The automobile world is adopting to brand new technologies and a surprising new addition is the Toyota Prius Plug-in which might feature a solar panel mounted on it.
While it may not find its way to the United States, the design is set to be implemented in the Japanese and the European version of the car. There are specific guidelines for a car and it is supposed to pass the rollover crash tests. If solar panels are mounted on top, they won’t pass this which is why the manufacturers have refrained from trying to introduce the new technology to audience in USA.
Explaining their position as to why such panels can’t withstand rollover crashes, Koji Toyoshima, chief engineer at Toyota said that they are yet to develop photovoltaic cells in resin which won’t crash in case of a rollover. Only when they are able to develop solar panels with resins that don’t shatter, they can pass crash requirements in the United States to launch the car.
“We are really excited to bring this innovative idea. It saves lot of power and allows passengers to make use of natural climatic conditions. In places like Arizona or California, temperature is always on the higher side. When the Toyota Prius plug-in is equipped with solar panels, they can charge on the go. It enables the electric motor to run at its maximum efficiency and also make little use of the gasoline engine,” said Toyoshima during the Japanese launch.
Whenever the car is stationary, the solar panels will start charging batteries. However, when it is on the move, they will continue to power the lights, power windows and the air conditioning system. The Prius plug-in will have at least ten percent more efficiency in terms of performance and energy conservation. Toyota executives opine that when the technology reaches new heights they will be able to implement more powerful solar panels and generate much higher output.
Electrified cars are the future and with such new additions, they are here to stay. Introducing them in the United States is a primary goal that Toyota wants to accomplish with its Prius Plug-in. When they successfully manage to do so, it might impress other automobile manufacturers to follow suit and adopt the design. But, in order to do so, they have to innovate the type of materials used and make them shatter proof so as to pass guidelines set in the country.