If you're sick of high fuel prices, Carnegie Mellon is running a car conversion project that takes gasoline-powered Hondas and makes them all electric.
The automaker showed off an electric Fit last year that can travel 100 miles per charge, but if you want a greener Civic, the CMU Robotics Institute's ChargeCar Electric Vehicle Conversion Project might be for you.
Researchers such as Illah Nourbakhsh of the institute's Create Lab work with local mechanics in converting Civics. At an open house near CMU on March 25, they will unveil a 2002 Civic EX four-door sedan that's been electrified.
The Civic's conventional powertrain has been replaced with a 35-horsepower electric motor and 33 lithium-iron-phosphate batteries.
According to a CMU release, the car can drive more than 40 miles in mixed urban and highway driving, and has a top speed of more than 70 miles per hour (CMU would not specify an exact number).
The project has details on the conversion of a 2005 Honda Civic LX with the same stats; charging takes about 10 hours. Check out the photo gallery here.
How much does conversion cost? Jobs vary, but a CMU official said the best estimate he's seen is $17,000 or more. Ouch. … Read more