VIDEO: Volvo Charges XC90 Plug-In Using…Other Cars?
Special Hydraulic Roadway Pad Produces Electricity For SUV
The Volvo XC90 T8 Twin Engine is an impressive piece of engineering, getting power from two sources: a turbo- and supercharged 2.0L I-4 and two electric motors that give the luxury SUV more than 400 hp. And now, Volvo says the XC90 is also powered by other cars.
At first, we thought that tagline was a late April Fools’ Day joke, but the accompanying video proves it to be true. Using a roadway pad fit with several hydraulic tubes, Volvo was able to harness the power of passing vehicles to charge the XC90’s 9.2-kWh battery. The pad was installed on a highway in the California desert, and as vehicles crossed over it, their weight forced fluid in the hydraulic tubes to generate electricity.
That electricity went straight into the battery of the white XC90 T8 parked in a futuristic-looking charging station on the side of the road. A screen illuminated as each car passed by, thanking its driver for the electricity.
The cheeky marketing stunt is cute, but it also raises some questions. Could it be possible to fit hydraulic lines like this on other roads and then link them to the electrical grid? Could that potential energy be harnessed reliably?
Whether or not that kind of power generation is feasible, at the very least, it was a fun one-off ploy to get Volvo’s high-performance hybrid some extra attention, no doubt bolstering its green cred in the face of other eco-conscious SUVs.
Source: Volvo Cars, via YouTube