Nikhil Khurana, a 23-year-old graduate from IP University in Delhi, has developed a hybrid car conversion kit that can convert any car into a hybrid one, and it costs around Rs. 1 lakh. Hybrid cars utilize more than one source of energy – like fuel and electricity.
With the view towards promoting the use of clean fuel, the Delhi government has already exempted CNG and hybrid cars from the odd-even scheme.
Nikhil started a company named Folks Motor with two of his friends when he was in college, and developed the kit. Once it is installed, the vehicle can run on either fuel or power modes.
“Once the car is running, the batteries get charged automatically and can be used to drive the vehicle at a maximum speed of 60 km/hour. So, if a car runs around 10 km on fuel then it can run for 4 km on the batteries improving the total mileage by 40 per cent,” he told The Indian Express.
The battery is charged to its maximum limit if the car runs for 70-75 km and gives extra mileage of 30-35 km. The kit also provides an optional automatic drive mode under which once the vehicle is put on electric mode, one can drive it without using gears. According to Nikhil, this is a zero maintenance product and Folks Motor will give a one year warranty on mechanical and electrical performance to the users.
He added that in comparison to CNG kits, which take a lot of space, the hybrid kit takes only 20 percent of that space in the car.
The kit has a published patent and Nikhil claims that other than providing a clean or alternative fuel technology, it also reduces running cost by 30%. He had begun working on this kit in the first semester of his college. He read and researched all the materials available on hybrid vehicles and was ready with the concept in the first six months. But his proposal for collaboration with automobile giants and financiers was turned down by many. Later, his father helped him with the initial funds and they got a manufacturing partner to provide a space for conducting the trials. He did the first trial on a Maruti 800 bought by his sister. By middle of 2015, all the trials were completed. Nikhil will roll out the product by the end of this year.