Zivan ChargerBye Bye engineFrontBye Bye gas  tank!The electric fieroRear batteriesCurtis controller.Engine compartmentHeatsink!
LocationKansas City, Missouri United States map
Vehicle1988 Pontiac Coupe Formula
pre-conversion weight = 2600 lbs.
drag coefficient = .350
4 wheel disc brakes - stock
10.5" vented brake rotors - stock
WS6 package,(hardened suspension)
No power steering - stock
Manual windows
Manual doorlocks
Manual seats
15" aluminum wheels
5 speed getrag 282 transmission

So what does it cost to operate?

$.92/day or $.016/mile

I estimate that I use 14kwh of electricity a day to get me to work and back on a 55 mile round trip.

In order to calculate cost, I have to take into consideration the efficiency of the charger, controller, and motor. They are:

Charger 90%
controller 90%
Motor 85%

These multiplied together give me my overall efficiency which is 69%. So even though my motor may only use 14kwh of electricity, I take that figure and divide by 69% to get 20.25kwh.

Electricity cost is seasonal:

First 600kwh/month = $.09/kwh
remaining /month = $.05/kwh


I use at least 600kwh/month just for my house, so to operate my car, I can average .05 and .089 to get $.0695/kwh annual cost average.

$.0695 * 20.25kwh = $1.41/day or $.026/mile

To put this in perspective, at todays gas price of $3.71/gallon for 87 octane, and 25mpg average, that is $.1484/mile.

That is almost 6 times the cost.

MotorWarfield warp 9 Shunt Wound DC
Drivetrainwarp 9 connected to a 5 speed getrag 282.
ControllerCurtis 1231c-8601
Batteries48 Thunder Sky 160AH, 3.70 Volt, Lithium Iron Phosphate
System Voltage178 Volts
ChargerZivan NG3
Heater1500w ceramic element which replaced heater core.
DC/DC ConverterAstrodyne 480-12
480 watt unit. Works great so far, and not too expensive
Top Speed90 MPH (144 KPH)
I didn't do this much.
Accelerationback to stock like a 4 banger.
Range100 Miles (160 Kilometers)
28kwh pack trumps the 24kwh the nissan leafs have!
Watt Hours/Mile220 Wh/Mile
EV Miles
Start:155,320 Miles (249,909 Kilometers)
Current:176,400 Miles (283,827 Kilometers)
Total:21,080 Miles (33,917 Kilometers)
Seating Capacity2 adults
Curb Weight2,740 Pounds (1,245 Kilograms)
The Thundersky Battery Pack put the weight of the car slightly over its stock weight, and the handling was much better.
Tireslemans 205/60R15 pumped up to 44psi
Additional FeaturesThomas vacuum pump
vacuum pump switch
accessory battery
JVC cd/mp3 player :D
Hurst shifter
Controller heatsink with 6 fans
Motor blower
Ceramic heater
Astrodyne 480w DC/DC converter

leadacid data archived below:
battery pack:

215 20ah rating

(215ah x 6.3volts) x 50% = 677wh per battery

677wh x 24 batteries = 16.25 kwh of GO JUICE

tuned for 24 x 6.3v Deka GC15 batteries

After my 55 mile round trip commute, I plugged it in at 6pm and it was finished by 5am. Charge time is less than 11 hrs.

top speed:
This burns up the amps pretty high. I can't keep up this speed for very long the controller starts to overheat, and the battery range goes south.

At 75mph, I am up to 25kw-27kw

Its pretty torquey from 0-40 mph. I can accelerate decently from 40-60, but the kw jumps up pretty high, so I keep the fast acceleration at a minimum.

I will do a 0-60 acceleration time in a couple weekends.

curb weight:
This is an estimate taking the original weight, subtracting the stock motor and accessories, and adding the conversion weight.


I had a slight miscalculation on the battery weight. I was using 68lbs per battery, but according to deka these batteries are 63 lbs.
That dropped my battery weight figure from 1632 to 1510. So that drops my estimated weight from 3900 to about 3800. I can live with that.

paktrakr,stock gauges, and 500 amp meter

about 9k, but I bought some decent features like the paktrakr, vacuum pump, etc.

I found 2 instances online where the fiero manual supposedly said that the drag coefficient of the 1988 coupe was .357 without the rear wing, and .350 with the rear wing. The reasoning was that because of the notchback design, it reduces the turbulence created in the notch portion of car because of low pressure areas. I don't really understand aerodynamics, so, sure...

5th gear seems to be worthless. I am tempted to pull the 5 spd, and buy a used 1984 Fiero 4 speed. It has 4.10 gears, and at 70 mph, in 4th gear, the rpms are at 4200... which is about perfect for an EV. Dang I miss my 84

On the highway, I keep the speed somewhere between 57 and 65 depending if im going up or down a hill, and my kw/h/mile slides from 12kw-18kw. I've been getting 310 wh/mile.


I have noticed that when going down the highway, I use less kw between 62-65 mph than at 55-60. Today, I was cruising at 62-65 mph at 17kwh. I believe the rpm in 4th gear is too low in the high 50's, and the engine is more efficient in the low 60's. Time will tell.


On my 27 mile drive to work this morning, I got behind a truck and semi and was cruising at 65-70mph using 12-15kw. I did this for about 10 minutes of my commute. Wind resistance is a drag... I noticed that I used much less amps, 90-110 during that time. The car was about 1.5-2 seconds behind the truck.


I have been driving this now for 2 weeks. With this transmission, I seem to do very well at 45 mph in 3rd gear, but really need to be 62-66 mph in 4th to get my amps down to the 90-115 range on flat highway. I drove a few days at 50-55 mph and a couple at 62-66 mph, and there is a 20-25 ah drop going faster. I will be buying a regular ammeter to go with the shunt that I have to double check.

I will be using the front grill intake to tunnel fresh air to the controller and motor. After I mount that monster of a 12x12x4 inch heatsink on the controller, I will relocate the controller to the center hump. The tunnel will go from the front grill through the tunnel and into the engine bay. I have a dual-rotor blower from a car AC that will be used to cool the engine and pull air in at slower speeds. 8 x 80mm computer fans will be cooling the heatsink.


I noticed that my rpms are too low. I spoke to a friend that drag races his vettes about it, and he showed me his gear ratio calculator he made in excel. I have 3.61 gears in the back, and would really benefit switching to 4.56 and probable over 5.6x even more. I now know what rpms I am going at any particular speed in any gear. So I can go 55 mph in 3rd gear at 3750 rpms. With 4.56 gears, I would be going 3800 rpms in 4th at 65 mph, which is close to where I want to be.

I also noticed that when I go 55mph in 3rd, I am using 80 amps of power, or 12.1kw of juice. That knocked my kwh/mile cost to 220. That is awesome. I might be able to squeeze 60mph at that amperage, but I will try on the way home tonight. And what is cool is that the hills don't sway that amperage gauge too bad at all.


I was not able to squeeze 60mph out of 80 amps. In 3rd gear, I am at about 63mph at 95 amps, on a flat stretch of I35. I will be getting a datalogger to record kwh, this will help figuring out my total kwh per trip.

I purchased a battery testing hydrometer yesterday, and after a 55 mile roundtrip commute, my batteries averaged 1.21-1.215 specific gravity. This puts me at about 76.4 mile range, if I run the car till the batteries drain down to 50% capacity.


I finally got the heatsink with fans installed on the controller, and moved it into the center hump. I also put a double blower fan on the motor. It moves ALOT of air. After I made these changes, I really have to watch how I drive the car. Because the controller and motor are now cooled very well, the controller does not kick into thermal overload protection, and I can go from 0 to 450amps quicker than a blink. That was not possible before. Providing that I can keep my foot out of it, I use about 115amps at 65mph. This puts me at 247wh/mile at 65 mph compared to 220 wh/mile at 55 mph. I kicked it up to 80 mph a couple days ago. On a flat stretch, my current was at 236amps. 65 mph is plenty fast for me :D


The ceramic heater is installed. It is a 1500w heater, and it works ok. Not blazing hot, but my car cab is quite small, so its enough. It looks like it will reduce my range by 10-15% if I run it all the time.

The car has been running well for the most part. I had a terminal on a battery get loose, and it shorted, melting the terminal completely off. I had a new on welded back on, and I also bought another battery as a spare that I will keep charged up in my basement.

Gas was up to $4.35/gallon 3 months ago, and now its down to $2.28/gallon this morning. Very interesting.


My wife looked at the electricity bill for the past year, and noticed that since I have been driving the electric car every week, our bill has gone up $20 on average. So, I had a slight miscalculation on my cost to operate, and the initial estimate of 2.6 cents a mile has dropped to a more accurate 1.6 cents a mile. In other news, gasoline is down to $1.37. It gets weirder and weirder.

I was having some range problems, and I thought it was related to the cooler weather. I insulated all my batteries with 1 inch fiberglass insulation. I looked at the water levels, and boy were they low. It took me 7 gallons of distilled water to top all of the 24 batteries back up. That was probably most of the culprit. I will need to schedule a monthly battery maintenance to be sure that they are always full.

code by jerry