Lucy Wang

Man Hacks Prius to Run on San Francisco MUNI Electric Bus Power Lines

by , 04/05/14

sierra hartman, bold italic, prius, franken-hybrid, franken-prius, san francisco, muni, april fools, muni bus, transportation, bus, hybrid cars,

When we first spotted this crazy picture of a Prius driver hitching a free energy ride on San Francisco’s MUNI power lines, we couldn’t believe it! Equipped with a giant trolley pole, the Franken-Prius hacks into the same overhead electrical system that propels the city’s buses, getting free power from San Francisco’s public transportation infrastructure.



sierra hartman, bold italic, prius, franken-hybrid, franken-prius, san francisco, muni, april fools, muni bus, transportation, bus, hybrid cars,

But then we noticed the date on the article (April 1st). What starts to give this story away is the hilarious license plate “MUNI PWR” that BoldItalic blogger Hartman creates for “Jon,” the fictitious Prius hacker. When interviewed about his hacked Prius get-up, Jon says that siphoning electricity off the well-connected MUNI lines powers his car just about anywhere in the city, “except they get pretty pissed when I run on the light-rail lines on 3rd Street.” Since the Prius only uses a fraction of the power delivered to a regular city bus, Jon distributes the rest of the excess power to “a whole lot of resistors, full-time headlights, and a kick-ass stereo system.”

Related: Norway Set to Become First Nation With One Electric Vehicle For Every Hundred Cars

Although this tricked-out Prius is unfortunately not real, the concept is inspiring. The Franken-Prius reminds us of similarly improbable design concepts created in architectural competitions, such as those in the Evolo Skyscraper Competitions, which serve to stimulate debate and discussion. Maybe a designer will be inspired by this “MUNI-fied” Prius and start chipping away on a viable alternative–we’d love to see it!

Via The Bold Italic

Images via The Bold Italic

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