|Location||Boone, North Carolina US map|
|Vehicle||1972 Volkswagen Super Beetle Convertible|
|Motor||Advanced DC FB1-4001 Series Wound DC|
Added blower and thermostat to cool motor
for the hills in summer.
|Drivetrain||Stock transmission with clutch|
|Controller||Evnetics Soliton Jr with liquid cooling|
Started with a Curtis, but it overheated on
hills. Installed a transmission cooler with
fan to cool the Soliton controller. Kind of
ironic to have liquid cooling in an air-
|Batteries||48 GBS 100AH, 3.20 Volt, Lithium-Ion|
2 packs (4 cells each)in the rear engine
compartment, 6 packs behind the rear seat,
and 4 packs in the front trunk.
|System Voltage||156 Volts|
|Charger||Elcon PFC 3000|
No problems so far.
|Heater||Installed a heater from Canadian EV that |
is wired directly to the traction
battery. Replaced the stock airbox with
the heater and may now have the best
defroster of any old Bug out there. My
wife loves the instant heat.
|DC/DC Converter||Elcon 128v-160v|
Works well. After blowing up a Curtis
converter, I learned I had to add an
inductor to the input to filter the
voltage surge as the voltage of the
traction battery changed rapidly
under high current conditions.
|Instrumentation||Energy Management System from Elite Power |
Solutions provides pack voltage, current,
capacity, and individual cell voltage and
temperature on a LCD display on the dash.
The LCD is part of the stereo that lets
me stream music from iPhone via
Bluetooth. Seems out of place in this
old car but kind of cool too.
|Top Speed||80 MPH (128 KPH)|
Still accelerating, but going that fast in a
42 year-old Bug made me a little nervous,
although everything seems stable.
|Acceleration||Better than the stock ICE (which had a dual |
carb setup). The controller can be
programmed for different acceleration
settings, from jerk your head back to Little
Old Lady mode.
|Range||40 Miles (64 Kilometers)|
This is the most I have pushed it and still
had charge left. Most of the driving around
here is hills and then more hills. On the
flat I think 60 mi is realistic.
|Watt Hours/Mile||350 Wh/Mile |
This is what I average on my 18.8 mile drive
to work through the mountains with a net
elevation drop of 500'.
|Seating Capacity||2 adults and 2 smaller (kids/Hobbits) people |
in the back
|Curb Weight||2,420 Pounds (1,100 Kilograms)|
Pre-conversion weight = 2,000lb
Pre-conver front axle weight = 840 lb
Pre-conver rear axle weight = 1,160 lb
Post-conver front axle weight = 980 lb
Post-conver rear axle weight = 1,460 lb
Added heavy duty coilover shocks to the
back and struts in the front.
|Tires||205/60 R15 Goodyear Eagles with 8 spoke |
rims. Not the best for minimizing rolling
resistance, but they came with the car and
|Conversion Time||Probably ~2 years of sporadic effort.|
Most of the time was spent fabricating the
battery racks, misc. brackets, etc. The
electrical stuff was pretty straight
|Conversion Cost||Greater than $22k. I had to replace the |
controller, add cooler and blower to deal
with heat issues when going up hills. This
doesn't include the car itself, which was a
donation from my father-in-law.
|Additional Features||Added front disc brakes since I increased the total weight by 420 lbs and the stock drums didn't work all that well in the first place.|
|Originally designed and built the Bug for the flatter lands |
of Northern Arizona and expected freeway speeds and 60 mile
range. It was almost finished when we moved to the
mountains of western North Carolina. The original Curtis
1231C controller began over heating so I had to replace with
the Soliton Jr that came with the ability to cool with
Things are much better now but the new controller creates
electrical noise that interferes with the EMS, so I still
have to sort that out.
This Elec Bug is FOR SALE. This has been a daily driver and
spent all of its former life in the arid southwest. Here in
the mountains they dump salt all over the roads all winter
and I'm tired of washing the underbody every week in an
effort to stop corrosion. I think this car would be much
better off somewhere flatter without long winters. Email me