Electric Car Conversion Considerations

I’ve got a donor car for my electric car conversion 🙂

My Dad offered up his trusty car to me! I learned how to drive standard shift in this car. I love this car! It gets just about 50 MPG!

Also got a “new” car. Not new, but new to me:

I bought the VW with the intention of it being my first conversion. The people that owned it before me didn’t seem to believe in changing the oil. The muffler rattles around when I accelerate and the brake indicator light is on most of the time. It has something to do with my emergency brake. I hear a click near the e-brake handle, and then the light goes on & stays on. Also, it’s hard to put it into first and second gear. A new friend told me that it was probably the spacers in the linkage, and not a problem with the transmission. Phew! Most of the problems would not have mattered if I were converting it, which was my intention when I looked at it & put the deposit down.

On the way back from Rhode Island, when I was putting the deposit down on the VW, the clutch went out in the Geo.

It is a difficult choice to decide which to convert. Here are my considerations:

Reasons to convert the Beetle:

  • The Metro gets better gas mileage, so converting the Beetle would allow me to continue getting the 50 mpg from the Metro when I need to make the longer trips that the converted car couldn’t make. A trip to my Mom’s is 125 mi and to my Dad’s 230 mi.
  • I’d be driving this car most of the time around town. It’s a more comfortable car.

Reasons to convert the Metro:

  • The Metro is not as complex as the Beetle – making for an easier conversion. The Beetle has power windows, locks, brakes, steering, cruise control, etc.
  • The Metro needs a new clutch & is not drivable at this time.
  • The Beetle has cruise control, making long trips more comfortable for the driver.

The Beetle gets about 30 mpg. (meh.) I’ve been driving that & hope that it lasts me long enough to get the Metro converted. It’s got a pretty powerful engine & is quite forgiving when I have it in higher gears and lower speeds. Once I convert the Metro, I hope to drive it most of the time and eventually convince my husband that we could have 2 cars rather than 3 – one for local driving, and one for long-distance driving. Right now, we have 3 cars: the Metro, the Beetle and Jim has my old Sunfire, which was originally his car 🙂

Well, I don’t know if anyone would be interested in reading all of my blathering on about my cars & EV plans, but it’s here in any case anyone gives a crap!

0 thoughts on “Electric Car Conversion Considerations

  1. Heya there, Jean!

    Question for you. I am aware of battery power being a HUGE issue for electric cars, and I have been made to believe that this is what is holding electric-powered autos back from taking their place in the auto market. Specifically, the amount of space needed to accommodate the kind of battery would be like equivalent to the back seat.

    Have you looked into specific voltage & current requirements of the power source and the kind of battery that would be necessary to deliver it? I could make a suggestion that NiMH rechargeable batteries would be a possibility. They have a steady voltage output until they reach a critical point, at which they decay rapidly (i.e. what happens when normal car batteries die). NiMH batteries also have a good energy density (high energy in smaller amount of space).

    Just some things to think about…

    By the way, you should be and ENGINEER!! You’re crazy!

    -Karen

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