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jackbauer 03-01-2018 09:40 AM

1,000 Euro EV Build
2 Attachment(s)
So I'm starting a new project. Probably quite insane but I think I can pull it off. In short, I'm going to try and perform a practical EV conversion on a BMW E36 for 1,000 Euros or less. I have set the following rules :

1) No lead acid batteries allowed
2) Range of 40 miles and top speed of at least 70mph
3) Total conversion cost including batteries of one thousand Euros or less

Now, I'm not totally mad (ok I'm halfway there) as I can now seem to get Opel Ampera / Chevy Volt packs for around the 500/600 Euro mark here in Ireland. I think this leaves me enough room to do a nice simple DC conversion with all the normal addons like power steering/brakes/heat etc.

I picked up the cheapest E36 in Ireland for 200 Euros. A 96 saloon with ....wait for it......248,000 miles on the clock, a truly horrific 4 cylinder diesel engine and a smell of sheep from the interior...

Stay tuned to see if (when) I screw this up:)

Daox 03-01-2018 10:15 AM

Should be interesting! :)

Stubby79 03-01-2018 11:19 AM

I'll watch! :thumbup:

cRiPpLe_rOoStEr 03-01-2018 12:46 PM

I have no clue about the costs there in Ireland, but with 1000 it would be impossible to do a similar project in my country even if lead-acid batteries weren't out of question.

What motor would you consider to use? Would a rear-end out of a Rav4 4WD hybrid be out of question? BTW what are you going to do with the old engine?

jackbauer 03-01-2018 01:00 PM

freebeard 03-03-2018 01:55 AM

About 2700lb? Do you expect to gain, lose or maintain the weight?

Have you followed the locals on open-source controllers?

What's you budget/plan for the battery box?

Win or lose, it will be fun to watch. :thumbup: I have a donor vehicle with a 1750lb target weight and also a Lexus LX400h drivetrain. If I could complete a conversion from that point for US$1250 (with a heat pump) I'd be stoked.

Whelp, nevermind.

I watched the i3 first spin. I have trouble with the terminology but the first commenter Max Torque describes something that sounds like the buried magnets Toyota HSG uses to counter back-EMF at high RPMs.

So as not to go off-topic I looked at but I don't see an i3 build thread. Could you show putting one in a Beetle for me? :)
5/6 manual/auto?

California98Civic 03-03-2018 11:06 AM

That does sound mad. This should get interesting. Have you ever done a conversion before? (I have not, though I "built" my ebike selecting the parts myself.)

freebeard 03-03-2018 02:06 PM

California98Civic — I've followed his work for a few years. Check out the channel page at

puddleglum 03-06-2018 01:43 AM

I'm looking forward to this one as that's in the doable price range. One of my favorite BMW's as well.

thingstodo 03-06-2018 04:25 PM

So ... THAT`s why you are interested in the original 500A Cougar controller
I see why you have a sudden interest in Paul`s old 500A MOSFET design.

Well, I`m in. And subscribed. If you have any interest, I have Adam`s updated windows (7, 8, 10) program for the streaming data from Paul`s Cougar controller. But Adam will likely send it to you himself.

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