I need a van with an elevator for a wheelchair in the back as my future means of transport.
Electric of course.
Because of strict regulations for the electrical parts I want use components and systems that have been declared road legal as part as a type approval.
Transplanting a drivetrain and the electrical system from a Leaf into an older type van (like a VW up to '91) with an elevator already fitted, seems to be the best option.
That makes sense. The easiest fit into a third-generation Transporter (T3) might be a small Tesla Model S/X drive unit, because that motor sits behind the axle like the VW engine - the Leaf wouldn't fit with the T3 suspension and structure because it sits ahead of the axle line. The LT has lots of room to work with and the suspension is being completely replaced, but something like a T3 doesn't have that kind of space, and replacing the whole suspension doesn't seem like a good route for easy approval in a highly regulated country.
Fitting an entire Tesla battery pack into a VW van is another matter. See Kevin's "ICE Breaker" project
(Tesla drive unit into T1) for one example (of a small drive drive unit, and 3/4 of the battery modules), but note that a complete change in suspension shouldn't be necessary (especially in a T3).
One challenge with the complete powertrain from a production EV is that the system doesn't want to run with critical parts missing, which is likely to be the case. The approach used by some people is to replace the controller with one which they can program, but you would need to check if that meets the approval requirements.
On the other hand, a Leaf (or VW e-Golf) drive unit would fit in the front of a T4, fitting very much like the original transverse engine. There would still be the challenges of fitting in the battery, and making the control electronics work.
So I'm very interested to see how this conversion goes. For instance the driveshafts. Apparently, they don't pose a big problem for the TS, but I'm very curious how he solved it, since they are clearly not from the donor cars.
In addition to this project, Kevin's project and others have described building halfshafts which fit the drive unit one end and the base vehicle's hubs on the other end.