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· Registered
7 Posts
Discussion Starter · #3 ·
It might help if you give us some clues about your requirements and what type of vehicle you have in mind.
Thanks Galderdi.

Twice I wrote a big intro.... the first time I must have pushed the wrong button... the second time I had added my companys website so that people could see what we were working on... I don't think it got passed by the Admin.

So here we go again.

I have a Client that has given us the go ahead with turning his 41 Willy's custom pick up in to an EV. We will have a full frame built to match up with whatever we come up with.

We have decent budgets and all of the tools and skills to build the project... what we are lacking in is Knowledge of EV's and what components to choose.

I have been reading through these Forums and have conversed with the guys at EV West and HSR Motors so far.

Still not sure of the direction to go.....

· Registered
7 Posts
Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Thanks Kevin.

That Cobra was built just a few miles from my shop. I plan to reach out to them as well.

We have an opportunity to display the Willy's at SEMA this year.. so the clock is ticking away fast.

I like the open source idea... I just don't want to get over my head. I'm good with regular 12v stuff....

So what would you do Kevin? Buy a written off Tesla and use the parts? Buy from a vendor? Is the Tesla motor and suspension the way to go?

I need to figure out some of this soon so that Art Morrison Ent. can build us the chassis.


· Registered
7 Posts
Discussion Starter · #10 ·
I haven't seen anyone in this forum put in a suspension which appears in any way to be better than the Tesla Model S suspension; that's not surprising simply because the Tesla suspension is a typical modern design for an expensive car. The big reasons that I see to use a different suspension (not Tesla's) are:
  1. undamaged suspensions are likely less available than the drive units
  2. buying (even as salvage) the Tesla suspension is expensive compared to using the parts the project car already has, and perhaps even expensive compared to aftermarket components or other salvage parts
  3. the Tesla suspension is designed to work with their subframe, which is designed to fit their structure; the original suspension of the car being converted fits that car properly
  4. the Tesla Model S has a rear track dimension of 66.9"; this is relatively wide (because it is a large car), so it is too wide for many vehicles (for comparison, a stock Lotus Evora has a 62" rear track)

On the other hand, there is a long street rod tradition of using the entire suspension from some donor vehicle... to the point that many cars are essentially re-body jobs on some modern vehicle (often a Corvette), rather than upgrades to components of a classic car. You can't really put a Willys truck body on a Tesla Model S structure, but if you have the fender width available you could put an entire Model S rear drive and suspension assembly (everything attached to the rear subframe) under the back of the truck. You could do the front, too, for compatible dynamic behaviour... again if the width works. With both ends swapped, you would have a choice of front wheel drive (no!), rear wheel drive, or all wheel drive. You would also have one remarkably expensive Willys.

Lets first skip to your last sentence....."What's remarkably expensive" to you???

I don't have an open budget, but we are working with enough to build at the level we currently do.

Currently I am in talks with Art Morrison for one of their chassis. The Chassis with a IFS and IRS is around $25us A big cost of that is the IRS. So replacing that with the Tesla is possible.

I will get a true measurement of the front and rear axles when I'm back at the shop in the morning.

On a drawing from Art Morrison based on another Willy's they have done the front has a track with of 63.125" and 67.5rear"
So the Tesla could fit in the rear....

The all wheel drive would be fantastic.... but at a larger cost and with the days till SEMA flying by..... But how much more???

285 days left to build this..... on top of the other 6 cars we are doing.
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