Rear Battery BoxWhole Car
OwnerAndy Herringshaw
(former owner, EV has been sold)
LocationAmes, Iowa United States map
Web/EmailWebPage email image
Vehicle1988 Mazda 323 SE
MotorAzure Dynamics/Solectria AC 24 3-Phase AC
ControllerAzure Dynamics/Solectria DMOC 445
Batteries18 US Battery 8VGCHC, 8.00 Volt, Lead-Acid, Flooded
183 Ah High Capacity Golf Cart Batteries
System Voltage144 Volts
ChargerZivan NG3
120v setup
Heater1500w Ceramic, sealed into the original A/C Condenser housing. Switch will only turn it on if the fan is blowing (A/C circuit).
DC/DC ConverterIota DLS-45
InstrumentationSOC, Ammeter
Top Speed65 MPH (104 KPH)
Top speed achievable within for 20 miles, but drops after that. At 50 miles, top speed is ~40mph
AccelerationKeeps up with urban traffic, slow to enter highways.
Range71 Miles (114 Kilometers)
Proven Range - economy mode drive starting at 40-45 mph, and would still hold 25mph at the end. Resting voltage of 142.8 after this drive, showed at 56% SOC = 44% DOD. Limiter stepped in at 49 miles, gradually reducing current from 120A to ~75A over the last 21 miles, thus the reduced speed.
Watt Hours/Mile325 Wh/Mile
Average efficiency plug-to-rubber. This is the garage's watt-hour reading compared to mileage over 2000 miles.
EV Miles
Start:105,100 Miles (169,105 Kilometers)
Current:107,600 Miles (173,128 Kilometers)
Total:2,500 Miles (4,022 Kilometers)
    As of 11/23/2010
Seating Capacity4-5 adults
Curb Weight3,000 Pounds (1,363 Kilograms)
Standard weight 2200#, -600# of ICE equipment, +1400# Electric Drive Equipment. Well under GVWR.

The change in weight location (much added to rear) makes winter driving scary, as the rear end will start swinging out of a curve on slippery ground.
TiresSumitomo HTR 4 All Season (51psi)
Conversion Time6.5 months, ~200 hours Fabrication was completed in ~6 weeks, but waited for Azure components and then a rework of controller after a failed DC/DC converter burnt a few things.
Conversion Cost800 Donor Car
9200 ElectroAuto Kit
1800 Batteries
650 Suspension
300 Battery Heaters
1850 Everything Else

~14,000 Total

Labor ~200 hours
Additional FeaturesSuspension:
GroundControl Springs
400 #/in Front
550 #/in Rear
Front springs are way too stiff, rear ones could be a bit softer - when I asked for them, I told them I was adding 800# to the rear and 300# in front.

Battery Box Insulation/Heating
All: 1" Polystyrene w/ 1/4" wood panel on exterior
Rear: 2x 300w Waterbed Heaters w/ stock thermostat
Front: 420w WarmTiles radiant floor heater w/ waterbed thermostat.

I would recommend the GroundControl springs. For $100/wheel, you get exactly the spring rate you want and adjustable height.

5/31/08 2000 miles since conversion, 63 cycles, and all is well. I tested the range this week and it drove so well! I don't plan to drive the car frequently on 70 mile trips, but a 50 miler on occasion will likely be needed, and now I'm totally comfortable with that range.

Update 6/2008 Due to a move that puts me within biking distance of work, I have decided to sell the car. Sold though EValbum's page to a nice family in New York for $15,800.

code by jerry