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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I have been interested in the idea of a DIY Electric Car project for a while now - I'm an Electronic Engineer by training, and not super mechanically inclined, but I figured the best way to tie everything together would be a big project. I'm young (23), so a project car/conversion has been off the table - but I'm decently happy that I want to do this, and so will try and commit all I can to this idea :) I saw a couple of conversions in an MGF/TF researching it and kind of fell in love with the idea. The car seems alright to convert, mid-engined with a drop-out rear subframe- some space for batteries (It's not perfect but a pack distributed between front and back could be used. Electricmg.com has done his all in the back in a way similar to what I think I'd like to do)

If anyone's got experience doing conversions in the UK, specifically with parts sourcing and eventually with what legal requirements are in place to get a conversion roadworthy I'd greatly appreciate it!

Your skill level with auto mechanics and fabrication
Functional but not amazing - I do most of my own maintenance, but I drive a car that's only from 5 years ago - and it doesn't break often, so there's not a lot to fix. Can fabricate some stuff decently - though I think i'll end up relying a bit on local friends who are more tooled-up and experienced than I am.

The range you are hoping to get (how many miles/charge)
50-70miles. I am thinking of using salvaged cells from a wrecked EV - this seems a much much cheaper way of assembling a large lithium pack.

What level of performance you are hoping to get
Sprightly. it's a sports car after all. AC motor seems like the way to go, as DC is old-tech now.

How much money you are willing to put into your project
Probably £10-12K as a cap if I can keep it under that (I don't have a great track record of projects sticking to budget...). Figure that using salvaged EV cells, perhaps from a wrecked Leaf or other EV will become more avaliable as time passes - and being realistic with my life where it is at the moment, I'm not going to be starting until next year anyway.

What parts you've already considered, if any.
  • Battery - Salvaged cells from a Nissan Leaf? Aiming for ~120V nominal system
  • BMS - i've no idea what would work well for my pack - more research needed.
  • Motor - Something like an HPEVS AC-5x or Hyper9. The latter sounds tempting as it's a good deal more powerful and around the same price for me in the UK. I considered going DC - but I'm quite keen to have regen braking for 1-pedal style driving. Transmission-wise I'm keen also to make it so anyone can hop in and drive it without much trouble - so keeping the original transmission in place with it's clutch.
  • Charger - Something that can use Level 2 charging stations - maybe not all the way up to 7kW but it'd be nice to know I could drive it a 100 miles in a single day with one or two longer stops. (5-7 hours or something).
  • Accessories - Keep the original (electric) power steering, No idea what to do for AC/heating (but it's a convertible, so minimal)

Thanks for your time and I welcome any tips or advice for someone starting out!
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Some updates since back in August...

Ive got the donor car now, and a better idea of what's avaliable. Current Drivetrain plan is a Siemens Ford Ranger motor and inverter from a forum member.

Malvern is a bit of a trek as I'm from Bristol but it's a kind offer regardless 🙂 What parts did you get into the TF you have up there Skooler?
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Indra had their TF at Fully Charged? I must have been blind, or my 23 year old memory is already going senile! Didn't spot it on the Friday this year :)

I was keen to not work with really small cells too - Pouches seem even sketchier in regards to packaging them for safety, but I had the option of buying a large number of lightly used 18650 cells and avoided that because the labour and high degrees of parallelisation needed scared me off :) Tesla might be able to do that well - but I'm not capable of spending their R&D budget designing a large pack of 18650s that won't overheat and explode etc. Leaf cells seemed like a decent balance between cost, avaliability and complexity of building up a battery pack - and it's proven as well - There is an almost finished MGF conversion in Australia that fits around 20kWh of Leaf cells in.

Currently my project is a bit stagnant as funds have dried up for now, and I've my TF off-road in the meantime. If you're local and want to meet up to exchange ideas etc. let me know :) I'm in Clevedon so that isn't too far away whatever part of Somerset you're in...

edit: It's not my eyesight, it's my memory... I even took a picture of Indra's TF :eek: My bad Skooler for not remembering it straight!
 
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