A team of MIT engineering students hacked a 1976 Porsche 914 to be fully electric. So far, they've only tested it in parking lots but they estimate that the car should be able to hit 100 mph and run 130 miles before needing a recharge. Now that the car runs, they're working to optimize its efficiency. From the MIT News Office:
Said mechanical engineering graduate student Craig Wildman, "Now we get to take data while we're driving. We can record everything that happens on a laptop, come back and change parameters, and test drive it again." With the Porsche as a test platform, the students can monitor conditions in the car while looking for ways to increase efficiency, performance and range, and to bring down costs...Link
What's next for the electric Porsche? One idea is to modify how the batteries are wired together. "We should be able to change our range and performance characteristics very easily," said Josh Siegel, a freshman who has been restoring cars in imaginative ways since he was 14. The students are also thinking about developing conversion guidelines that will enable others to do what they've done--without the fuss.