The CMT-380 features lithium-polymer battery cells that can be charged at home or at a public recharging station. While driving, the CMT-380 can operate on 100 percent battery power in zero emissions mode for a range of up to 80 miles. When the batteries reach a predetermined state of discharge, the Capstone C30 microturbine quietly fires up and recharges the batteries on the fly to extend the driving range up to 500 miles. The diesel fueled C30 microturbine requires less maintenance than traditional combustion engines and produces ultra-low exhaust emissions. Hilleman has owned an electric vehicle – a converted Porsche 550 Spyder – for at 15 years and has constantly upgraded it. The EV used to have just 30 hp with lead acids but now uses lithium ferrous batteries and has 200 hp. The 100-mile range hasn't changed, though, and so he knew it was time to build a hybrid. He decided on Capstone's diesel microturbines as the range extender.
Right now, Hilleman is really happy with his creation. He especially loves the sound of the vehicle. Three feet to the side of the car, the microturbine puts out about 87 dB, but in the cabin, it's nearly silent. California law might require him to add a muffler, but it's already quiet enough without one. He's got a solution for that problem, should he need it.
The chassis and bodywork of the Capstone CMT-380 are borrowed from the Factory Five GTM kit sports car, and modified to accept the hybrid drivetrain.
"Capstone's CMT-380 is just now finishing up the conceptual design and first article testing stage," said Darren Jamison, Capstone President and CEO. "We plan to finalize very soon a limited production plan, in part, based on interest received at the  LA Auto Show. We anticipate customers will be a select group of individuals who appreciate its many innovative high-performance and high-technology driving characteristics, long driving range and ultra-low emissions," added Jamison.