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9kredline

All electric

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So I've decided to axe my previous projects and gasoline engine swaps for the simple fact that these swaps will ultimately just cost me more money in fuel and maintenance.

 

I've begun the planning of a daily commute car run completely on off-peak grid power with a ~60-70 mile range and respectable acceleration, for what it is. A 150-170V system with a WarP 9" DC mated to a 5-speed manual transmission.

 

My only issue is deciding on a good vehicle. Whatever vehicle it is will undergo various aerodynamic/weight/friction improvements to include:

 

Complete underbelly pan (front of car to the rear, with ventilation)

Rear wheel well covers

Low profile side mirrors

Low friction wheel bearings

Light wheels

Skinny (but safe) tires

Lightened flywheel

Synthetic fluids in all rotating assemblies

 

 

I need a vehicle with a small front cross-section, can handle the weight of the battery bank, is light weight (2500lb stock curb weight MAX), and has a good drag coefficient to begin with.

 

Need suggestions and ideas. Z's would work, but the age of the vehicles will ultimately make replacement parts difficult to find shortly down the road. All ideas welcome. Thanks!

 

Clayton

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an earlier 60s vw

they're light, and can be lighter

they can have thinner wheels (if you'd like)

they have plenty of room for that sort of stuff

 

Why not a 70's VW: the Porsche 914.

 

Light, probably aerodynamic, and comes with a 5 speed stock if I'm not mistaken. Usually quite a few hanging around without engines, too.

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The reason for the wheel well covers is create a smooth body for air to travel across. If you search around the net about increasin aerodynamics you will ultimately come across a guy who, doing nothing but aerodynamic changes, went from 25 to 32 mpg at 70mph.

 

http://www.evworld.com/article.cfm?storyid=870

 

And my Z, a Z32 slicktop, isn't going to be used for this project. Too heavy to begin with. It's being sold to fund my first anniversary trip with my wife.

 

And the reason for not just buy a new production hybrid is that only the toyota can run off of its electric motor alone, but the price of entry is prohibitive, on top of the fact that they don't look that great.

 

I have been looking at MR2s, Fieros, Subaru XTs, and the Porsches, and it will ultimately come down to which I can find in the best condition at the best price. Whatever I pick will also be outfitted with minor tow capacity to pull a TDi generator for interstate trips, running off of biodiesel.

 

I just completely lost my drive to build my LS1 when I crunched the numbers. If I were single I'd build both, but I have to think of the money over the long term with my wife and the possibility of children in the next few years.

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seriously, get an old 60's vw. WITH the engine, they weigh 1800lbs

they're plentiful

you can drive them with NO BODY (meaning you can fab up your own pretty fiberglass body)

PARTS are plentiful for the whole thing

and you can add minor towing capacity, that would be able to tow a tdi generator i'll bet.

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It would be interesting to see if the amount of energy you save in aerodynamics is anywhere near what can be saved with a good electronics controls of the motor. You will be at a decided disadvantage compared to the car companies in that regard.

 

And of course the batteries are what will make or break your project. The car manufactures are effectively subsidizing the cost of the batteries when they sell their hybrids. That will be a huge cost disadvantage you will have to overcome.

 

If you are doing this to try and save money, then I would wait for the plug in electric hybrids to show up. See if Chevy produces the Volt. That is electric drive only, with the small generator on board and not in a trailer.

 

My guess any car you build in your garage will be a very expensive car to run. Especially when you think about the tax advantages and low profit margins that will be throw toward the early plug in hybrids.

 

Have you check the price of electricity in your area? Florida has a rep for high electric prices. It may be cheaper to stay with gas.

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I think you are definately on to something with using the subaru xt.Those cars may seem ugly to some but they are light,they had the best aerodynamics of there time(even covered door handles) and the power steering pump on them is already electric powered so thats just an easy bonus.Not to mention the fact that you can put an ea82 series dual range(high an low) transmission out of any gl or loyale from like 1985 to 89 in it and run fwd rwd or awd.Plenty of room under the hood,seats 4 and has a trunk,what more do you want.

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Florida is an expensive state for power, but I'm a transient. I've been stationed in Tampa for years, so I'm prime for getting orders out, or I'll probably put in my seperation papers in a year or so for a more predictable and stable job/homelife.

 

Cost of these swaps are not as much as you would think, though they are a little more expensive than a JTR swap. The biggest expenses are the motor ($2k), the controlling electronics ($1.5k), the batteries ($1-1.5k) and the plugin charger and accessories ($3k) with some various items to hook it all together: machined adapter/hub to mount to transmission, various electric motors to supply spin to the AC condensor, vacuum to the power brakes, etc.

 

Plus, I can build this vehcile over time. Budget won't warrant a GM Volt, and the hybrids I can afford have a lot of miles racked up on them. I don't need to spend the money only to turn around and replace any components.

 

I see where you were coming from, though, Pop.

 

As far as the XTs go... they are ugly as sin, but they are an engineering masterpiece. 0.29 drag coefficient, AWD, handle amazingly.

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For my junior/senior project at school, a group of friends and I are building an electric car starting with a 240sx and using lithium ion batteries. According to some of the charts i've seen online, the sx is one of the most aerodynamic cars out there once frontal area is considered. Also we can get the weight down pretty low with one of them. We are leaning more towards the performance end rather than the max efficiency end, but our goal is a car with a range of 100-150 miles and less weight than the standard car with a tank of gas, which is reasonable considering the lithium batteries.

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9Kredline, I know where your coming from. I am caught in the dilema of how to power my 71 240Z.

I would love to go all out and swap in an RB26DETT just for the power thrill, but then the next time I turn around I'm thinking global warming - Carbon emmissions, etc. Some of the AC electric conversions available now can give good performance and range with plug in, but are very expensive for the lithium batteries that are required for amp-hour/ weight ratio.

Then I think maybe I should find some compromise, i.e. High compression L24 with LPG throttle body and electric supercharger, that would have low emmissions but still give a kick when required.

I have put off the decision for the moment and am Upgrading brakes, suspension, interior.

My daily driver is a toyota prius, with my Z just a weekend toy. Long term (20years) I think that the EV will be the way to go, but in the meantime maybe I should have some fun.

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