|Owner's Other EV||1992 Suzuki Swift GTi|
|Location||Adelaide, South Australia Australia map|
|Vehicle||2002 Lotus Elise |
After converting my Suzuki Swift Gti to electric, I've now purchased a Lotus Elise to convert to electric drive.
|Motor||Kostov K10 - 10 inch motor Compound Wound DC|
A 10.5 inch motor cabable of 100kW (134HP) peak should easily move the little Elise. I only used a 9" 74kW peak motor in the Swift and that is quite rapid.
|Drivetrain||It was a 1.8L 4 cylinder with a 5 speed manual gearbox.|
|Controller||Evnetics Soliton 1|
I used a Zilla 1k last time, but they are no longer available. I will use the Soliton 1 as it can handle 1000amps to the motor for a short time and also has a built in contactor.
|Batteries||45 Thunder Sky 100Ah, 3.20 Volt, Lithium Iron Phosphate|
Ideal for the job.
|System Voltage||144 Volts|
Used it last time and it was great.
|Heater||Hotstart Tank Heater from EV Works - Average yearly temperature in Adelaide (Australia) is 21'C, so don't really need a heater, although I have to have one to meet the ADR (Aust Design Rules)|
|DC/DC Converter||Iota DLS-55|
I used one last time and it did the job.
|Instrumentation||Stock Lotus Elise with X-Pert PRO HV battery monitor.|
|Top Speed||110 MPH (176 KPH)|
175kph is more than enough top end speed (not tested!). It will hardly need to drive over 60kph on my average drive to work anyway.
|Acceleration||It will be pretty fast - not quite Tesla performance, but more than enough to surprise a few people. 3rd gear from a standing start is great!|
|Range||70 Miles (112 Kilometers)|
I only travel 12kms a day, so approx 110km range (70 miles) is more than enough for my needs. I'd rather have less batteries (less weight) so that the handling and acceleration remains great.
|Seating Capacity||2 seater roadster|
|Curb Weight||1,870 Pounds (849 Kilograms)|
It should weigh approx 850kgs when the conversion is complete. Gotta love the light weight Elise!
|Tires||Standard Elise with Standard Lotus 17" alloy wheels at the rear and 16" at the front.|
|Conversion Time||It will be completed in 6 months|
|Conversion Cost||A lot more than my previous Swift GTi conversion! I wont be cutting any corners. This will be a top quality conversion with no expense spared.|
|Additional Features||I want an EV that drives well and has great performance. I would have bought a GM EV1 if GM still made them and hadn't crushed them. If you havent seen "Who killed the electric car", you really need to see it.|
Although I would like to buy a Tesla Roadster, (I have driven one and they are really nice), the price is approximately $220,000-$260,000 in Australia after taxes etc, so I had no option but to build my own electric sports car. It is still quite quick, have a range that suits my lifestyle and be great fun to drive!
|March 2011 - Purchased Lotus Elise - Series 2.|
I'm going to drive it to work for the next couple of weeks to make sure that it has no problems then I'll park it in my garage and start removing the no longer needed items, like, engine, exhaust, fuel tank etc.
Just sending paperwork in to Regency Park to get approval from Road Transport SA first.
The car has been weighed at an official weighbridge. It weighed in at 780kg with a full tank of fuel (so about 745kg with an empty tank). That's lighter than the new 2011 model by almost 125kg - Great!
March 17 2011 - Project started!!!!
I started stripping the car down last night after dinner. I am going to remove the front and rear clams to enable better access.
Rear clam removed. Driveshafts out. Engine removed. Fuel tank removed. Gearbox removed from engine.
I've rested the gearbox back in the engine bay with the engine hoist to measure space (see photo).
The batteries, motor and lots of other components arrived. I'm just waiting for the controller and the charger.
Eric came over last night and helped me remove the front clam. There isn't room in the front for any batteries!
The motor has arrived and looks huge! - a 10.5" motor in a car this small looks very big indeed. I took it to the engineers who is going to make a steel adapter plate and a coupler from the gearbox to the motor. This time I am going to retain the spring feature of the clutch centre to reduce the stress on the gearbox under light acceleration.
I am expecting the adaptor plate and coupler to take approximately 3 weeks. It's not the cheapest option, but they will be matched perfectly and a top quality job.
Last night I cut off the top of the fuel tank and have made it into a battery box holding 10 of the TS100Ah batteries. This sits under the car in the original fuel tank position and would weigh the same as if it was full of fuel - Perfect.
I've started welding the battery box together which will sit above the fuel tank centre structure of the car (right behind the seats). This will hold another 25 x TS100Ah batteries. This is possble with no cuts or alterations to the original body.
The central battery box is almost complete now. I've test fitted it into the car and it is nice and tight. The adaptor plate and coupler are almost ready. Next job is to start planning some wiring for the controller, XPert Pro battery monitor and heater.
Today, Eric came over to give me a hand. We ran some cables from the front dash to the rear of the car. 5 x High voltage cables in an orange sleeve so they are double isulated and comply with the standards. Also we ran 14 x 12v cables for the controller, heater and other items.
The engineer is about to inspect the vehicle to make sure that it meets the state engineering requirements.
The engineer (Stuart Croser) came to inspect the car. He is the ideal guy to check out your car if you are in SA He is very experienced with EV's. Stuart is happy with the progress so far and has made some suggestions regarding holding the batteries in place.
I did some welding and bracket making today. I've just added photos of the adaptor plate - It is an engineering masterpiece, made by Hammat Enginering on Marion Rd, Marion. Look at the quality! I am very pleased with it.
Eric came over and we cleaned up the adaptor plate and coupler and sprayed them to stop any rust forming. The motor and gearbox have been coupled together and are now in the car (although the engine hoist is still in place until the 'motor mount' is made.
I made a cardboard engine mount for the other end of the motor. This is now being manufactured in steel and will be ready soon so that I can remove the engine hoist and re-insert the drive shafts (which have cleaned up great).
The engine mount is complete and the motor is installed. I am taking some annual leave and I'm planning a 3 day blitz on Thursday, Friday and Saturday. The blitz went well and the car is getting close. The motor turned the wheels using 12 volts and it sounded great (very quiet)! The DC switch is installed inbetweem the seats. I now need to connect the controller and the cables to the X-Pert Pro. I'll definitely be cracking an EV-grin before the end of this month! :)
The car is now completed thanks to many hours of help from Eric. If you would like to see the car and are in Adelaide, South Australia, it will be display at Science Alive on 6th and 7th August. Come over and say hello. I will be there all weekend.
The car has full engineering certification and Transport SA (Regency Park) have now given it full approval to be driven on the road.
It drives really well, has plenty of power and is absolutely fantastic to drive. It looks pretty good too :)
I'm so pleased that I put the Xpert PRO E-Meter in as that is a really useful display as it shows, volts, current and % of battery remaining. That helps a great deal with 'range confidence'. Overall the car has turned out absolutely fantastic and I am really pleased with it.
Please see AEVA SA website for details of up-coming events that this car will be on display at.