There is a recent article (from an Axion supporter) stating that we should move towards converting a lot of vehicles to dual-mode: electricity or gas. It would be something like the Volt but it would be a bit more low tech. Instead of the series configuration, you could run on electricity or gas. Presumably, people will run on electricity for the first 40 miles or so and then switch to gas when your batteries run low. If you plug-in every night, you'd get the first 40 miles on electricity.
Here is the article:
He talks about conversion kits, but upon searching, I realized no conversion such kit is available. Has anyone done such a dual-mode privately?
I did find an article that says Axion did one such conversion:
Axion has converted one pickup truck into a dual-mode vehicle that uses a 40-kilowatt electric motor for the front transaxle and a truck’s internal combustion engine for the rear axle. “The battery gives it a 50-mile range, and if you need to tow something, you turn the internal combustion engine on,” Buiel said. He estimated that he could produce a kit to convert pickups to battery power for less than $10,000.
It sounds like a very interesting system (the dual mode ability) . . . I think they should document their conversion and put the info out there for the DIY community.