MAKING IT NOT SUCK

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For the purpose of awesomeness, we're now calling EV conversions MAKING IT NOT SUCK!

"Breathe the free air again, my friend!" 1

A path to release your (classic) car from the oil spell or the V8>EV morph.

€195k Project to electrify 2 x 1975 Buick Electra, build 20 charging stations and create mobilde app.

To donate for to the project – please call +359 888 919329 or email martin@ecars.bg

Project name: “ECO & WINE TOURISM WITH UNIQUE EV CLASSICS”

For the purpose of awesomeness, we're now calling EV conversions MAKING IT NOT SUCK!

"Breathe the free air again, my friend!" 1

A path to release your (classic) car from the oil spell or the V8>EV morph.

€195k Project to electrify 2 x 1975 Buick Electra, build 20 charging stations and create mobilde app.

To donate for to the project – please call +359 888 919329 or email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Project name: “ECO & WINE TOURISM WITH UNIQUE EV CLASSICS”

We're thinking a lot about Electric Vehicle conversions. Will they make sense with cars like Tesla Model 3 (a mass electric vehicle) coming soon? Eventually, weighing the options, we concluded that making more EVs (than those coming from factories) will change the world a bit more.

What's an EV conversion?

That is to transform an Internal Combustion Engine car into electric. You get rid of the engine, exhaust and all related parts that you don't need, and replace them with electric motor and battery. You'll also need some other components like motor controller and battery management system, but overall the EV is very simple compared to a gasoline car (and there's people like us converting ICE cars to EVs professionally).

To illustrate better – If you convert your (classic) car into electric, it will:

  • Be FUN, FUN, FUN;
  • Start pulling off the line like a bullet;
  • Run on cheap electrons or solar energy;
  • Never cough or smoke again (think CLEAN);
  • Glide quietly and shakelesslly (how about that?) down the road.

And this way you will make it not suck.

That's exactly what we're doing now, but it all started the wrong way and... personal.

Eleven (11) years ago I (the author of this blog) was obsessed with having an old american cruiser – the bigger the engine, the better, I thought.

Schmuck!

And I got it – a decent 1975 Buick Electra came up on eBay, I made the best bid and took it. Six meters lenght and 455 engine under the hood made me feel proud.

Schmuck2!

Got it shipped to Bulgaria and right before the registration the (certificate of) title got lost. Arrrgggghhh! I'm fucked up. Nothing I could do – it had to stay in the garage.

Five years later Chevy Volt concept got me thinking (the EV part of it). I was quickly hooked and started working on my first EV website (this one – eCars.bg). There was nothing like it in Bulgaria back in 2010. There were no EVs. OK, couple of.

Did three more (EV websites) later – to cover it all I could for electric mobility. EV Info platform, EV ads (market) and Charging stations locator. Blah, blah, blah...

Fast forward to early 2014, with all my V8 gaZZ guZZling dreams part of the past, I passionately bought (cash) probably the first electric Renault Twizy in Bulgaria. It was Jan 24, it had no windows, but I was driving it the next day. I was exploding with happiness. Still do.

And then one day this thought just popped up into my mind: "Why not?...

...convert the old beast? I'll morph the V8 into EV. Yessssss!"

And I bought another Buick Electra - this time four door. Boy it's a yacht and those framless doors...

We've spent countless hours to make EVs popular. And Twizy gets unspeakable amount of attention. But what if we do some weird crazy thing next? We're having Buick Electra, dude! What better car to showcase electric mobility with? And we've made a decision – to start working on a project called: “ECO & WINE TOURISM WITH UNIQUE EV CLASSICS”

The idea is to convert these amazing cars to EVs and offer EV eco wine tourist packages for amazing experiences around Bulgaria. Here details:

  • Make two 1975 Buick Electras electric;
  • Install 20 x charging stations at key locations;
  • Create a mobile app;
  • Privide the cars for electric eco/rural/wine tourism around Bulgaria;
  • Kick some V8 asses;
  • Add whatever other awesomeness I come up with.

That's our cranky little €195k MAKING IT NOT SUCK plan!

Remember bullet points from the beginning? FUN, FUN, FUN is mandatory. But to make it FUN, pull off like a bullet, and run long enough to cross at least half of the country, we need to make it strong. So on the tech side, my plan is for:

  • 60 70 kWh battery pack;
  • Pretty decent 100 kW (continuous) power motor + controller
  • 22 kWh BRUSA onboard charger

BRUSA's DTSP12 single drivetrain also seems very appropriate to apply to the differential. Gear ratios are different of course, so we might need to play with the car's differential or most likely get a new one to match. Here's how DTSP1 looks along with some graph:

Having super cool EV converters in my team... we're just set to do some insane electric Buicks. We've done EVs already (and solar charging stations) and we now have a new tech base/facility to start taking EV conversion orders (from all over Europe). With the electric Electras at hand we'll have a great showcase for everyone, to boost EV conversions.

Now let's see the process of sending the 7.5L V8 in the history.

Panic: Wait, 7.5L? Right, sorry I didn't tell you earlier – the thing that SUCKS BIG TIME in the nice Electra is the old 7.5L V8 that produces 205 hp tops, swallowing countless litres (gallons if you will) of gasoline in the process.

Fact: To cross Bulgaria in the Electra you'd have to pay €100 for fuel. Same excercise when converted to EV will cost... €8!

Adding a Tesla

Assumption: An easy way to test most routes the Electras should cover is to add a new Tesla Model S 70D to the project. Somehow 70 sounds magically right to me, and I'm crazy about the Ocean blue color. Pity it's actually darker, which turns me a bit off as I truly like it the original way. It's like €90k so adds up to like €280k budget.

What will the cars do once converted?

During the longer trips I'll have Twizy hooked back to the Electra hitch and then drive it around at the events – imagine the biggest Buick and the smallest Renault, both electric and only electric. They will kick asses all over the place. How cool (and bizzare) is (going to be) that?

Here's the whole picture:

  • 2 x Buick Electras, 1 x Tesla Model S, and 1 x Renault Twizy;
  • The 2 dr. Electra is a showcase car running around the country together with the Twizy attending events (as lovely rendered above);
  • The 4 dr. Electra is also serving as a showcase EV, but I'll also rent it to people coming to see Bulgarian countryside;
  • And the Model S is the modern touch to the project with all three cars in the Bulgarian flag colors;
  • Install 20 charging stations around the country to enable long trips.

Now there's a little Tesla problem here. With no superchargers yet in Bulgaria, the charging may prove to be a difficult pain in the ass. That is, 8 hours – take it or leave it. Even if I have the Dual charger, I can't charge at 32A red industrial sockets as Tesla provides only CEE16 adapter. HPWC is also still not available around. Weird! Tesla, anyone?

Tesla's SC page shows we'll get couple of stations in 2015. I recently asked Tesla's SC team what's the status, but they don's seem to reply such emails.

Shiny car, begging for an electric heart! (Image: Mike Stanton)3

OK guys, that's our new eco story so far. Now let's raise some money to make it happen!

For more details about the project please download this PP presentation.

Thanks for ANTI-SUCKING with us and let's have some EV FUN!

We're raising - to donate to the project please call +359 888 919329 or email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

- - - - - - - - - - - - 
Sources:

1 – Says so Gandalf the Grey releasing King Teoden of Sauron's spell. From Lord of the Rings movie.

2 – BRUSA Elektronik AG.

3 – Mike Stanton - www.supersportmotors.com

Comments (1)

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  1. mani

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