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Volvo Highway Robbery XC90 : Literally Seal Energy From Other Cars

Posted in connected cars, and Technology

Volvo has a new ultra-luxe SUV on the market — the plug-in hybrid version of the well-received XC90, featuring 400 horsepower generated from a four-cylinder turbo paired to an electric motor. Volvo came up with a particularly creative one.

Volvo highway robbery XC90

The energy capturing system Volvo built used hydraulic power to transfer power from the road to the XC90. A mat containing tubes filled with water was placed on the road; when a car drove over the mat, it compressed the tubes and drove the water into a roadside tank that converted the hydraulic energy into electric energy.

Volvo highway robbery XC90

In turn, the generator would dribble a little bit of power into a shiny white XC90 T8 parked by the side of the road. A jumbotron connected to the setup taunted each driver with messages like “Thanks for the extra miles, Jeep,” and “Thank you, blue Volkswagen.”

‘Every time a car passed over the mat, it filled the tank of the XC90’.

Volvo highway robbery XC90

It’s silly, and it’s definitely not a practical way to charge a bunch of cars — but it probably served its function, which was to draw the attention of every single driver who drove over that water-filled mat. In the US, the XC90 T8 starts at $68,100.


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