Car hacks / Mods prius-house

Published on March 16th, 2015 | by Christopher DeMorro


Recycled Hawtness: Toyota Prius Turned Tiny House

March 16th, 2015 by  


If there was one single car that defined environmentalism in the first decade of the 21st century, it was the Toyota Prius. It has become synonymous with the word hybrid, and though plenty of people take issue with its sometimes-smug drivers, it also has an avid fanbase that has done some pretty cool stuff to Prii.

prius-house-2This includes a young Australian landscaper named James Lawler, who the Herald-Sun reports converted his Prius into a motor home of sorts by building a tiny house where the hatchback used to go, and for just $113 in recycled materials. The lofted bed rests on the car’s roof, and there’s even a chimney for heat in addition to actual insulation. The corrugated metal roof gives it that Cuban refugee aesthetic, though Lawler says its far more comfortable than a tent. He’s not the first guy to convert the Prius into a camper, though I’d be willing to bet his was the lowest budget. You can hardly get a tent for $113 these days.

So why make this odd conversion? Lawler was on his way to a music festival, and rather than opt for a standard, boring camper van, he decided to do something different. Way, way different. Unfortunately, Australian authorities didn’t appreciate his liberal modifications to the standard Prius, and he was forced to destroy his budget motorhome build. But that’s only motivated Lawler to come up with an even better, perhaps even street legal solution. Considering his budget constraints, and the fact that not everyone can afford to sleep in a Tesla Model S, I applaud Mr. Lawler’s resourcefulness. And as a frequent music festival goer myself, I’m inspired by his dedication, if not his choice in vehicles or materials.

Sorry, but I still can’t see myself in a Prius. Ever.

Images: Mitch Bear/The Herald-Sun

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About the Author

A writer and gearhead who loves all things automotive, from hybrids to HEMIs, can be found wrenching or writing- or else, he's running, because he's one of those crazy people who gets enjoyment from running insane distances.

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  • Scott Gordon

    not realistic, the added weight will lower range and fuel economy

    • Chris DeMorro

      Consider your average motorhome is getting maybe 3 to 5 MPG, and ya, I don’t see your arguement.

      • Scott Gordon

        then you are blind as well.

    • Jacob Hughes

      Your comment is silly. Have you ever owned an RV? Of course the fuel range will be reduced but 35-40 mpg instead of 50 is still incredible.

  • Ian Campbell

    I sleep in the actual hatch of the prius just fine. Its the tiniest tinylife possible short of not owning a car and actually camping outdoors

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