Member

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    I've just ordered/reserved a 4kwh kit which I'll be installing myself. I will update this thread with info about the whole process (from ordering through to results with each tank) and will of course take many pics and probably video during the install. As "gas" is so expensive here ($7 a gallon right now), and with the sale price, my payback on a system working as I anticipate is 24 months. As the kit is guaranteed for this length of time i pretty much see this as a "I can't lose!" situation.

    At the end of 2012, dependant on how this PHEV experiment has gone, I will either keep the vehicle a little longer (and replace the batteries if required) or trade up to an OEM PHEV of some description (Ampera/Prius/???).

    I'm very keen to push electrification as much as possible, so if anyone in the UK would like to see it once it's in, or ends up needing assistance with their own conversions, i'll do what I can to help.
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  2. Flaninacupboard

    Flaninacupboard Senior Member

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    Something i meant to mention before, in order to negate any "long tailpipe" type sentiments, I've already switched energy supplier to Ecotricity - the world's first green electricity company so all my EV miles (along with ALL my electrical use) will be wind powered. I've switched my gas to them as well, so as they get their waste biomass reactors online I will have green gas too.
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  3. GrumpyCabbie

    GrumpyCabbie Senior Member

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    I am hoping you'll post as much information as possible including many updates. I do want to know how you get on with it, any problems, any ongoing maintenance you need to do with it (balancing batteries etc). What mileage do you do a year, what average mpg do you/are you getting? Send me all the detail, just keep it simple - I'm only a cabbie!

    I'm trying to work out any payback period (though the idea of easy green power appeals also) and whether it will be a go-er for me or whether it'll be a royal pain in the a** and not worth the hassle.
  4. mrbigh

    mrbigh Prius Absolutum Dominium

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    I wish you luck and a great performance.
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  5. Jands

    Jands New Member

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    Going off topic here a little so I'll keep it brief - Ecotricity seems like an interesting company...they have no shareholders or dividends and the money that they make goes back into producing more "deep green renewable sources of energy" (mostly windmills).

    What's even more interesting is their Project Nemesis - they got some ex-F1 guys to convert a Lotus Elise (I think) to be driven by electric motors and aim to run from Land's End to John O'Groats (lowest tip of UK to highest tip, 840 miles) in less than 24 hours (trip should take an estimated 15 hours in a normal car) ...not sure of the car spec or how many batteries it'll have!
  6. Flaninacupboard

    Flaninacupboard Senior Member

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    Yes i've been happy with ecotrcity's service so far, and as and when i get a solar install i'm confident they'll be easy to work with setting up the FIT etc.

    For Grumpy:
    My annual milage is fairly high, between 20 and 22k, mainly depending on my wifes performance commitments. I tend to get high 60's mpg, my wife low 60's. We've done around 6.5k so far in the car at 65.2MPG, so I will happily peg 65 as our average. I would have preferred a whole year of data to do a before and after comparison, especially as we've missed out the winter, but it will have to do.

    As a side note, Jack has kindly agreed to extend the length of my warranty with respect to any time i lose if i have component failures. I was quite concerned that without any kind of dealer network in the UK i'd be waiting many weeks for spares. Now confident i will get the full two years use from the kit i am counting the days until it arrives.
  7. Airbalancer

    Airbalancer Active Member

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    Just to get off topic for a post or two :D
    Do you buy gas in Litres or Imp gallons?
    Are road distance in km or miles?
  8. GrumpyCabbie

    GrumpyCabbie Senior Member

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    lol, you're opening a tin of worms with that question!

    Officially we're metric and I was taught metric at school back in the 1970s & 80s, however, distances are still in miles and yards and the car speedo is in mph (but must have km/h also) and we use miles per gallon. But fuel is sold in litres. Low bridges have the height in feet and inches and road signs have yards - which confuses foreign truck drivers.

    On the other hand, most, if not all foodstuffs are sold in metric.

    Clear as mud eh?
  9. Airbalancer

    Airbalancer Active Member

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    we are mostly metric here
    I wish we did go the 100% meteric when we started in the 70's

    like who really know there 1760 yards in a mile ;)

    1000 m in km is so easy

    In Canada all signs are metric and gas is sold in litres
  10. GrumpyCabbie

    GrumpyCabbie Senior Member

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    Metric makes sense and is logical, but and it's an important but, it was invented by the French! THAT is the reason that most English speaking nations have trouble adopting it! :D

    (ducks head waiting for the flak!)
  11. Floyd2

    Floyd2 progressio per sententia

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    Just ordered a 4 kWh kit myself and I'll keep a close eye on this topic from this side of the Channel. I have a 2nd Gen. Prius but I assume it will be very similar.
    Got an e-mail from Jack saying that shipping will start somewhere end August/early September.

    Do you know anything about the new BMS Flaninacupboard, is it better than the previous Enginer system using balancers?

    Yes 'petrol' is expensive all over mainland Europe as well, I have my hopes set high on the Enginer kit. Doing just over 53 mpg on annual 20k (km's) so enough room for improvement.
    A few days ago I heard on the radio there will be a standard PHEV Euro-plug and socket for the bumper side. It might be handy to use that one instead but I couldn't find any info on that.

    Good luck! Hope to see some videos, that would be nice.
  12. olov

    olov New Member

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    There are a couple of engineer systems running here in Sweden, importer is installing the 10+ first and another 10 on it´s way. I installed mine a couple of weeks ago and the BMS shut off charger ok so far. I have not run under 3.1 V per cell pair yet so I have not seen the red light. Pack was cycled a couple of times before install with halogen lamps as load to check and it works ok. After a charge all cells settle at around 3.35 V, due to the chemistry they say. Importer say that on his first system he needed more than 40 cycles to get the cell buddies similar. Have fun. Olov
  13. Floyd2

    Floyd2 progressio per sententia

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    That is what I heard as well. Also that the European modifiction can be done differently because of the standard EV button we have. So the wiring can be different and no need to get behind the glove compartement. Do you know anything about that Olov?

    And how is you car performing with the Enginer kit, have you done a few testdrives already and what was the result? I'm very curious about that.
  14. olov

    olov New Member

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    Yes I connected to a yellow cable on a medium white connector at the HV harness in the back of the car for the Ready/Ign signal thus avoiding the glove compartment hazzle. I have still not decided if I need the on/off button on a regular basis so right now it is btw. the front seats. Works for me. I have run a couple of weeks a few 100km and on average 0.1 l/10km less from 0.46 to 0.36 seen 0.33, never above 0.4. I can notice that AC pull significant current on a warm day and so do washer wipers.... I charge at work and go home and back only in city with short 70 km/h stretch and to the summer house weekend 100km round trip mixed with highway and I am not the only driver either. Have fun with your new magic box. Olov
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  15. Flaninacupboard

    Flaninacupboard Senior Member

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    For anyone interested, i'm still waiting on delivery of the kit, and some other purchasers (floyd and oli) have tipped me off to the fact that enginer won't actually deliver it to me. They put it on a boat headed for england and then let you sort it out :mad:

    It looks like an extra £400+ for import duty/handling/unloading/customs clearance/whatever other crap importers have to deal with, on top of the $250 already paid for shipping, and a load of stress and hassle i really don't want. plus of course VAT on top of all that. oh, and i need to go and pick the thing up from "the port". Who knows where that is (probably Calais knowing my luck...)

    Their customer service is piss poor, and they're not interested in improving it or even listening to their customer's feedback. They are like the polar opposite of Toyota, which is kind of ironic...

    I had been considering trying to get set up as an installer assuming my install goes ok, but now there's no chance.
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  16. GrumpyCabbie

    GrumpyCabbie Senior Member

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    So they don't put your address on it? Or do they just send it to a port for your attention? Does it mean you're now liable for a full dollop of import duties?

    I'd still be interested to hear how you get on with it all, though your experience so far has done little to convince me to follow your lead.
  17. AkustaVirtaa

    AkustaVirtaa Sähköistäjä

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    Mmm... Isn’t this just normal with all big packages? Remember you not ordering something like music CD from US.

    I’m not sure how things go over there, but in here you always have to deal all duty/handling/unloading/customs clearance and whatever costs yourself. Specially if you are ordering something big (expensive) from outside EU. Even if you are using UPS or any other parcel service.

    Those US guys can’t know what different taxes or customs cost in your country can be?

    I have no mean to be negative just informative… I hope everything comes home in good shape. :)
  18. Flaninacupboard

    Flaninacupboard Senior Member

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    Yes you're probably right, i'm sure importers deal with this stuff all the time. I am not an importer, i am a regular consumer. I bought a dishwasher recently, that's a similar siaze and weight to the enginer kit, and it was made in and shipped from china. Did it cost me £500+ to get it into the country? no. the entire dishwasher was £200.

    It seems what they should do is send a few container loads to somewhere within the EU and process one lot of paperwork, and then despatch via DHL or whoever. Might be more hassle and cost for them, but each customer saves hundreds of pounds/euros, and gets a better experience. As it is customer who -may- have ordered probably won't, partly because of the extra cost, partly because of uncertainty of how to deal with an import agent (i have no idea), but mainly because the company has been purposefully deceitful about those costs.
  19. AkustaVirtaa

    AkustaVirtaa Sähköistäjä

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    At least there is something good from EU, you won’t get these problems (usually) in free trade in Europe. ;)

    I am thinking to order kit from Enginer without batteries, but I have to wait how usage taxes about hybrid cars change in Finland. Why they can't make same tax laws in whole EU?
  20. pbui

    pbui Member

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    wow, i kinda wish we have $7/gal price here in the States, it would result in a paradigm shift.

    At $3/gal here and the Prius uses about $0.02/mile in electricity ($0.10/kwh). And if you have solar panels; the recoup for the panel gets better too.

    My 2004 Prius price probably goes up; and my bicycle trips would worth so much more !
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