Volvo is jumping on the plug-in hybrid boat with their ReCharge Concept. The system has the ability to work in any of their models but they choose to use their freshest model, the C30, to showcase the technology at the Frankfurt show.
The ReCharge concept uses four individual electric motors residing at each wheel, thereby giving the Volvo all-wheel-drive that is infinitely adjustable. Power for these electric motors comes from a lithium-ion battery pack that is charged either by a standard, household electrical outlet or a conventional, 1.6-liter engine that works as a generator.
The useful range for the concept in full electric mode will be about 60 miles and Volvo claims that distance is greater than the typical roundtrip commute for nearly eighty percent of Americans.
The Swedish carmaker also claims that the batteries will outlast the useful life of the car. It takes about three hours to fully charge the batteries but a quick, one-hour charge gives the two-door hatchback around a thirty-mile range before the gasoline engine is called upon for energy. Performance is pretty good for a car that is this friendly on the environment: Volvo claims a 0-62 mph time of nine seconds and a top speed of 100 mph. CO2 emissions are said to be sixty-six percent lower than the best hybrids on sale today.