Solution for EV range anxiety: a small trailer with a generator?

How much would it have to weigh and cost: a gasoline or propane engine + its fuel + a generator or alternator + a frame and wheel(s), to keep an EV from needing a long sitting recharge interrupting a long day’s drive?

These could be sold or rented out.

That’s been covered in a lot of detail here:

Bottom line: not a real option.

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It would be light enough to sit on one of those trailer hitch extensions that don’t have wheels. The problem is the cars have to be modified to charge while driving.

Pusher trailers have been invented in the past, but I’m not aware of any large scale pusher trailer maker. There are probably EPA regulations and such. It’s a really good idea, as an EV can regain some charge when cruising on the highway.

What people do is just go out and buy a hybrid vehicle. They’re excellent for highway cruising since the engines can be so much smaller.

Buy a hybrid. Problem solved.


Or just plan ahead and find a charging station on the way to your destination. There are now a little less than 130,000 public charging stations in the US, up from about 98,000 last year.

If it took you 2 hours to refuel your vehicle, how would that change your trips?

A trailer with a 110v generator won’t work. Period.

For a long trip, I’d stop at a place like a mall and charge my vehicle while I’m in mall getting something to eat. Finding an EV charging station is easy. There are aps you can get on your smart phone. And Tesla will tell you where the nearest charger is. As I stated before…most people use their vehicles for local commute.

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I am planning on purchasing a 2023 Lexus NX450h+ (plug-in hybrid). Its battery-only range is 37 miles, which would cover 90% of my driving, and would mean that I would have to buy gas only occasionally. For longer trips, its 36 mpg highway rating will have to suffice.

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Fast charging is much shorter, like 30 minutes. Also, you don’t have to fully charge. 80% is plenty and that is done quickly. Like your phone, early charging is quick.


sorry, but 37 miles doesn’t make much sense to me. it is like not using 1 gal. of gas. you would think they would make it at least 100 miles.

My friend with the Volvo EV doesn’t use gas during his commute. He still prefers a hybrid so that he has a great deal of rang Just In Case. Hey, we’re talking about people here. When was the last time you met a completely rational human?


It may not be enough for you, but for many commuters 37 miles is less than they drive in a day. I’d just plug it in each night, be ready the next morning, zero gas use. If a longer trip is needed, it goes into hybrid mode with good mpgs.

I understand it is good for you or people like your situation. but it would make more sense to have a longer mileage range. then it would appeal to a bigger range of people. I think more people would be interested in a hybrid with a longer range, than just an EV. they would have greater piece of mind knowing they have both gas and a longer range on electric. I do not think a lot of people are on board with just using an EV yet.

The PHEVs are already pretty expensive, tripling the range on battery power would require triple the battery size, significant $$.

For example, the hybrid Rav4 is about $2600 more than the equivalent non hybrid, while the PHEV Rav4 Prime is $8,000 more than the equivalent hybrid.

The real optimum for cost, battery use, and fuel efficiency is probably the regular hybrid.

If I don’t have to use one gallon of gas for my typical 14-28 mile drives every day, that does add-up, and–as I stated–for my needs I would likely only have to get gas once a month… maybe less often. That might not fit your needs, but it would work for me.

37 miles is actually pretty much at the high end for plug-in hybrids. The mechanically identical Rav-4 Prime is the champ in that category because it can eke-out 42 miles on solely battery power, but the higher weight and more gadgets on the Lexus NX-450h+ cuts that range down a bit. If you don’t believe me, take a look at the range of the other plug-in hybrids. Many/most of them can travel just 10 or 12 miles before the gas engine kicks in.

A non-plug in hybrid can typically travel just 1 or–at the most–2 miles on solely battery power before the gas engine kicks-in.


37 miles is plenty for most commuters.

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By range anxiety, I am thinking not of commuting distances, but of long drives or road trips. Many times each year I have a 350 mile drive back to my home town. And sometimes a long road trip of maybe 500+ miles in day. To have to hang out somewhere for a couple hours while refueling… that induces range anxiety. The effort to find a convenient place to refuel and to face the possibility that it will not be available right away when I get there… more range anxiety. Doing this during winter with fewer hours of daylight and more need for electric heat in the car… yipes.

The trailer/generator would not have to fully recharge the car from zero; it would need to slow down the rate the car discharges on a long trip, to allow a long (350-500 mile trip) without recharge stops.

The impact of a 110v generator on a long trip would be small, at great cost. It would add 3-5 miles of range per hour, so only 30-50 miles after 10 hours of driving. Not worth it.


Toyota is not abandoning the Prius; smart.
Ford going 100% EV; good luck with that.

The world isn’t crying out for EV’s starting at $40,000 going to $300,000 for that new Cadillac.

The world needs cheap, highly efficient, cars; not insanely expensive to own “technological wonders”.

I predict Toyota is going to have record profits and severe product shortages while Ford gets a Government bailout…