increase mpg

Just a curious physics student that doesn't understand why you havent utilized Michilin's in wheel motors on your trucks. A combustion engine can be used as a generator (as is done for millions of household back-ups) and the electricity used to provide power for a motor in each wheel (proved to provided better torque). This will lighten the truck (when you dont use battery packs like the Chevy Volt, and drop the drive train and transmission).
John S 10/28/2012
Delia has an excellent idea. Dennis, not so much as what he describes would be a perpetual motion vehicle. When you put a load on a generator, it gets harder to turn. While it is possible to put a generator in the front wheels and generate electricity, then use that electricity to run the rear wheels, the problem is the rear wheels now must push harder to move the car. Even assuming no wire loss, the generator in the front wheels will only be about 95 percent efficient at converting rotational energy into electricity. The rear wheels, on the other hand, now require about 110 percent more power to maintain the same speed as a similar setup with no generators in the front wheels. On top of that, you'll still require the batteries to provide power. The end result of this setup will be a slower car with less range than the same car without the in-wheel generators. The most viable means to drive a car using today's technology would be to build a serial hybrid like GM's Volt, only without the extended range battery pack. And, use a smaller turbodiesel to drive the generation section. You could see over 100MPG with such a setup, and have a faster, more powerful vehicle than its gasoline counterpart.
Dennis T 10/22/2012
I wish I had the money to experiment: build a prototype. Problem: Turn a generator using a vehicle wheel to generate electricity to run electric motors and to move the vehicle. Solution: use computer assisted controllers and other electronic to monitor the generator output and regulate the output to motors and batteries.
Dennis T 10/22/2012
A lot of kinetic energy in turning wheels. Many have suggested some type of electrical charging system to Ford. My hope is that Ford will listen and act. An electric generator just needs to spin to produce electricity. Turning wheels at Freeway speeds would do the same job as hydroelectric or using steam or exhaust to power turbines. Using a generator does not increase ‘drag’: balancing, computer control, gearing systems to turn the generator faster. The generator just needs to turn to produce electricity!
A EVs (Electric Vehicles) range needs to be longer. I did a Bing search on 'electric motors' and Siemens came up. I was educated about the difference between 'Parallel Hybrid' and 'Serial Hybrid'. 'Parallel' uses the combustion engine exclusively to turn a transmission for power to the wheels: it only uses the electric drive motors to get the vehicle moving or sustain a low MPH. 'Serial Hybrid' uses electric motors "exclusively" to drive the vehicle and the combustion engine is used to drive a generator to power the electric motors and re-charge batteries. Diesel-Electric trains do this very well. The "combustion engine" could be a small power plant that uses fuel cell tech, or Natural Gas, or gasoline then engine size does not have to large. The electric motor has a lot of torque so it can handle any load or any application. Siemens has been around and produced electric motors since the late 1800s. Ford and Siemens could combine: Ford engines and vehicles with Siemens electric motors, controllers and other electronics to produce a planet loving vehicle product.