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Old 05-01-2012, 09:20 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Attempt to Convert 1973 Karmann Ghia

Hi, everyone.

I'm new to the forum and new to EV conversions. I'm about to attempt a conversion on a 1973 Karmann Ghia. I know that several people have successfully converted this type of car (per evalbums.com). Right now, I'm still in "research" mode, just to minimize mistakes. My first question is whether my requirements (desires) for this vehicle are even feasible with the following:

Motor: 9" (WarP 9, ImPulse 9, AMD, D&D???) or 10" (like Motenergy ME1002 10" Series Wound)

Drivetrain: Stock VW transaxle (clutchless setup)

Controller: Open Revolt (can handle up to 144V, 500A continuous)

Batteries: seeking suggestions on lead-acid flooded or gelled... totalling 144V

System Voltage: 144V

Seating Capacity: 2

Top Speed: 55 mph minimum

and the interesting one...

Range: 54 miles???? (I've read some people have approached or hit this range, others fall quite a bit short - I guess I'll take whatever I can get with the specs above, it's just that I won't be able to take the car to work and back on a single charge)

Can anyone tell me if this combination is totally unrealistic? Any suggestions/recommendations?

Thanks in advance!

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Old 05-01-2012, 09:26 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Not an expert here by any stretch, but for a pure electric conversion, to get that kind of range will be very difficult if not impossible using lead acid batteries.

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Mech
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Old 05-01-2012, 09:29 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Thanks. I thought it looked too optimistic... Can you or anyone comment on how to estimate the actual range for a setup like I described previously?
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Old 05-01-2012, 09:52 PM   #4 (permalink)
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DIY Electric Car Forums Site Home
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Old 05-01-2012, 10:14 PM   #5 (permalink)
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You should ask this question on this site. DIY Electric Car Forums Site Home There is one person who replies all of the time who has done a Karmann Ghia, and other VW conversions. He can tell you what to expect from your selections, and recommend other options. If you don't get him to reply gottdi (user name) check back here and I can give you his email. www.electricmgmidget.com
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Old 05-02-2012, 01:18 AM   #6 (permalink)
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Can you charge at work?

To me a 54 mile range is what a gas or diesel car is better used for if public transit is not an option.
Looks like a range of 50 miles with new batteries is pretty common, 250 watt hours per mile seems to be the energy use for every day driving 190 watt hours per mile and down as low as 150 watt hours per mile if you are in a competition and super focused on your driving but in reality 250 is more like it, that means that with 16 6v golf cart batteries you have a 40 mile range to 50% dod or that with new batteries you could make it 54 miles round trip and be closer to the max depth of discharge that you would want to take a lead acid battery to, but that is with new batteries! and with that kind of use they are going to show age really quickly! Steve Heckeroth's 1964 Karmann Ghia has 24 6v golf cart batteries stuffed in his car so his 60 mile range is to a 50% state of charge, with that kind of use he should be able to keep that battery pack for 5 years, at the end of that 5 years that 60 mile range is going to be getting closer to 80% DOD and at that point the batteries are going to age even faster and die at the end of that 5th year, at least that is my educated opinion.

Everyone that I know who has Gel Cell lead acid batteries is really sad right now because they are finding out that they only last 2 to 3 years! sure they have a greater power to weight ratio and you can discharge them a little deeper but they don't last as long, over charge them and the gel gets bubbles, get them to cold and the gel gets bubbles! what happens when the gel gets bubbles? you loose capacity! how do you fix this? buy a new set of batteries.
Flooded lead acid batteries that are rated as a traction battery is what you want, not a trolling motor battery or a RV battery, Golf cart batteries tend to be the most common, fork lift batteries would work too if you could find the space for them but they are bulky.
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Old 05-03-2012, 05:43 PM   #7 (permalink)
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what engine
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Old 05-03-2012, 08:24 PM   #8 (permalink)
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If you have the money to go with Lithium batteries, they are getting cheaper and the chargers and BMS's for them are getting to be more common as well, price still seems to be 3-5 times that of lead acid, but the life span is also 5 times if they have a good BMS on them, you'd also save a ton of weight, giving your car better performance and range.
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Old 05-03-2012, 08:57 PM   #9 (permalink)
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I should go lithium on the Songi when that battery pack is toast.
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Old 05-03-2012, 09:15 PM   #10 (permalink)
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http://ecomodder.com/forum/showthrea...op-6720-5.html

I would love to see this become a reality !

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Last edited by Cd; 05-04-2012 at 04:01 AM..
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