To improve the range of his Tesla Model S, an ingenious engineer had the idea of integrating a turbo diesel range extender!
The autonomy of electric vehicles is always at the center of discussions. To achieve ever higher goals, and to reassure more and more customers before making them sign an order form, manufacturers have thought of many solutions. Among them is a range extender, in which the heat engine acts as a generator. And that’s the solution this handyman chose for his Tesla Model S.
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An engineer by training and especially gifted with his ten fingers, the YouTuber is right behind him Envelope Perception Series So I decided to integrate a power generator into my Tesla Model S P85D. And not just any engine because he opted for a turbo-diesel block, with very relative integration into the trunk.
Some technical errors
With a power of only 25 hp, which is finally enough to recharge the batteries, this Kohler diesel unit designed for this application is designed to allow the car to extend the autonomy of its electric vehicle. A successful mission in the end, but it was not an easy one.
Besides the particular sound at steady speed and the vibrations generated by the mechanics, the antithesis of the natural quietness of an electric car, cooling concerns did not allow the generator to be fully exploited. Thus, the engineer explained in his video that the engine is only running at 80% of its power. This did not make it possible to achieve the goals set at the beginning.
An upcoming rotary engine for this Tesla Model S.
The Youtuber eventually completed a journey of 2,684 miles, or 4,319 km. In detail, its hybrid system allowed it to achieve a total autonomy of 2,574 kilometers with a fully charged battery and a full tank of diesel. Very good performance for a hybrid made in the back of the garage. On the fuel front, he notes that during his trip he exceeded the equivalent of 77 gallons, which translates to an average of 6.74 L/100 km for the diesel.
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Faced with the shortcomings of his technical solution, this engineer has already planned a new project for his Model S: he will develop a series hybrid system with a supercharged rotary engine as a generator. A mechanical solution has many advantages in the context of this application, as we have already demonstrated by looking at what is being done under the hood of the Mazda MX-30 R-EV. But it is not entirely certain that the final consumption is as interesting as it is with this small diesel block.