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Discussion Starter #1
Hello,

i am considering starting an EV conversion project for the taxi vehicles in my city and would like to know if this is at all doable.
The proposed donor cars weigh from 1000 kg to 1500 kg (without passengers).
The cars in question are WV Passat, WV Golf 3 and 4, Reno Megane, Opel Astra, etc.
I was wondering if a conversion is possible for these types of cars to carry passengers with a range of at least 100km and with a top speed of 80-100km/h ?
Also what would be the price for a conversion like that ?
Does it make sense to do it with a BLDC like the one from Golden Motor
https://www.goldenmotor.com/frame-bldcmotor.htm
?
Any advice is welcomed :)
 

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Discussion Starter #5
I would recommend visiting Institute Metron in Slovenia (see here). They have converted many vehicles and will be able to give you realistic costs for your fleet based on 'local' knowledge.

That said, it would probably be a lot cheaper to buy older Leaf's and a few rapid chargers :)
Thanks for the reply Kevin,

the issue is that i am trying to find out if i can make a a conversion for up to 7000-8000 euros for the taxi cars which are already available, since as i understood, it would cost around 14 000 to buy a 6-8 years old leafs and that is something that the taxi companies won't go for i think.
So my idea was to be able to offer to the taxi drivers a conversion so that they can keep as much as 2/3-rds of their profits, since that is how much they are currently paying for gas+repairs+taxi license.
What i currently have found is :
1. The battery pack would be 20kw/h which should give the car from 80 - 100km range (Skopje is a pretty flat city) and this would be for a 1300 kg car. The price for the batteries is about 4000 euros.
2. I would need a motor which i think this one should do nicely
Model: HPM-20KW -- High Power BLDC Motor
Voltage:72V/96V/120V
1. Voltages: 72V-120Vdc
2. Rated power: 20-25KW
3. Peak power: 50KW
4. Speed: 3200-6000rpm
5. Rated torque: 80 Nm
6. Peak torque: 160 Nm
7. Efficiency: >90%
8. Dimensions: 30x30x25cm
9. Weight: 39kg(20KW),27kg(15KW)
10: Cooling: liquid cooling
This is the controller that Golden Motor offered to me to go with this motor:
Type: HPC700H Series(For 20KW Motor)
Voltage Range:48V/72V/96V
Rated Current (Max):840A/700A/560A
Weight:5.7Kgs
Dimensions:200x276x85mm
Features: Programmable via USB port, Fuse breaker, Regen Braking, Temperature sensoring

CA-201--HPC Controller Wiring Harness / User manual with wiring diagram included
And also a Gas pedal.
This costs about 2800 euros.
3. BMS - I am completely lost on the BMS and charger as there were so many options out there, but from what i found it would seem that the BMS would cost about anywhere from 650 euros to 1300 euros. I would appreciate any input here from you guys on the forum since i am not at all sure what would be the best match for the BMS.
4. Battery charger - For a Level 2 charger it would cost about 280 euros.

So this brings the total price to around 8500 euros. But i am not sure if there are some hidden costs to this price, i will need your help here.

Again, any advice on how this can be achieved would be welcomed.
I was also thinking about having a couple of stations around the city where the cars can swap batteries so that they would not lose time charging them, because a level 2 DC fast charge station costs around 15 000 euros.
So any experience with battery swapping, like safety issues and such feel free to write them here :)
 

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So this brings the total price to around 8500 euros. But i am not sure if there are some hidden costs to this price, i will need your help here.
How much are you paying for labour to convert these cars?

as i understood, it would cost around 14 000 to buy a 6-8 years old leafs
If you're buying a few you can easily get good 2014 Leafs for 5000 Euros (a lot less if you're prepared to repair damaged cars).

Here, for example, is a 2012 Leaf with 35343 miles, "normal wear" (minor damage), at auction for 2400 GBP (~2700 Euros);

https://www.copart.co.uk/lot/22479088
 

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Discussion Starter #7
How much are you paying for labour to convert these cars?
Currently it should cost me about 500euros to do a conversion with a mechanic.

If you're buying a few you can easily get good 2014 Leafs for 5000 Euros (a lot less if you're prepared to repair damaged cars).

Here, for example, is a 2012 Leaf with 35343 miles, "normal wear" (minor damage), at auction for 2400 GBP (~2700 Euros);

https://www.copart.co.uk/lot/22479088
There are a couple of issues here:
1. It costs a lot of money to import a car to Macedonia, i.e. around 3-4000 euros.
2. I would have no idea if the car that i am importing is actually worth the price (no guarantee).
3. Importing from the UK is no good since the steering wheel is on the right side of the car and in Macedonia the steering wheels should be on the left side.

So basically i am left with a conversion at the moment.
 

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What gearbox and gear ratio would you use between the motor and the drive axles?

What size tires/wheels are on these taxis?

What would be the fully loaded weight that you would want to transport, and what is the nominal and top speed needed with this weight, and what is your acceleration requirement--e.g. how quickly would be acceptable to go from a stop to 60 kmh while fully loaded?

You will also need an on-board DC-DC converter to run auxillary functions such as lights from the 12V aux/starter battery and keep it charged.

Also some sort of junction box with high voltage contactors and fuses.

What will you use to provide heating in the winter, diesel heater or electric?
 

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What gearbox and gear ratio would you use between the motor and the drive axles?
I plan on using the manual transmission of the cars.

What size tires/wheels are on these taxis?
- Average would be 195/65/15

What would be the fully loaded weight that you would want to transport, and what is the nominal and top speed needed with this weight, and what is your acceleration requirement--e.g. how quickly would be acceptable to go from a stop to 60 kmh while fully loaded?
- I would say that +400kg when the car is fully loaded.
- Top speed can be 100km/h and nominal would be 60 km/h.
- The acceleration from 0 - 60km/h would be about 10 seconds.

You will also need an on-board DC-DC converter to run auxillary functions such as lights from the 12V aux/starter battery and keep it charged.
- Yup i overlooked this one, tnx.

Also some sort of junction box with high voltage contactors and fuses.
- I will get the contactors and fuses, but are there some out-of-the-shelf boxes made for this or will i have to build one ?

What will you use to provide heating in the winter, diesel heater or electric?
- I was originally thinking about using an electric 1kw heater, but then i found out a unit called webasto which runs on gas, so i was thinking on getting one of those.

My biggest concern was the motor and controller, if the DC BLDC Golden Motor 20kw was a good choice for a taxi car of 1300 kg, this weight is without passengers/load, so add to that weight another 400kg.

I did try out a conversion of Chevrolet Matiz (small car), which had the 10kw golden motor BLDC and was going up-hills great with a manual transmission.

But i have no experience with conversions and have only read about then, so i am totally new, but thought that this idea i had could be possible :)
I was also thinking of battery swaps but i think that is also not a good idea :)
 

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But i have no experience with conversions and have only read about then...)
that explained a lot...
As others members said, you can't beat the price, the quality and the reliability of a used EV car like a Nissan Leaf.
They have been designed by thousand of experimented engineers and built at many thousand of examplars. How can you think to beat that with cheap chinese parts and no experiment?

You can build an EV for fun, to learn or to have a unique project, but not to save money*.
Your idea to put more EV on the road is good, but you will need to figure out an other manner than conversion to reach it.

*Except by building a poor quality EV or by finding really cheap used OEM EV parts.
 
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