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Remove electric car range anxiety with the range extending ebuggy

Here is the ebuggy hitched to an electric car. It’s the simple ideas that hold the most promise. I think this could work in the USA too.

The German ebuggy (it’s lowercase for some reason) is a slick idea. Affordable electric cars have one Achilles heel – range anxiety. Periodicals and television shows have galvanized the perception that you will run out of juice in the middle of a demilitarized zone or have to wait painfully long periods of time to charge up. Forget about long distance trips – they are the domain for those who can afford a Tesla S with the big battery package.

What if you could tow a light rental trailer that plugged into your vehicle and gave you an additional 240 miles?

What we have here is a rather simple idea that has some far-reaching potential. Large countries, like the United States, have massive highways that are dotted with service stations – right? What if, just like renting a propane tank, you could rent one of these little trailers when you are getting low on power and need to cover a lot more distance? According to ebuggy, all you will need is a special towing hitch and a special, prepaid card to get started.

The hitch has a plug-port where you connect the trailer to your electric car. It works like the reverse of plugging in your trailer to your vehicle’s lights. I’m assuming that this will work in the same manner, using your vehicle’s input to trigger its brake-lights. I’m also assuming that it will weigh less than 500 lbs and, thus, not require its own braking system. Keep in mind, that is my assumption.

ebuggy 1

The ebuggy plan is being subsidized by several German/European and private companies as it’s a real solution for the electric future.

If an idea like this matures, it could lead to a smartphone app that tells you where a ebuggy is available and even sets one aside for you. There is no mention of pricing for the rentals, but they seem to believe it would be cheaper to rent the ebuggy than pay for the equivalent in petrol. That would mean, from the North American perspective, 240 miles from a efficient (40 mpg) gasoline car which is about six-gallons of gasoline. So, in gas-cheap America – the ebuggy rental fee with full electricity – would have to total about $25 to be competitive.

In gas-ridiculously-expensive Europe, it makes even more sense.

Here’s the ebuggy idea in a nutshell:

“Hitch up an ebuggy trailer at the first highway service station and exploit the electric energy of the ebuggy range extender.


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