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phev kit questions

Discussion in 'Prius PHEV Plug-In Modifications' started by __-_-_-__, Apr 3, 2012.

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  1. __-_-_-__

    __-_-_-__ Junior Member

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    so, I'm a newbie here trying to convert my prius to phev.

    I've searched around, read a lot of posts, and came to the conclusion that the most reliable diy kit is the plug-in supply one. Am I right?


    But I've a lot of questions....
    I'm really puzzled about this... What type of plugs there are for charging? what is supplied? What about home charging? do they provide a charging station? will it work on a EU 220V socket? What's the charging time?
    What about fast charging? will it work? what cables do I need?


    What about the batteries? Can I use other batteries? for example for having more then 10KW then they offer. Or to save some weight. Eventually some money. I've some thundersky LIFEPO4 around I can use.


    What range can be expected with continuous 70mph drive in EV mode only (10KW kit)?


    Can I convert the PHEV later to LPG? won't have any problems? could I have problems placing the LPG container? Because with the 10kw kit I couldn't access the spare tyre location where I could place it. I would have to place it above the batteries.


    Could I add later a solar roof like this one (can't post links) w w w dot solarelectricalvehicles dot com to work with the PHEV kit?


    What kind of special maintenance, if any, has to be done to the phev?


    Anything important I should known?


    Thanks for any help
  2. miscrms

    miscrms Plug Envious Member

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    Welcome!

    If you're not an experienced tinkerer, the plugin supply kit is probably a good option. The 4kw kit is a bit of an unknown, but the 10kW seems well proven. If you drive a lot of highway miles you might also consider the 8kW Enginer, as the low and slow output of their kit seems to work best blended with gas over a long period of time. For maximum EV driving it seems like Plugin Supply is the best bet as it can put out a lot more current.

    There are several European converters here on the list, so hopefully they will chime in with that info.

    PIS does sell their kit without batteries, so sourcing batteries locally might be a good idea for shipping to Europe. You just need to make sure that the ones you chose can tolerate charge/discharge spikes in the 120-160 A range. This shouldn't be too hard with a 10kW pack, as you're probably looking at 40Ah or better cells so this would only be 3-4C. With 20Ah or less in a 4-5kWh pack its much more challenging.

    Driving at 70mph will significantly reduce range. The power requirement to sustain 70mph is almost double that of 50mph, just by the nature of the physics at work. I believe that's also right at the top end of what the Prius electric drive can do, so it will take time (and burn a lot of power) to get up to speed and will only maintain that speed under favorable conditions. If you want/need to drive 70mph you're probably better off running blended gasoline/electric and settling for improved gas mileage (probably about 1/2 the consumption you'd get otherwise).

    Having room for LPG too could be challenging, you'd have to plan carefully.

    The solar roof is very cool, but not very helpful in practice. The panel from the link you posted is rated at 215W. So under ideal conditions, it will generate 215Wh for each hour of full sun. That is about enough power to drive 1 mile on electric. In most places you would be doing well to get 4-5 miles worth of power per day on a good clear summer day. In general if you want to combine solar with your PHEV you are much better off putting the panels on your house and feeding power into the grid all day to offset the power you'll charge into the battery. Fully offsetting a 10kWh plugin would require about 2400W of panels in Portugal according to PVWatts, more than 10 times what you can fit on the Prius roof.
    3 people like this.
  3. __-_-_-__

    __-_-_-__ Junior Member

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    First of all, thank you so much for your help.

    I do travel a lot @about 100km/h. I would love to drive that distance in EV. so even if half range, 40km, at that speed it will be well worth it. Maximum I was planing to drive in EV is 50km on a single charge. And I can almost always charge when I reach my destination.
    That's why I'm not that interested in the engineer kit.

    I've to check some EU contractors, but I don't find any plugin supply one. I would love it since I would avoid HUGE custom taxes. If someone one knowns please tell me.
    I've to also check if I can get batteries around here to make 10kw.

    About LPG, the kit with the fuel weights about 100kg. That adding to the 220kg of the kit.
    Weight might be a problem... Also my problem is about safety and if I can place the LPG tank along the battery pack. But anyway let's not focus on this just yet, I don't even started to make the phev conversion...

    About the solar roof. yes I do understand that it doesn't charge the pack. I was just hoping it was a way of prolonging the range. 5miles a day of free energy is really good.
    Making some calculations, in optimum conditions, I would save about 260€ per year using the solar roof. Not economically worth it but then, LPG is cheaper then PHEV anyway. It's not always about money. But one of my goals is to drop the monthly costs at max. Seams like a good DIY project. But anyway let's not focus on this.

    1st step, understanding very well the charging and plug system.
    I've searched aroud and I've found that fast charge stations here use mennekes VDE-AR-E 2623-2-2.

    CAN'T POST LINKS OR PICTURES UNFORTUNATELY TO SHOW THE SOCKETS AND PLUGS.
    wikipedia = VDE-AR-E_2623-2-2#Type 2:_VDE-AR-E_2623-2-2
    pic1:
    cenex co uk /Portals/0/PiP /charging_point_procurement_files /mennekes-J1772b .jpg
    pic2:
    electromaps. com/ fotos/ 1f4fbca668779723889f023d8e414557.JPG


    Could I fast charge using these connectors?

    I've yet to understand what other type of connector is available.
  4. 3prongpaul

    3prongpaul 6 Gen1s, 3 Gen2s

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    Please remember if you have a Gen2 Prius (2004-2009) the limiting factor of EV performance is the Toyota Inverter and electric motors inside the transmission. You'll have a max of approx 30hp in "all electric mode" no matter how large your battery pack is.

    Driving without ICE is challenging;
    Can you accelerate a Prius quickly with 30hp? NO
    Can you sustain freeway speed and go up inclines with 30hp? NOT WELL.

    Best to drive in "blended mode" and be happy with 100mpg.
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  5. NortTexSalv04Prius

    NortTexSalv04Prius Active Member

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    As far as solar roof prius alot people dismiss doing this mod out of hand.I am still on the fence with doing that mod though..
    You do have the following issues
    You need a high watt PV panel for Prius roof. The cost (example) say 260 watt PV panel is $430 plus ship. The mounting, wiring, charge control, labor, and sundry are all extra.....
    Silver Pine Mica likes this.
  6. __-_-_-__

    __-_-_-__ Junior Member

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    And how about the gen III prius? would it have the same limitations? Because, there's no way to get a cheaper PHEV. The volt is insanely expensive.

    There's already many cars around with a 60-80mpg consumption. If the kit only offers 100mpg it's not worth it.
  7. cproaudio

    cproaudio Speedlock Overrider

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    Gen III's electric motor is more powerful however it is still designed to run in blended mode. Adding PHEV kit will not turn it into an electric car. It will however, boost the mileage when driving in blended mode. Instead of getting 55mpg, you're doubling it until the pack runs out of juice.
    There's only 1 gasoline car that can manage 60mpg if you try and that's a Prius c. In Portugal, there maybe other diesel cars that can routinely get 60-80mpg. However none of those cars are available in the US. The VW and Audi TDIs are the next closest runner up at 50mpg freeway with careful driving.
    PiP struggles to get 1000 miles per tank as it is. Aftermarket plugin kits with larger battery packs can easily manage well over 100mpg for longer distance. A $5,000 plugin kit that can out perform the stock plugin is well worth the money. I don't look at spending $5,000 to get $5,000 in fuel savings return. I spend $5,000 for the ability to drive a car that gets 100+MPG. fuel cost savings is just an added bonus.
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  8. NortTexSalv04Prius

    NortTexSalv04Prius Active Member

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    You are a reseller for enginer
  9. telmo744

    telmo744 HSD fanatic

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    Hi there!
    Those MPGs cannot be in real world. Even for diesels is hard( nearly impossible) to get there.
    Only if MPG UK you meant.
    ;)
  10. __-_-_-__

    __-_-_-__ Junior Member

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    Let me put this numbers into SI units.
    Real world average consumption.
    Of course this list is bigger if we consider there's several engines for the same model. So, models that have an average consumption of 5.2, will have some engines that actually consume LESS. For example, several BMW, Mercedes, Alfa Romeo etc.

    Toyota Prius (1452) 5.2

    Diesel:
    1 Audi A2 3L (73) 3.5
    2 Volkswagen Lupo 3L (158) 3.7
    3 Smart Fortwo (1518) 4.2
    4 Citroen C1 (42) 4.2
    5 Citroen AX (39) 4.6
    6 Seat Arosa (60) 4.7
    7 Peugeot 106 (48) 4.7
    8 Toyota iQ (32) 4.7
    9 Citroen Saxo (36) 4.8
    10 Citroen C3 Pluriel (14) 4.8
    11 Toyota Yaris (153) 4.9
    12 Audi A2 (304) 4.9
    13 Renault Twingo (49) 4.9
    14 Fiat Panda (36) 4.9
    15 Fiat 500 (36) 4.9
    16 Fiat Punto Evo (111) 4.9
    17 Citroen C2 (102) 4.9
    18 Volkswagen Lupo (95) 5.0
    19 Lancia Ypsilon (16) 5.0
    20 Nissan Micra (27) 5.0
    21 Kia Picanto (18) 5.1
    22 Citroen C3 (135) 5.1
    23 Mazda 2 (40) 5.1
    24 Skoda Fabia (894) 5.1
    25 Renault Clio (361) 5.1
    26 Toyota Yaris Verso (12) 5.1
    27 Fiat Punto (125) 5.2
    28 Volkswagen Polo (1115) 5.2
    29 Nissan Note (32) 5.2
    30 Ford Fiesta (489) 5.2
    31 Dacia Sandero (28) 5.2
    32 Mini Mini Clubman (40) 5.2
    33 Volkswagen Fox (24) 5.3
    34 Opel Corsa (676) 5.3
    35 Suzuki Swift (27) 5.3
    36 Audi A1 (40) 5.3
    37 Dacia Logan (40) 5.3
    38 Peugeot 205 (43) 5.3
    39 Smart Forfour (161) 5.4
    40 Peugeot 309 (13) 5.4
    41 Renault Modus (51) 5.4
    42 Ford Fusion (50) 5.4
    43 Mini Mini Cooper D (85) 5.4
    44 Seat Cordoba (59) 5.4
    45 Peugeot 206 (334) 5.4
  11. telmo744

    telmo744 HSD fanatic

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    Name the first family compact for comparison apples-to-apples. ;)

    And besides that, keep in mind that every liter of diesel fuel holds 11% more energy than one liter of petrol. Of course the consumers only have to pay for it, but if you check the international prices (Roterdam/Europe) you find diesel more expensive than gasoline - before taxes.
  12. __-_-_-__

    __-_-_-__ Junior Member

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    It really doesn't matter because I'm the end consumer and in my country diesel is about 10%-15% cheaper then gasoline.

    And yes I do agree we have to compare apples to apples but then you have no other phev to compare. I'm not comparing the 45.000€ Volt to anything. I could by 2 prius with that money.

    But let's take the comparison even further. Let's see this nice apples...
    BMW 316d 4.5L
    Renault Laguna 1.5 DCI 5.1L
    Peugeot 508 1.6 HDi FAP 112 5.1L
    Ford Mondeo 1.6 TDCi 4.3L
    Hyundai i40 1.7 CRDI 5.1L


    What is the real consumption of a converted gen II prius with a 10kw battery pack?
    if it is 100mpg (2.352L/100km if I'm right) it's not worth it.
  13. NortTexSalv04Prius

    NortTexSalv04Prius Active Member

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    I will attempt to seperate some of your questions and issues. First the PHEV modification cost payback mindset may not always work. The cost recovery is dependent on variables. That said if you are wanting PHEV purely based on economic,financial, monetary motive you are going to be or get frustated . Enginer,PIS, and etc use improve mpg with PHEV as a marketing tool. I think eveyone would like to have 99.9mpg on their Prius dashboad however getting their is a journey that will have challenges.
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  14. __-_-_-__

    __-_-_-__ Junior Member

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    so, in the end, how many mpg realistically can be achieved with the best phev kit?
  15. telmo744

    telmo744 HSD fanatic

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    Those apples get lower MPGs, don't they? :D
    The higher is Mondeo (latest engine, since only they had 1.8 avaliable til 2011), and all of them less powered than 3Gen Prius...and manual shift...although roomier...

    In my point of view, blending electricity in with a kit can significantly push up MPG, but is limited to the amount of power being asked...in city, you might go even higher than 100MPG, as long as you (can) keep ICE from kicking in.
    Maybe in sprimonitor you can check...

    from 2,27l/100 to 2,72l/100 in smaller batts:
    Details: Toyota - Prius - Prius plug-in 4,5 kWh - Spritmonitor.de (4,5kwh)
    Details: Toyota - Prius - Toyota Prius Plugin PHEV - Spritmonitor.de (4kwh)
    Details: Toyota - Prius - Prius 3G Plugin - Spritmonitor.de (4kwh)


    And 3,61l/100 with...no kit...
    Details: Toyota - Prius - Active - Spritmonitor.de
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  16. cproaudio

    cproaudio Speedlock Overrider

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    Best commercial PHEV kit would be either PIS's 10KW kit or PICC's 6.1KW kit. Best home brew kit would be pEEf's Prius http://priuschat.com/forums/private-sales/105056-plug-in-prius-40-mile-range-rare.html
    PIS's kit can return 40-50 miles AER city. PICC's kit can return up to 25 miles AER. pEEf's 6.5KW kit can do 25 miles AER highway and 40 miles AER city. All 3 kits have the ability to prevent the ICE from coming on during normal traffic acceleration. pEEf's kit can prevent the ICE from coming on during full throttle. All 3 kits should able to return anywhere from 100mpg up to 4 digit MPG. A tank of gas will last a couple thousand miles easily possibly a whole year.
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  17. miscrms

    miscrms Plug Envious Member

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    Part of what you need to think about or clarify if you've thought already is what you are trying to achieve. That greatly affects the tradeoff, because it affects the weighting of each relative factor. If you don't need the space/power features of the Prius then its reasonable to compare it to smaller more efficient vehicles. If you do, its not. If you want to reduce overall petroleum consumption, diesel does have a penalty as 1 gal of diesel can be cracked to make > 1 gallon of gasoline. If you want greatest overall energy efficiency going as electric as possible makes sense, but doing 1/2 your trip all electric and 1/2 on gas or running the whole trip blended will yield the same result. If you want to shift from imported oil to domestic electricity similar is true. If cost is an important factor its hard to make a PHEV come out ahead of a smaller efficient diesel in a country where diesel is still cheaper. If reducing GHG and other emissions is a priority electric with home solar is really hard to beat, and diesel has penalties. Etc, Etc.

    Just to clarify IMHO the PIS kit or similar will still usually out perform the Enginer kit in blended mode. With the 5kW inverter the Enginer kit can only deliver ~6.7 hp. At highway speeds, that's probably only 1/3 to 1/4 of the total power required. If you drive long/far enough it would average out, but you'd have to drive ~112 miles at 70mph to completely use up 8kWh of stored energy. At that point it would be a wash, except for the inherent efficiency loss of the converter itself (5-10% maybe?). For any shorter distance before recharging a system without the power limitation of the converter will yield better results from the same amount of stored energy. With the full ~30hp of electric drive at work, the gas engine will only be used occasionally for acceleration and hills and to lightly supplement cruising power at high speed. The electric will do the majority of the work. Its hard to give definite answers as results will vary a lot with speed, traffic, terrain, driving style, temperature, etc. The only real advantage to the Enginer kit (again IMHO) is cost, and that advantage is degrading as the costs of other systems come down. A DIY 8kWh conversion can probably be done for at or below the same cost. The PIS 10kW costs ~55% more, but gives you 25% more battery and you may be able to more effectively use that battery as discussed above.

    For the situations you've described so far you might be better off thinking about a true EV like the Leaf. A long range, full power electric PHEV will pretty much always be more expensive than a BEV, as you are essentially paying for two complete drive systems. If the goal is really to maximize electric range why not go all out :)

    On the solar roof front its less about the small area and more about cost efficiency. A solar roof customized for the Prius cost several thousand dollars last time I had seen numbers tossed around. That's a lot to spend for ~200W. That same money spent on solar for the home would probably give you 5-10 times the amount of power generated easily. You can't really just stick a standard $300 panel on the roof without significantly disturbing the aerodynamics, which will likely cost you more energy than it produces. The electronics to couple the solar energy into the hybrid system are also non-standard, which will likely make them expensive, or inefficient, or both. Even if cost were similar, you'd be better off with the panel fixed in a location with good sun exposure rather than taking the efficiency penalties associated with having the panel at a non-optimal angle and subject to changing shading conditions. That could easily make the home install 2x more efficient.
  18. miscrms

    miscrms Plug Envious Member

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    Note that per PIS federal testing the kits that keep the PHEV battery in parallel after depleted see an improvement in stock fuel economy due to the reduced internal resistance of the battery. For the PIS testing this was an improvement from 50mpg (4.7l/100km) to 63.5 mpg (3.7l/100km).

    50km at 100kph is probably a lot more feasible than 100km @ 70mph. 100kph is more like 62mph I believe.

    A rough estimate of power required to cruise at a given speed can be derived from the EV Calculator here:
    EV Calculator
    Assuming the +300 lbs of the 10kW PIS kit in a Gen 2 Prius, cruising power is estimated at:
    40mph - 9.7 hp
    50mph - 14.3 hp
    60mph - 20.2 hp
    70mph - 27.8 hp
    80mph - 37.4 hp
    PIS reports their EV range for the 10kW kit as 50 miles. This is likely a bit optimistic, as a guess lets say its figured at 40mph steady cruising. To cruise at 60mph, power required is 2.08 times higher so range would be ~24 miles. At 70mph it would be 17.4 miles.

    So for 50km @ 60mph (96.5kph) the first 38.6 km would be electric, and the remaining 11.4 km would be run on gas at 3.7l/100km. If its running somewhat blended over a bit more range the result would be basically the same. Total fuel consumed would be 0.4218 litres, resulting in an overall trip fuel economy of 0.84l/100km. At 70mph (112.6 kph) the first 28 km would be electric. Gas fuel economy would likely suffer ~15% (note this would be true for any vehicle), so the remaining 22 km would be run at ~ 4.3l/100km so total fuel used would be 0.946 litres. Resulting fuel economy for the trip would then be 1.892 l/km.

    60 vs. 70mph may not seem like much, but its interesting to see such a huge difference in economy from 0.89l/100km to 1.89l/100km! In many ways this speaks to the challenges of very low consumption vehicles, and particularly PHEVs. As consumption gets very small, small factors can make a big difference. That's part of what makes it difficult to estimate real world performance of any given individual on any given trip.

    Note that this is a mathematical estimate based on lots of assumptions that may or may not be valid, made by an individual that may or may not know what he's doing. As usual YMMV :)

    Note also that this is only taking fuel consumption into account. If you only care about reducing petroleum consumption, this is a valid approach. Otherwise the electricity cost, energy, emissions etc must be factored in to get at the final relative efficiency.
  19. usnavystgc

    usnavystgc Die Hard DIYer

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    miscrms,
    Thanks for all the great insight.
  20. Frank06

    Frank06 Junior Member

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    To echo what others have said: your consumption depends on your usage. If I drive 20 miles at 25 mph an you drive 20 miles at 50 mph your energy consumption will be four times what mine is. Stating consumption figures by themselves is meaningless. I'm sure that some users of PIS's kit drive all-electric, all the time. Others have different needs and their consumption will be higher.
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