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Thread: Electric Classics

  1. #21
    Cutting up an E39 wouldn't be the worst sin in the world either though, it's not like you're cutting up a Talbot Samba where's there's maybe 4 of them left on the road.

    I'm generally unenthused by electric classics (as in proper occasional use classics), I think the way it's being pushed as a "good thing" presents a danger to ICE classics getting exemptions from ULEZs while, if you use new batteries and drivetrain - you're really dramatically upping that cars lifetime CO2 footprint in one go, but due to low mileage, even if you like to use your classic a lot, takes a really, really long time to break even on. Much more than a daily driver, which even there, can require considerable mileage. There is still local pollution of course, but I think given their limit use and small proportion of overall traffic, the local pollution impact of classics is minimal and should be given exceptions so that people in urban areas don't need to store classics away from their home, or that you can stop in towns on road trips.

    For a classic thats more of a cruiser, then EV conversions can make sense, if you're using used components, like a scrapped Tesla/Leaf. I've no real issue with these proper homebrew/scrapyard builds. It's the commercial companies sticking electric power in classic Land Rovers or whatever and marketing it as "eco" that really annoy me. I can understand why someone might want the style of a classic to drive into the city but with the advantages of an EV, but please don't pretend it's good for the planet or anything. In fact, better still, given that there's no real tax downside to using a modern EV, and if you're using it daily, it shouldn't be on a classic policy, then perhaps a better market would be either ground-up retro styled EVs that work better as EVs or conversion kits for electric cars to make them look retro? Y'know a bit like those Japanese mitsuoka conversions, but maybe better executed. Some of them didn't work too well, but there have been some great conversions of Kei Vans for example to make them into 3/4 scale replicas of VW Type 2s or Dodge vans. This yoke is a Suzuki Wagon R underneath.


  2. #22
    Yea, well if the E39 is a diesel, it gets a bit easier to justify I wouldn't feel bad about it, they are being scrapped left right and centre, using recycled EV parts makes for a large extension to the lift of the vehicle.
    As for Talbot Sambas, they should have been cut up ages ago

  3. #23
    Ah now, don't be dissing the pre-history Peugeot 205, I reckon they'd be great craic.

    If you were converting your E39, would you be mounting a motor to the existing gearbox as if it were the engine, or would you be potentially replacing or modifying the axle so the motor is driving the axle almost directly like on a Tesla? ..because if you go the latter route, then now you've got an empty transmission tunnel that could be stuffed with battery cells if you were able to disassemble a battery pack and rearrange the cells in new packs safely.


  4. #24
    The tesla drivetrain option has been done by Damien Maguire but I don't like it, I think it involves too much modification to the car, also has a large price premium.
    Adding a motor to a standard manual bmw gearbox is an option that would be really appealing - I like having a gearbox.
    For older motors they have a limited rev range and powerband so it does make sense.
    A more recent option which works quite well is to use the drivetrain from a lexus gs450h - basically its a 2 speed transmission of a similar size to a normal auto transmission but including the electric motors.
    Keep the existing rear subframe and diff. You've then got pretty much the whole engine bay for batteries. I would be inclined to not add more than the original weight of the engine there..
    And then look to adding batteries in place of the fuel tanks after that.

  5. #25
    What would a likely non-Tesla motor source be by the way? Another EV or some industrial unit sourced elsewhere?

  6. #26
    I rushed that post a bit. very common source for a motor is a nissan leaf. comes with the inverter also. with a bit of tweaking 200hp is possible. hence why they benefit from having a gearbox. besides that yep you can go with off the shelf motors from the likes of siemens.

  7. #27

  8. #28
    I still can't get my head around it for an Evo. Without its original drivetrain what is it?

    When I take a modern ( so not my e39 ) BMW 6 pot diesel -
    which arguably with the zf 8 speed auto, and sound deadening, doesn't sound like a diesel, has seamless power delivery from just over 1000rpm, and in terms of sound, not much - just a very smooth turbine whine..
    I'm thinking, is this far from just having an electric drivetrain in terms of driver involvement?
    It doesn't appear so, and it would be a very easy sell to me to replace that diesel with an electric setup.
    Last edited by philb; 02-12-2020 at 11:34 AM.

  9. #29
    I really don't get it..... We dont have classics as daily's... well most don't. We dont have second cars for practical reasons.... We heve classics and second cars for the love of cars and how they make us feel....

    If electric wins out in the race for the next mass fuel then fine.. I don't really care what pushes my appliance down the road.... as long as its as good or better than what we have today in every way including convenience then fine.

    But I don't want my occasional sports car on electric... I dont want a battery powered horse either. I shudder at the stories of people converting MR2's or other pure low wehigt sports cars to electric.... "its the easiest was to get 300bhp from one"...... They are missing the point completely...

  10. #30
    Quote Originally Posted by miller View Post
    Evo 8 getting a Tesla power unit!

    https://www.facebook.com/HochmanFabricationAndSpeed
    like whats the point with that... The only reason to buy such an otherwise sh1t car was for its engine and drive train...... now you have a boring motor and a sh1t jap crap tin box.....

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