If you haven’ heard of the Motorhead Messiah, Jonathan Goodwin, let me introduce you: he hacks cars for a living, and he can get 60 mpg out of an H3 Hummer while doubling the horsepower and cutting emissions in half. Unbelievable? Yes, but this is no joke, and it’s doesn’t defy the laws of physics either. The hacked H3 is a hybrid with the gasoline fuel system removed. In its place, Goodwin installed a biodiesel-burning jet turbine to recharge the electrical system:
Goodwin leads me over to a red 2005 H3 Hummer that’s up on jacks, its mechanicals removed. He aims to use the turbine to turn the Hummer into a tricked-out electric hybrid. Like most hybrids, it’ll have two engines, including an electric motor. But in this case, the second will be the turbine, Goodwin’s secret ingredient. Whenever the truck’s juice runs low, the turbine will roar into action for a few seconds, powering a generator with such gusto that it’ll recharge a set of “supercapacitor” batteries in seconds.This means the H3’s electric motor will be able to perform awesome feats of acceleration and power over and over again, like a Prius on steroids. What’s more, the turbine will burn biodiesel, a renewable fuel with much lower emissions than normal diesel; a hydrogen-injection system will then cut those low emissions in half. And when it’s time to fill the tank, he’ll be able to just pull up to the back of a diner and dump in its excess french-fry grease–as he does with his many other Hummers. Oh, yeah, he adds, the horsepower will double–from 300 to 600.