Layout planning

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The plan is to replace the internal combustion engine with a power/motor/inverter package with the following properties:

Enough energy storage to travel 50-60 miles at highway speeds

Using an estimate of 13kW to maintain 60MPH speeds on level surface, a 15kWhr pack size is the ideal point that fits, matches the weight and allows 60 mile range.

This implies a 70-80% discharge level for a 40 mile round trip that extends the cycle life of the cells significantly relative to the 100% depth of discharge cycle life of over 1000 cycles. This would achieve 20 years of life based on 300 40-mile trips per year.

Same weight and weight distribution

This will maintain the handling traits of the car under full power and in the curves.

Keeping the battery pack in one location will help reduce unwanted variables in the battery system that have effects in cell balance. The closer the temperature balance among the battery cells, the closer the voltage balance which plays a role in the total capacity.

Another future upgrade, as prices fall on Lithium Ion cells (from increased EV use), a full size pack will be placed in the old fuel tank location without affecting interior space and more than double the driving range.

One reason for choosing rear wheel drive is for greater space in the engine compartment to improve odds of fitting the full size battery pack. In this case, the transmission is located in the tunnel rather than the engine compartment which is significant for this goal.

Secondly, RWD configuration is much more appropriate for handling this level of power delivery without causing torque steer or traction/steering control problems.

EV component locations

Since the lead/delivery times for the EV components are 4 months, I am in the waiting mode for this hardware. So, to model and design the battery box, I must first model the motor and inverter and plan their exact positions. This will confirm the details of the fit needed to proceed with the construction of the battery box.

After some study of the available space to fit the desired 2000 cells, this is the result. The lower surface of the wooden reference board has the shape of the hood’s inside lining surface. Image of the pack by itself

Cooling System

The original radiator will be used for cooling these four EV components:

  • Motor
  • Inverter
  • Charging system
  • DC/DC converter

They all share the water cooling system and dissipate heat at different times over the charging/discharging cycle.

The electrical drive system generates only 10% as much heat as the original ICE system so the cooling system has much more capacity than will be used or needed.

The radiator fan will run automatically when the charging system is plugged into the AC outlet and actively charging.

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