Here’s some good news for DIYers. If it ever passed through your head to convert your actual car to an electric one, here are some Orange County guys that already did that and sell Prius conversion kits so you can do it at home, too.
Jungle Motors is their name, and, yes, this is free commercial, because their technology has just evolved from lead-acid batteries to LiFePO4. They have been converting PT Cruisers and old Porsches to all-electric vehicles (I don’t know their actual performance, it all depends on how many batteries they put in), and now they specialized on enhancing Priuses.
Starting February 2009, their LiFePO4 converted Priuses will deliver over 40 miles of all-electric mode. The new converted Prius will have three modes: Normal mode – the standard Prius consumption, Enhanced mode – over 100 mpg, and battery-only mode, acting as a full electric vehicle. All your needs of normal city driving are generally under 40 miles, so this conversion should be enough for the moment, until you buy a dedicated full electric vehicle.
Still, if I think about it, this is a good option and makes the Prius a more viable option than the standard one, and I’d rather choose this plug-in Prius over an all-electric car, because I know for sure this one isn’t going to let me down with its battery dead, in the middle of some fields or intersection. The price is also not very high: $4,995.