What car is good for converting to an electric car?

Question by Lizzy K: What car is good for converting to an electric car?
What car is good for converting to an electric car?
I’m interested in a car that is lightweight, has a manual transmission, and has room for batteries. I’m trying to convert a gas car to an electric car, and I need one that is light, has manual transmission, room for batteries, etc, etc. Has anyone done that and has advice/know a good car for it? I have a limited price range, and I need a relatively cheap car for it. Any suggestions? Thanks.

Best answer:

Answer by Hannah’s Grandpa
To convert a car to electric, you will find that you don’t need many of the thing at the gas car did, for instance the gas tank, radiator, and motor.
the electric motor is much smaller the a gas one.
many people are building a battery pack to go where the gas tank was along with using the extra space in the engine compartment.
this is a link to what some others have done.



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5 thoughts on “What car is good for converting to an electric car?

  • January 12, 2014 at 8:48 pm

    its cheaper and safer to just buy one. The cars that are easiest to convert are older cars with mechanical brakes (no power brakes) and with mechanical steering (no power steering). These are pre 1975 imports from europe, MG, Triumph’s, VW beetles, corvairs and others.

    There are kits in the $ 4000 to $ 1000 range. A little car will be on the low end. Make sure all the kits and work are certified by engineers.

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  • January 12, 2014 at 9:36 pm

    i would recommend using a midsize or larger car, or truck. the reason is tha toyu have more room for batteries, and you can also install a small gas powered generator to recharge the batteries as needed. i recommend something like a mid 80’s grand marquis or crown vic. when you get ready to do the conversion, check out http://www.motherearthnews.com as they have plans for doing this very conversion.

    if you dont want a crown vic, get something like a ford ranger or chevy s10 pickup. these will also have the room you need for batteries and generator, and they came with manual transmissions.

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  • January 12, 2014 at 10:07 pm

    As a general rule of thumb, lighter cars work better when converting to electric.

    I’d say a ’97 Geo Metro. I found a page where someone converted theirs to an EV.

    It has a 50 mile range, a 70 mph top speed, and manual transmission.


    I’d need your (limited) price range and zip code to get an accurate price of the car, or you could look it up yourself.

    Good luck.

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  • January 12, 2014 at 10:16 pm

    If I were you, I’d use a Toyota MR2 spyder. You could save some weight if you swapped the somewhat high-performance tires for cheaper, thinner ones. Also, the engine is mid-rear, so the car will be well balanced when you replace that engine with your electric motor. If you needed extra space for batteries, you can remove the spare tire and use the small trunk in the front of the car.

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