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- Feb 20, 2012
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YouTuber puts gas generator in Tesla so he doesn’t have to plug it in on road trip
A YouTuber decided to extend the range on his electric car by installing a gas generator in the back of his Tesla for a lengthy road trip.
Matt Mikka, who goes by the name Warped Perception on YouTube, last year decided to modify his Tesla and add in a gas generator which could charge up the car while on the move.
He then decided to take his Tesla Model S on an 1,800 mile journey with the self-imposed challenge that he wasn't allowed to stop off at any electric car charging points along the way.
While Matt liked his Tesla he didn't enjoy having to stop and charge it up on a regular basis since electric need much longer waiting times than a gas-guzzling car where you just fill 'em up and get going again.
YouTuber Matt Mikka added a gas generator to his Tesla to see if he could take it on a road trip. Credit: YouTube/Warped Perception
The Tesla Model S is one of the longest range electric cars out there and can make it about 405 miles on a single charge, so as far as range is concerned it was never going to make it all the way on Mike's road trip without stopping for a recharge.
Mike told Insider he'd spent five years planning the journey, with a year and a half of that occupied by designing the gas generator so it'd fit into his Tesla and charge the batteries.
He figured out how to have his 'cordless Tesla' be charging even while parked up, so the battery would be getting juice while on the move and at other times as well.
In the end he made it all the way with his Tesla, making it 1,395 miles further than the car's recommended range to reach his finish line.
Getting the gas generator into the car took a lot of effort and ultimately this experiment probably won't go down as a success. Credit: YouTube/Warped Perception
Of course not stopping to recharge the car was one thing but Matt did have to stop at a gas station along the way to refuel his generator.
He also had to stop his car for around five to six hours a day so the gas generator could charge the battery.
Matt also ran into trouble with the police at one point as he was pulled over for driving too slowly on the highway while trying to cut down on the Tesla's energy consumption.
There are a few problems with this idea, notably that he's essentially invented a hybrid car when those already exist so while it might have greater range it still guzzles gas.
On top of that the gas generator is pretty noisy which makes for an annoying factor during a trip, and it's thirsty enough that any environmental benefit accrued from driving an electric car was wiped out.
In the end, Matt admitted the modified car was 'basically useless' as it still needed plenty of time sitting around waiting to be charged up by the gas generator.
The YouTuber confirmed that he's gone back to the drawing board in the hopes of figuring out a better design which will give him 'the ultimate road trip car'.
Sometimes you've got to fail to succeed.