Selecting the ideal car for conversion

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OzSpider
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Real Name: Derek
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Selecting the ideal car for conversion

Post by OzSpider »

Hi Everyone,

I'm still new to the forum but enjoying reading old posts and build stories.

This must be a common discussion point but couldn't find a recent post.

What's the best candidate for an EV conversion? This of course is a piece of string question, everyone will have an opinion and different objectives.

For what it's worth, I've already made my decision on the best EV conversion car for me and have a 1970's small Italian car in the shed patiently waiting for me to finish a list of honeydoos before I take the first spanner to it.
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brendon_m
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Re: Selecting the ideal car for conversion

Post by brendon_m »

I would say something fun to drive and make it work from there.

Theres not much point in converting something for the pure sake of having an EV when you can buy a leaf, imiev, ioniq etc for what you'll pay in conversion costs and end up with a much more refined vehicle. Not saying you can't convert something for less than a factory EV but until we get more wrecked EVs in Australia parts are normally too expensive
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jonescg
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Re: Selecting the ideal car for conversion

Post by jonescg »

Yep, go for something special. Make it fast. Super long range, incredible handling, or even a solar charged EV camper trailer just for something different. Or an electric ute or 4x4 since nobody sells an electric one here yet.
AEVA National Secretary, WA branch chair.
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jonescg
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Re: Selecting the ideal car for conversion

Post by jonescg »

What I'm saying is, don't convert a Camry.
AEVA National Secretary, WA branch chair.
OzSpider
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Re: Selecting the ideal car for conversion

Post by OzSpider »

I'm not the expert here, but these are the factors I considered.

Cost of conversion - cash
Ease of conversion (complexity)
Desired range and recharge time
Performance (same as ICE, more or less than original)

Then some softer factors were:
Future value? Heirloom or scrap when I'm done.
Emotional attachment - would I want to drive it.

Cost is always a factor unless you are swimming in cash. There is a direct correlation between car size (weight) and the cost (batteries) unless you only need a very short range.

Ease of conversion has to be considered particularly for a first conversion. I've built a lot of houses before we got that mostly right...

Skipping range and performance which are self explanatory.

Future value is interesting in that it's clear from reading stories on this forum, none of these conversions are money making exercises. Question is how much are you willing to lose or spend for the pleasure. Part of the answer to that is does the vehicle have any residual value once you are done with it. Might be worth a fortune to you, but if the buying market doesn't exist or agree then it may have only scrap value. Harsh but true!

Emotional value is probably the most important for me. If you love the thing and enjoy driving it then you will create more value from the exercise. The extra money spent for slightly better range or performance will be repaid.

At the end of the day, do we do EV conversions on cars that weren't designed for it because it will have a meaningful impact on climate change? Better driving experience? Avoiding paying money to Big Oil Companies? All of the above?

What made you choose which car for an EV conversion?
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brendon_m
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Re: Selecting the ideal car for conversion

Post by brendon_m »

I chose my moke because it was simple, I already owned it and the ICE was unreliable
OzSpider
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Re: Selecting the ideal car for conversion

Post by OzSpider »

Very practical approach. Really enjoyed reading your story. Must be a good emotional attachment to the car given the strife isn't a believer! 🙂
T1 Terry
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Re: Selecting the ideal car for conversion

Post by T1 Terry »

I plan to do my '74 kombi ... it might actually reduce its resale value but if I was to sell it on completion I think I'd still be ahead as far as costs go .... but not a hope that will ever happen :lol:
I bought it more than 20 yrs ago for .... can't really remember, either $1500 or $2,500, been a daily driver since. It is in need of a full restoration as far as the body goes, anywhere between $10,000 and $20,000 for that part, yet I was offered $15,000 as is not long back so fully restored it won't loose value.
Why convert it? After it being a family member since 1999? I just couldn't part with it. I have an '06 Prius converted to a plug in hybrid and it just goes so well and so cheap to run, doesn't give the headaches the VW ICE loves to drop on me every time we go one a long trip ... and I really want to do an EV conversion.
I've thought about buying a type 3 kombi (the ones with the squared off panels) because it wouldn't feel like I was destroying such an iconic vehicle, but the end product would still be a type 3, not a bay kombi .....

T1 Terry
Green but want to learn
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