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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I plan to convert my Honda 600 ZCoupe to electric. Regarding skill level, I can do basic repairs:adjust valves, change plugs but not comfortable going much beyond that. My starting point is to figure if I have enough room in the engine bay. Once I know what motor set up I can use, I would then proceed to the battery setup.

My end goal is to have a reliable car, with good acceleration and a range of 75-100 miles.
Budget: 20K?

After some research I've come up with a few ideas, but I don't know if these will fit in my engine bay.
I've got about 26 inches between the axle shafts. The parts so far are an AC-50 motor, a Honda manual trans, and an adapter plate to connect motor and trans (adapter plate is available). I know the dimensions of the AC-50 motor (about 14 inches, not including shaft) but I don't know which would be the best Honda manual trans to get and thus what size it would be. I suggested the Honda trans as I know there's an adapter plate available, but I'm certainly hoping to get more suggestions for a good set up.

A friend has come up with this drawing as to the basic plan and a pic of a similar Honda 600 empty engine bay:
Handwriting Font Rectangle Parallel Drawing

Motor vehicle Bumper Automotive exterior Red Gas
 

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Hi,

How fast do you want to go in K-car?
Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV has rear motor and drive unit as 1 unit.
They are very small unit like what Swindon people are using for Mini conversion kit. If you have driveshafts different length, you might have a torque steer.

I have an Outlander PHEV and when i took my car to my friend who is a mechinc, we checked out how big they are and so on.

Good luck and I shall check your progress with interest!
 

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Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV has rear motor and drive unit as 1 unit.
They are very small unit like what Swindon people are using for Mini conversion kit. If you have driveshafts different length, you might have a torque steer.

I have an Outlander PHEV and when i took my car to my friend who is a mechinc, we checked out how big they are and so on.
The Outlander PHEV rear drive unit is promising in size and power, but the rear motor of that vehicle is behind the axle line:

Forward is to the left, as indicated by the trailing suspension arms. The motor position behind the axle would make it an unlikely fit in the front of any car designed for a transverse engine ahead of the axle line.

Mitsubishi actually used essentially the Outlander PHEV rear drive unit as the only drive unit in their Kei-class EV, the i-MiEV. In the i-MiEV, the motor is ahead of the axle line.
 

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My end goal is to have a reliable car, with good acceleration and a range of 75-100 miles.
Budget: 20K?
You know, for $20,000US you could buy, with possible tax incentives, 2 or 3( that's TWO or THREE) used Nissan Leafs with maybe slightly less range available. And, drive any one of them to work and play tomorrow. With your admitted minimal skill level, this project could take many months-to years to complete, if ever. All this to convert one of Honda's first regrettable econobox death traps? That said, as a classic car in its original form, it still would be worth more to collectors or any other buyers than probably any conversion you could come up with.
 

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brian_,

I thought you can turn rear Outlander unit back to front.
For a normal motor(toy) you change +ve and -ve to change direction of motor rotation.
Is this noe the case with "Big motor"?
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Thanks for the replies.

Miniswift said: How fast so you want to go?
Steve: Well, 75 mph would be great, with reasonably fast, fun acceleration.

Brian said: The Outlander PHEV rear drive unit is promising in size and power, but the rear motor of that vehicle is behind the axle line:
Steve: Wouldn't this work (behind axle set-up) according to my drawing?

Electo wrks said: You know, for $20,000US you could buy, with possible tax incentives, 2 or 3( that's TWO or THREE) used Nissan Leafs .
Steve: Yes, but would they be as much fun? Also, regarding "admitted minimal skill level" I have 2 friends who are very savvy when it comes to cars and problem solving, plus some good resources like this forum.

Steve: Due to possible size restrictions, another suggestion has been to use 2 smaller motors, one for each wheel and using a electronic differential eliminating transmission or other differential. Small motors
Anyone with input on electronic differentials?
 

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I thought you can turn rear Outlander unit back to front.
Probably... if you handle the reversed rotation, including motor control and lubrication. I don't know how the Outlander PHEV gearboxes handle the oil - is it pumped?

For a normal motor(toy) you change +ve and -ve to change direction of motor rotation.
It's not a permanent magnet DC motor, so to wire a change in rotation you reverse two of the three phase wires, but the encoder also has to be changed. The other method is to just tell the controller to go in reverse to move forward, and vice versa... but there can be issues such as a lower speed limit in reverse.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Thanks for the replies. Steve
I'm hoping someone has already tried to use the Outlander PHEV for the perversion. Seems like it could be a good option.
 

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Brian said: The Outlander PHEV rear drive unit is promising in size and power, but the rear motor of that vehicle is behind the axle line:
Steve: Wouldn't this work (behind axle set-up) according to my drawing?
The Honda Z Coupe is a front-wheel-drive car with a transverse engine... the typical modern small car. In this configuration the engine is normally mostly ahead of the axle line; there is typically not enough space from the axle line to the firewall to fit an engine, or even an electric motor, behind the axle line.
 

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Due to possible size restrictions, another suggestion has been to use 2 smaller motors, one for each wheel and using a electronic differential eliminating transmission or other differential. Small motors
Anyone with input on electronic differentials?
I don't think you'll find much useful by the term "electronic differential"; most likely online search matches would be mechanical differentials with electronically controlled slip limiting clutches, and skid-steering systems.

What you would need is a pair of motor controllers which are programmed to work together to drive the two motors appropriately (a feature which Curtis calls "Dual-Drive"), or a supervisory controller which tells each of the two motor controllers what to do. For low-voltage systems, Curtis has Dual-Drive controllers and even has one unit which is two controllers in one box; since this is done for industrial vehicles such as forklift trucks, other makers of similar controllers (Kelly? Sevcon?) probably have the same feature.

Two smaller motors plus their separate gearboxes (with no mechanical differential needed) are not likely to be any smaller than one larger motor with its gearbox and differential (transaxle). Using two motors does not change the need for reduction gearing to match the speed that the motor must turn to produce sufficient power to the much lower speed that the wheels turn; it only eliminates the need for a differential (which allows one shaft from a motor or gearbox to drive two wheels at different speeds).

There are a few dual-motor units in production vehicles. The small ones are used for the electric-only drive of one axle in a hybrid, such as the rear axle of the Sport Hybrid SH-AWD versions of the Acura RLX and MDX (and front axle of the Honda/Acura NSX). It would be a challenge to be the first DIY builder to use one of these units outside of the original Honda vehicle.
 

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Yes, but would they be as much fun?
You know, for $20,000 you can buy a better car?
Maybe 2 or 3. See post 5. And, is this the best use of soon to be hard to get, more expensive batteries? The batteries could be used for more practical DIY projects. Fun is great. Fun and practical is better. This includes the best use these EV parts for reducing CO^2 production related to climate change. Please think about it.
 

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The Outlander PHEV rear drive unit is promising in size and power, but the rear motor of that vehicle is behind the axle line:

Forward is to the left, as indicated by the trailing suspension arms. The motor position behind the axle would make it an unlikely fit in the front of any car designed for a transverse engine ahead of the axle line.

Mitsubishi actually used essentially the Outlander PHEV rear drive unit as the only drive unit in their Kei-class EV, the i-MiEV. In the i-MiEV, the motor is ahead of the axle line.
That subframe looks good.
what is the power spec on it
 

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mine is a 72 sedan the N600. With the help of a coupla very knowledge and capable friends we've been upgrading it for the last 15 years. It currently has a 9inch DC motor, Zilla 1k controller and manzanita charger and lithium battery pack of 48 CALB cells. It's been fun, a learning experience, and a lot of work. I've friend with a classic mini-cooper and I think he has the same trans-axle and adapter plate you are thinking of. I don't think it'll fit. I wasn't sure a 9inch DC motor would fit till I mocked it up with a cardboard model.


QUOTE="SteveWonder, post: 1082951, member: 279786"]
I plan to convert my Honda 600 ZCoupe to electric. Regarding skill level, I can do basic repairs:adjust valves, change plugs but not comfortable going much beyond that. My starting point is to figure if I have enough room in the engine bay. Once I know what motor set up I can use, I would then proceed to the battery setup.

My end goal is to have a reliable car, with good acceleration and a range of 75-100 miles.
Budget: 20K?

After some research I've come up with a few ideas, but I don't know if these will fit in my engine bay.
I've got about 26 inches between the axle shafts. The parts so far are an AC-50 motor, a Honda manual trans, and an adapter plate to connect motor and trans (adapter plate is available). I know the dimensions of the AC-50 motor (about 14 inches, not including shaft) but I don't know which would be the best Honda manual trans to get and thus what size it would be. I suggested the Honda trans as I know there's an adapter plate available, but I'm certainly hoping to get more suggestions for a good set up.

A friend has come up with this drawing as to the basic plan and a pic of a similar Honda 600 empty engine bay:
View attachment 126431
View attachment 126432
[/QUOTE]
Mine is a '72 N600 sedan. I've a friend with a classic mini-cooper with the set-up I think you are refering to. It's a popular conversion evidently to drop in a Honda transaxle in the classic coopers. He used the HPEV AC50 and a curtis controller. I've had my Honda for 24 years and am on version III with a 9inch DC motor, zilla 1k, manzanita pfc20 and a lithium pack of 48 CALB cells. I'm not sure a transaxle-motor arrangment will fit, what with all the other components needed....
As you can see from the pic it's all a pretty tight fit and my motor is stacked on top the original trans.
Hood Automotive tire Vehicle Automotive design Motor vehicle


I plan to convert my Honda 600 ZCoupe to electric. Regarding skill level, I can do basic repairs:adjust valves, change plugs but not comfortable going much beyond that. My starting point is to figure if I have enough room in the engine bay. Once I know what motor set up I can use, I would then proceed to the battery setup.

My end goal is to have a reliable car, with good acceleration and a range of 75-100 miles.
Budget: 20K?

After some research I've come up with a few ideas, but I don't know if these will fit in my engine bay.
I've got about 26 inches between the axle shafts. The parts so far are an AC-50 motor, a Honda manual trans, and an adapter plate to connect motor and trans (adapter plate is available). I know the dimensions of the AC-50 motor (about 14 inches, not including shaft) but I don't know which would be the best Honda manual trans to get and thus what size it would be. I suggested the Honda trans as I know there's an adapter plate available, but I'm certainly hoping to get more suggestions for a good set up.

A friend has come up with this drawing as to the basic plan and a pic of a similar Honda 600 empty engine bay:
View attachment 126431
View attachment 126432
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 · (Edited)
mine is a 72 sedan the N600. With the help of a coupla very knowledge and capable friends we've been upgrading it for the last 15 years. It currently has a 9inch DC motor, Zilla 1k controller and manzanita charger and lithium battery pack of 48 CALB cells. It's been fun, a learning experience, and a lot of work. I've friend with a classic mini-cooper and I think he has the same trans-axle and adapter plate you are thinking of. I don't think it'll fit. I wasn't sure a 9inch DC motor would fit till I mocked it up with a cardboard model.


QUOTE="SteveWonder, post: 1082951, member: 279786"]
I plan to convert my Honda 600 ZCoupe to electric. Regarding skill level, I can do basic repairs:adjust valves, change plugs but not comfortable going much beyond that. My starting point is to figure if I have enough room in the engine bay. Once I know what motor set up I can use, I would then proceed to the battery setup.

My end goal is to have a reliable car, with good acceleration and a range of 75-100 miles.
Budget: 20K?

After some research I've come up with a few ideas, but I don't know if these will fit in my engine bay.
I've got about 26 inches between the axle shafts. The parts so far are an AC-50 motor, a Honda manual trans, and an adapter plate to connect motor and trans (adapter plate is available). I know the dimensions of the AC-50 motor (about 14 inches, not including shaft) but I don't know which would be the best Honda manual trans to get and thus what size it would be. I suggested the Honda trans as I know there's an adapter plate available, but I'm certainly hoping to get more suggestions for a good set up.

A friend has come up with this drawing as to the basic plan and a pic of a similar Honda 600 empty engine bay:
View attachment 126431
View attachment 126432
Mine is a '72 N600 sedan. I've a friend with a classic mini-cooper with the set-up I think you are refering to. It's a popular conversion evidently to drop in a Honda transaxle in the classic coopers. He used the HPEV AC50 and a curtis controller. I've had my Honda for 24 years and am on version III with a 9inch DC motor, zilla 1k, manzanita pfc20 and a lithium pack of 48 CALB cells. I'm not sure a transaxle-motor arrangment will fit, what with all the other components needed....
As you can see from the pic it's all a pretty tight fit and my motor is stacked on top the original trans. View attachment 126630
[/QUOTE]
Diggerdave, nice job. How does it drive? I think my Honda 600 Coupe may have less room than your N600. "upgrading it for the last 15 years." whew! I see this can be a bit overwhelming.
A friend sent me this link. Again looks like a good possible option. Looks legit to me.
Motor set-up, from China
 

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Hood Automotive tire Vehicle Motor vehicle Automotive design


So with this conversion, is the hood and front of the car sealed enough to drive in the rain and snow- or even wet roads? There are a lot of exposed connections and components, if water should get in.
 

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So, there's been no response to my question. This is the type of conversions we were building 20-30 or more years ago. Then, we consider the project a success if the thing just moved, had maybe 30 miles of range, and didn't blow up too often. Very little consideration was given to obscure and future concepts like IP water resistance standards, color coding of HV wiring, first responder disconnect points, and general overall practicality and safety.

Honda 600 person, if you what to build something like this, you need to understand that it will probably not be a reliable or practical vehicle for every day use. When it rains or snows, or maybe even mist is thrown up on wet streets, you'll have to park it and tarp it. First responders will be at a greater risk if there's an accident and they are attempting to disconnect the battery. Also, the time and potentially scarce resources tied up in this type of conversion could be better used in more practical DIY projects.
 
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