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Hybrid Motorhomes anyone ?


tonyishuk

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Just left a Caravan Club site, and I was surprised to see several electric hybrid tow cars connected up and charging, otherwise I would not have noticed. Then were mainly Mitsubishi SUVs pulling quite large caravans.

 

Just wondering, if the hybrid technology, is going to hit the m/home market at some stage?

 

Rgds

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As I posted on a thread a while back, at the moment it looks like only a matter of time, but then i've never been to good at predicting the future. Will the diesel scandal force the issue? If there's a crackdown on diesel then the manufacturers will be producing hybrids in greater numbers and the prices should come down.
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That will almost certainly push up pitch prices on CC sites as they already include something like £3 just to (supposedly) cover heating, hot water, fridge etc. I objected at the time after seeing huge caravans with ovens, fridges and even heaters in just as huge awnings.

 

This turn of events is another reason why the sites should now be charging (excuse the pun) for metered electricity rather than including a flat charge (excuse the pun) across the board which is usually far in excess of the amount of electricity consumed by the average camper. It is not uncommon on most winter sites in Spain to have metered electricity with, say, the first 4kw included and then a quite reasonable price for each kW used after that.

 

It's a fairer system that would benefit everyone.

 

Davud

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candapack - 2016-07-09 5:52 PM

 

I think it already has, but can't remember any details re make, model etc.

 

Hymer exhibited a prototype hybrid variant of the B578 model at the 2011 Dusseldorf Show.

 

 

There was a good deal of press interest at the time, but the vehicle was never marketed.

 

However, more recently (mid-2015) it was announced that a hybrid version of Ducato was being developed.

 

http://www.bonfiglioli.com/en/mobile/news-media-events/news/bonfiglioli-project-for-innovative-powertrain-for-fiat-ducato-hybrid/

 

An electric hybrid approach adds the weight of an electric motor and battery (approaching 200kg is mentioned for the Ducato project) to a vehicle with a conventional internal-combustion engine. With ‘under 3500kg’ driving-licence restrictions affecting more and more drivers the unavoidable weight penalty inherent in hybrid technology would make it very difficult for a converter to build a reasonably large sub-3500kg hybrid motorhome with a realistic usable payload. Things are bad enough now with just the diesel engine, never mind adding a couple of hundred kilos for the hybrid system.

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Guest pelmetman

The answer is 3 litres of throbbing Essex V6 converted to LPG ;-) ..........no payload issues and very green B-) .........

 

 

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As an engineer working for a large motor manufacturer about 40 years ago, some of my time was spent with one of the most knowledgeable guys in the sphere of engine development.

During the coffee breaks we would talk a lot about engines for the future, and his opinion was that looking into the future, he could see no potential line of development that could power a road vehicle anything like as well as the internal combustion engine powered by liquid fuel.

He was part of the UK team working with the Nader Commission in the States, and he had access to everything.

I can't see anything that changes that position even now. Hybrid vehicles are powered by an internal combustion engine which is able to store a little surplus energy in a battery and the batteries are expensive, heavy, limited in their ability to recharge quickly, and pound for pound don't hold much. They do a job, after a fashion, in reducing pollution in critical areas, but only for relatively short journeys.

If the hybrid is to become viable we need to find an as yet unknown technology that will give us a cheap, light, durable battery that doesn't take up much room. It would be powered by a generator driven by a small, light internal combustion engine operating at a fixed speed, and the engine would need to run most of the time. Such an engine could be very efficient and produce very little pollution, and we have that kind of technology  now.

I have no doubt that someone, somewhere is already at work converting an old milk float into a motorhome and recharging the batteries with a Honda generator.., but I can't imagine that the future lies in that direction.

AGD

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Hybrids are still quite rare and at a relatively early stage in development, the Outlander PHEV is the only main stream vehicle anywhere near 3.5t van size, so there seems a fair way to go as yet, if diesels get stung by tax/emission/congestion charges it will be market driven as operators look to reduce costs. Does it need a breakthrough or just clever programming? as we now have tiny petrol engines powering cars that only a few years ago would have seemed impossible, the technology is old school but the way it is controlled has given us them.
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It may not be so far off. Compared to the energy stored in the standard starter + leisure battery the bank in a hybrid is huge and the existing batteries are not needed saving quite a few kg.

 

Before long the conventional gearbox will not be needed as the IC engine just charges the battery and power is transmitted by cable.with small motors in each wheel saving more weight as there are no propshafts.

 

FX4 motorcaravans with the roof covered in solar panels to help with recharging what more do you want.

 

Oh blast the fuses in my crystal ball have just blown again.

 

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Guest pelmetman
Colin Leake - 2016-07-10 4:03 PM

 

I can't reveal the technology yet but we've had our PVC converted to run on dark matter. Gives us free fuel tax free. The buggers can't tax what they can't see and can't even prove exists!

 

I'm getting the feeling Colin......You have access to a parallel universe? :D ........

 

 

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I have a Vauxhall Ampera. It is not really a hybrid as the engine never powers the wheels. The car weights 1800 kgs and 184 kgs of that is batteries . It has a 1.4 engine in it so when the batteries run out the engine acts as a generator and gives power to the batteries. but never directly to the wheels.

 

It is very aerodynamic unlike a motorhome and the range is effected by either being too cold or too hot.

Best range I have had on battery alone is 54 miles. Worst range on battery alone is 16 miles. But when I use the engine to provide electricity I get about 50mpg.

 

So imagine putting this is a 3500kg wardrobe shaped vehicle. I don't think you are going to get too far on electricity alone.

 

Some how. I do not see it happening any time soon.

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Guest pelmetman
ilreeves - 2016-07-10 9:44 PM

 

It is very aerodynamic unlike a motorhome and the range is effected by either being too cold or too hot.

Best range I have had on battery alone is 54 miles. Worst range on battery alone is 16 miles. But when I use the engine to provide electricity I get about 50mpg.

 

 

That's interesting considering...".Vauxhall claims better than 300mpg for the Ampera in urban use" :D .......

 

They've obviously been to the VW school of psychobabble (lol) ..........

 

 

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pelmetman - 2016-07-10 8:53 PM

 

Colin Leake - 2016-07-10 4:03 PM

 

I can't reveal the technology yet but we've had our PVC converted to run on dark matter. Gives us free fuel tax free. The buggers can't tax what they can't see and can't even prove exists!

 

I'm getting the feeling Colin......You have access to a parallel universe? :D ........

 

 

Indeed I do but I'm afraid I can't reveal any details yet for commercial reasons. Just watch this space!

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Kind of agree - looked heavily into buying a Nissan Leaf and may still one day - But even the most powerful model would only make about 100 miles before re-charge, perhaps less in cold weather. Very nice to drive, lots of torque in full fat mode - also expensive for what they are with appalling resale value.

 

I have had thoughts though that the Nissan Electric Van - The e-NV200 would make an ideal small camper - Romahome style - Probably to sleep 1 - Provided everything was kept light, there are plenty of charging places around now and as long as you could live with the re- charging I think it could work, I would probably sit in the back with a cuppa, only takes 20 mins on a high speed charger. - Oxford City Council use these vans for a lot of their maintenance works around the town.

 

Was wondering if any of the very clever Motorhome builders (which isn't me) who fit out their own vans had thought about it?

 

For me it would become a "life style thing" - If you are prepared to put up with the issues, - mainly like driving around with the low fuel light on all the time and planning the next charge it could work, no petrol, little road tax, cheap servicing, - Or it could be a complete pain, depends upon how you look at it.

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pelmetman - 2016-07-10 9:32 AM

 

The answer is 3 litres of throbbing Essex V6 converted to LPG ;-) ..........no payload issues and very green B-) .........

 

 

I’m aware that you were considering having the ex-Reliant Scimitar Ford motor that was transplanted into your Transit van fitted with an LPG conversion.

 

Did you actually have this done?

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Food for thought.....the batteries for a 45 ton artic would weigh just over 20 tons.....However to reduce the weight to sensible proportions they would run on installed overhead catenaries on all the main roads.

This is a serious Volvo European project!

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Colin Leake - 2016-07-10 10:17 PM

 

pelmetman - 2016-07-10 8:53 PM

 

Colin Leake - 2016-07-10 4:03 PM

 

I can't reveal the technology yet but we've had our PVC converted to run on dark matter. Gives us free fuel tax free. The buggers can't tax what they can't see and can't even prove exists!

 

I'm getting the feeling Colin......You have access to a parallel universe? :D ........

 

 

Indeed I do but I'm afraid I can't reveal any details yet for commercial reasons. Just watch this space!

 

Popped into a different parallel universe yesterday to top up on dark matter and bumped into a Mr J Corbin. Apparently he realy does live in a Parallel Universe as many of us suspected!

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pelmetman - 2016-07-10 9:32 AM

 

The answer is 3 litres of throbbing Essex V6 converted to LPG ;-) ..........no payload issues and very green B-) .........

 

 

No problems with the cashier rushing out of the garage, waving company rules and regs, shouting "No fillee gas bottle here !!"" then ?

 

:D

 

Rgds

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Guest pelmetman
Derek Uzzell - 2016-07-11 2:44 PM

 

pelmetman - 2016-07-10 9:32 AM

 

The answer is 3 litres of throbbing Essex V6 converted to LPG ;-) ..........no payload issues and very green B-) .........

 

 

I’m aware that you were considering having the ex-Reliant Scimitar Ford motor that was transplanted into your Transit van fitted with an LPG conversion.

 

Did you actually have this done?

 

Have you not followed my trials and tribulations Derek? 8-) .............

 

But to summarize ;-) .......My agenda was to make something that Mr Ford can not.......ie a fast comfortable and quiet motorway cruiser, that was not only economical, and green, but had a automatic transmission as well ;-) .....

 

It was also a adventure into old technology, which has proved to be somewhat troublesome, and expensive due to having to re awaken old skill sets :-S...........namely 1500 quid to solve a problem that a 3 quid switch would have done 8-) ...........

 

But Fanny is a work in progress, she's currently sat on the MIL drive where she made it without any recourse to the AA B-) ........she's on a waiting list for some remedial work to her bodywork.......once that is done then there is the sound insulation to be done, as once you remove the noise of the banana you get to hear everything else 8-) .........

 

The only fly in the ointment is that now I've retired.........I no longer need a fast comfortable motorway cruising van :-S .........

 

But hey..... I'll need a hobby now I've managed to get the country to leave the EU :D...........

 

PS .....3 litres of throbbing V6 is great fun B-) ........I'm thinking of something similar for old Horace one day >:-) ..........

 

 

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Archiesgrandad - 2016-07-11 9:46 PM

 

As I recall, F1 drivers have about 20 seconds of boost before the battery is depleted.

AGD

 

True but an extra 160hp for 33 seconds will see you a long way down the road and then you'd be slamming on the brakes which will recharge the system if the heat from turbo hasn't already done it. :D

But how about this one.

 

http://www.alphr.com/cars/1001421/bmw-i8-formula-e-safety-car-hands-on-with-the-wirelessly-charged-380hp-hybrid?_mout=1&utm_campaign=alphr_newsletter&utm_medium=email&utm_source=newsletter

 

Fit an auto park button so when you get home it goes over the wireless charger and that will keep many happy, maybe CC could fit induction loop under the hardstandings, might even get richard to rejoin ;-)

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