University of Sussex
Product Design Show 2012
The Amex Stadium: 06 June - 09 June
New Designers, London: 04 - 06 July
Hybrid Wheel System
Michael Hollins

Motor, Battery and Control system to convert vehicles to electric power

The Hybrid Wheel concept is a product package designed to allow existing internal combustion vehicles to be converted to electric power. The concept arose from analysing the reasons for the lower than expected sales of electric cars - these were found to be dependance, cost and choice. The need was seen for a product that allowed consumers to own a Range Extending Hybrid (a vehicle powered by electricity but containing an engine to charge the batteries, negating the worry of running out of charge) at a low cost. The product itself consists of a 20kW electric motor to mount inside one rear wheel of the consumer’s existing vehicle, a control unit to allow the driver to switch between normal and electric drive using the same throttle pedal, and a modular battery system to mount in the boot that allows for varying electric journey ranges. Government research has indicated that 68% of car journeys are under 5 miles, and using just two Lithium-Ion battery packs (each smaller than a box of cereal, weighing just 2.3kg) a range of 6.2 electric only miles can be achieved. The Hybrid Wheel system uses existing and available technology to provide consumers with a low cost (under £2,000 cost price) and desirable route to the much lauded advantages of Electric Vehicles