PHOTO CAPTION: Toyota TS030 Hybrid LMP1 LeMans racer equipped with ultracapacitor energy storage system.

Supercaps Proving Merit On Race Track

Supercapacitor energy storage finding role in hybrids for regenerative braking and acceleration.

Published: 08-Oct-2012

If you’re of a certain age and have ever spent any time tuning your own car, you’ll remember the condenser — a small metal-cased tube with a single wire emanating from it that resided beneath the distributor cap.

Also called a capacitor, its simple but critical function was to store energy in brief bursts, acting as a buffer to prevent burning of the ignition points.

That form of capacitor went the way of the dodo bird back in the 1970s, with the arrival of electronic ignition systems, but capacitors are now making a comeback in automobiles in new and dramatic forms and context.


2012 Toyota Prius PHEV plug-in hybrid crosses Thames River in 2011 RAC Future Car Challenge.

Plug-in Prius marked its debut with a 94.2mpg average fuel consumption over the 60-mile challenge route from Brighton to London.

Toyota Prius c sub-compact will debut at Detroit auto show

Toyota Prius c is expected to get better than 50 mpg.

Toyota FT-EV III

Models include advanced fuel cell hybrid, all-electric city car and Aqua (C) Prius sub-compact.


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