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5110 Days of genuine trouble-free motoring on veg oil from 18th June 2008 to 16th June 2022 - read more

Electric Car Conversion

Converting a Combustion Engine Vehicle to an Electric Motor

If you weren't already aware, it is possible to take any petrol / diesel (combustion) engined vehicle and convert it to run on a powerful electric motor... Tear out the smelly, oily, smoky bit, and that big container filled with highly flammable liquid, and replace these with a clean electric power-plant and a collection of batteries.

Dear Elon Musk,

If you happen to have any spare electric motors cluttering up your garage, could you bring yourself to push one my way please. I'll be your best friend and everything. It's just that they cost as much as a new car, you see, so your average bloke like me just can't afford one. Oh, and I'll need a suitable controller as well - just as expensive as the motors they are. And then there's batteries, the most expensive part of the whole package I hear. Don't get me wrong, I know there's companies out there converting vintage sportscars for the rich and famous, but like I said - I'm just an ordinary bloke that would hate to see his wonderful old car lost forever because no one loves diesels any more.

Love and kisses, your new best mate


Okay the chances of Mr Musk or any other high-flyer reading the pages of my website are slim indeed, but it's my fantasy and I'll do what I want with it. If someone gave me the goodies, I'd do the unthinkable and show everyone, step by step, how these vehicles that no one wants around any more (like Landcruisers, Land Rovers, Pick-Ups, etc) can be made good. But anyway...

Improving On The Old

Electrically converted vehicles are often faster. They can have phenomenal acceleration previously only experienced by Supercars. They're quiet - just the gentle whine of the motor and the sound of the tyres (plus the stifled euphoria of the driver). They have a limited travel range between charges, but it's now possible to have this in the region of a couple of hundred miles... not bad. They are virtually maintenance free and, biggest shock of all, are amazingly good to the environment (if you source your electricity cleanly).

The Cost

So why aren't we all rushing out and buying a conversion kit? Because it costs a fortune!!!

For the price of a good electric motor, you can buy a small electric car. The motor needs a dedicated controller, a clever electrical gizmo that not even I would be daft enough to try and make and these tend to be specific to a motor and cost as much, if not more, than the motor. And then there's batteries... I won't bore you with this amazingly complex subject, but battery technology has really come on - but it's still so expensive, the single largest budget item of any electric build I hear.

Electric Car Conversion Companies

If you're lucky enough to have the sort of money available that could purchase one of Mr Musk's excellent vehicles, well... well you probably wouldn't be here. But if you do and you are, there are companies out there that will take your vehicle, remove all the nasty fossil fuel bits, and bring it back to you looking as good as it always has but performing like an over-zealous athlete on steroids. This means there are now lots of old Porche's and the like zipping down the roads overtaking their younger combustion counterparts and leaving them in a strictly hyperthetical cloud of smoke.

But what about the rest of us. What about your average Joe?

DIY Electric Car Conversion

It is possible to buy all the parts you need to convert your vehicle. Many people have done it but probably most of these have had to convert on a compromise... not quite the motor they'd have really wanted... just the minimum number of batteries so very low travel range... not really the best controller so its best not to drive above 50, etc. I'm not knocking any of these fellows - I deeply admire them - they have more courage and conviction than I do. And these people are helping to turn the market tides.

Market Forces - Volume Sales

Only when more people buy electric motors, controllers and batteries to convert their beloved vehicles will the price begin to drop. Unless some very brave billionaire takes the initial loss (and when have they ever?) to start mass sales, then the rest of us will have to wait.

The problem is we've been waiting. The electric car is not new. It was conceived at roughly the same time as the combustion engine - and that's a fact!

Goodbye Diesels

With world markets turning away from Diesel Engine production, those of us with diesel vehicles have got to go with the flow or strike it rich... Only the fortunate few can save those wondrous diesel beasts. Sorry, it's not just diesels of course. In the UK there's quite a diesel following (traditionally they've always been more efficient than petrol), but large petrol engines are equally popular and certainly more so in other countries. But if you're on this website, you probably want to convert a diesel... maybe you want to save a few quid on running costs - in which case forget electric conversion... but maybe you want to keep your old diesel on the road, maybe you want it cleaner, more efficient and eco friendly - then electric conversion is possible. But good luck with the costs.

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