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I've contemplated a DiY electric vehicle build for a number of years now. What I've got is a 2005 2 door cobalt with top end of the engine pulled. This was my son's project car that we haven't done anything with. I'm now thinking about an electric conversion.

Skill level: I would say that I am moderately skilled when it comes to auto mechanics and fabrication. I'm 39 and have wrenched on cars and bikes since I was 16 but not as a profession. My day job is as a senior systems engineer and I have been in IT professionally for 17 years. My welder is a Millermatic 211. I run solid on it with 75/25 argon/CO2.

Range desired: Oh, I don't know. 75 miles would be nice. 175 miles would be great. It's 2018...175 miles isn't hard to attain is it?

Budget: I'm not broke but this would definitely be a budgeted project executed over time. I've got one and soon to be two kids in college, 2 Camaros we show with the OK Camaro Club, motorcycles to maintain for our B.A.C.A. efforts, and the usual bills such as mortgage, insurance, car payments, etc.

From my online research, this car has a 5-speed Getrag F23 manual transmission. Has anyone picked up one of those Warp9 or Warp11 electric motors on eBay and mated it to one of those transmissions? Is this a feasible idea? Any guidance and tips are greatly appreciated.
 

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Range desired: Oh, I don't know. 75 miles would be nice. 175 miles would be great. It's 2018...175 miles isn't hard to attain is it?
Range is a function of dollars and weight carrying capacity of the car. Important to understand that 75 miles is a lot more affordable than 175 miles ;)

Can you really live with driving the car 'just' 30 miles away from your home? Do you have a rapid charger within 60 miles of your home?

Budget:I'm not broke but this would definitely be a budgeted project executed over time.
Can you be more specific on the budget? Is $10K available as a lump sum now? If not, how much?
 

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$5k would be a more reasonable budget.

A 75 mile range would get the kid to school and back. A 175 mile range would get me to work and back. I drive 53 miles to work and the same back home. There are some charging stations around Tulsa (where I work) but I do not see if they are "rapid chargers". They are denoted as having an EV plug if that tells you anything. In between home and work (36.4 miles from home), there is a charging station denoted as "supercharger".
 

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$5k would be a more reasonable budget.
That would buy you a wrecked Nissan Leaf which contains everything that you need for a ~70 mile range conversion.

It may be possible to build something cheaper... see Damien's new thread (here) for some ideas on a ~40 mile range budget conversion.

A 75 mile range would get the kid to school and back. A 175 mile range would get me to work and back.
75 miles is just about achievable with your budget. 175 miles will require serious money today.

There are some charging stations around Tulsa (where I work) but I do not see if they are "rapid chargers". They are denoted as having an EV plug if that tells you anything.
If they are 'rapid' chargers they could recharge a ~70 mile range car in ~45 minutes. This might be an option for you but most people get fed up waiting to rapid charging if you do it everyday. A better option would be to charge the car while it's not in use... when parked at work for example.

In between home and work (36.4 miles from home), there is a charging station denoted as "supercharger".
That will be a Tesla charger that can only be used with their cars.
 

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Just one thing to be aware of
Leaf batteries degrade quite rapidly, especially 2011-2013 batteries.

I would strongly recommend finding a 30kwhr leaf wreck as you will be guaranteed 75 miles of range winter or summer even with some degradation.
Other much cheaper option would be to buy 2 volt battery packs and just the guts from a leaf (motor, controller)

As always remember that even though used EV prices have trended up a little recently, a fully functioning BEV can still be had $5000 on up without a buying a wreck, just remember that without destination charging most first generation EVs won’t make 75 highway miles in the winter, let alone after battery wear.

https://www.cars.com/vehicledetail/detail/725662796/overview/

https://www.cars.com/vehicledetail/detail/728824406/overview/

The guts from the either car above would likely return 50 miles of winter range.

Further, if you want a hybrid the full smart drivetrain fits right into the trunk of the Cobalt, drop in another 2.2 up front and now you can drive electric when you want and unlimited gas miles

Good Luck
 
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