Toyota Adds Solar Power To Hybrid

from the what's-wrong-with-wind-power? dept

Toyota, already considered a leader in producing hybrid gas-electric vehicles is apparently preparing to make that hybrid a bit more hybrid: it's going to add solar panels to some models, using the solar energy to power air conditioning. It's not much, but it's a start. I've actually been fascinated with solar vehicles since the fifth grade (yikes) when I convinced some engineers at GM to send me some cheap solar panels to build a tiny solar-powered car (Chrysler ignored my letter, Ford sent a form letter in response). While GM had invested in some prototypes and took part in various solar powered car contests, the technology has never been good enough to do very much at a practical level. Now, how long will it be until Toyota figures out a way to use wind power as well?

Filed Under: hybrid cars, prius, solar power
Companies: toyota


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  1. identicon
    Mark Murphy, 7 Jul 2008 @ 5:30pm

    Re: Prius Silly Solar Panel

    One of these days, people will learn to include links when they make claims such as these.

    A Google search on "Prius starter battery drain" turns up nothing -- with the quotes, there are literally 0 matches; without the quotes, I'm not seeing any entries describing the problem, other than a handful of complaints typical of any consumer product.

    Similarly, I see a few complaints about the starter battery on the Camry Hybrid, but nothing out of the ordinary.

    In fact, the only comments I've ever heard about Priuses and the starter battery come from people asking about leaving the car sit for an extended period, in which case they're recommended to turn off the keyless entry system, because that does put a drain on that specific battery.

    If you have links to back up the claim of these "longstanding issues", post them. I own a Prius and therefore have a vested interest in finding out about these things. But you can't just hand-wave about issues, offer no links, and expect people to just take you at face value.

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