As I dive further into my GoGreenRV study on the future of EV and hybrid-powered RVs, the question of EV toads becomes important. After all, if your towed vehicle (“toad”) had a range of even a 100 miles or so, and never had to be refilled with gasoline, wouldn’t that be great?
But where do you charge your toad? Can you power it from your TV (tow vehicle) trailer connector? Or how about letting the EV toad motor charge its own batteries while you tow it wheels down? And will campgrounds welcome a toad being plugged into an unused outlet on your campsite pedestal without making you pay extra for it? These are all great questions without definitive answers right now.
But what makes this EV unique is that it’s covered with 248 solar panels that allow it to recharge directly from the sun without being plugged into anything!
While that doesn’t sound like a lot of miles per day, consider that its main battery capacity has been upgraded to 54 kWH with an expected range of 200 miles or so WITHOUT the sun. For many of you that don’t drive a lot around home, getting 150 miles of range per week from the sun (for free) could be pretty sweet.
Can the Sion EV also be plugged in to charge?
Yes, it will accept a fast charge to bring the batteries up to 80% SOC (State of Charge) in 30 minutes, or can use a standard Level-1 or Level-2 charger to recharge overnight when plugged into a 20-amp or 50-amp receptacle. Read more on their website.
Can it be towed wheels down?
I don’t know, but I intend to find out. If so, and there’s an easy way to set it up for towing, this could arrive at the campground fully charged.
This should be a software change since most all functions in an EV are drive-by-wire. I don’t know if any of these EV manufacturers are aware of it, but I’m doing my best to let them know about it.
What about regenerative brake charging?
Again, I don’t know, but I’m going to ask. While I don’t think that any current EV technology is set up to use its motor/generator to continuously recharge the EV battery while towing, I’m trying to find out if it can be used as an exhaust brake (exhaust toad?) to apply its own regenerative braking to charge its batteries when you’re going down a long grade, or even stopping at an intersection. Rather than throwing away all that kinetic energy as heat in your brake pads, perhaps it could add a bit of charge to the EV toad batteries each time.
Where to find out more about the Sion EV…
OK, that’s all I know for now. But if this works, then an EV toad could be practical. Take a look at Sono’s website, and I’ll include more information as I get it on my GoGreenRV channel and group. Read more HERE.
Let’s play safe out there….
Mike Sokol is an electrical and professional sound expert with 50+ years in the industry. His excellent book RV Electrical Safety is available at Amazon.com. For more info on Mike’s qualifications as an electrical expert, click here.
For information on how to support RVelectricity and No~Shock~Zone articles, seminars and videos, please click the I Like Mike Campaign.