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Old 17-04-2016   #1
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Electric Panda 4x4

Here's a crazy Sunday thought. I see more and more electric vehicle conversions popping up and as we all do love our Pandas: Why not an e-Panda?

My train of thought goes as this: Take a Panda 4x4, remove the prop shaft, put a electric motor to the rear differential. Leave the front diff with petrol/diesel engine and everything else intact.

48V 200Ah of lithium cells with control circuit would come in at about 70 liters of volume and 100-110 kg. This gives us ~10kWh, enough to be useful around town even for all electric drive.

How would a Panda drive at city speeds with just rear-wheel drive? I have a hard time imagining this but lower speeds I can't see an issue.

Controlling the engines. The 4x4 now has two drivetrains. This can be a very advanced or very simple system. Anything from just using one engine at a time (a second throttle?) to something really clever and computer controlled. I put this as a later todo to solve.

My last remaining question mark is to get the car registered to be street legal after the conversion. There's an organisation dedicated to this in Sweden called SFRO. From all I can tell you can go from 0 to street legal and registered in a few months and 7000 SEK (~600 GBP).

My back of a napkin calculations:
A Panda 4x4. ~30k SEK (~2600 GBP)
Lithium cells with BMS < 40k SEK (~3500 GBP)
Electric motor... Haven't dug into this but depends on how fast we want to go in electric mode. Let'ss say ~1000 GBP fitted for the sake of the argument.
Charging, installation, misc. at least 1000 GBP more.

So it's not unfeasable to go for ~100000 SEK (~8650 GBP) all in all. Including the Panda. Not cheap in old car terms, but it'd net you a plugin-hybrid Panda 4x4 and is still less than a new Petrol 4x4!

Thoughts, comments? This is just an idea in the back of my head and not an actual project for the next year or two.
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Old 17-04-2016   #2
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Re: Electric Panda 4x4

Technically it would be interesting but in reality I think it's just a good for spending 6000 on a 2500 car and making it worth less than the 2500 start price. It would also be really difficult to insure and on an economic level would never ever recoup the outlay, not even close.

If you were to do it, it would make a great build thread
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Old 17-04-2016   #3
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Re: Electric Panda 4x4

Quote Originally Posted by daveofkent View Post
Technically it would be interesting but in reality I think it's just a good for spending 6000 on a 2500 car and making it worth less than the 2500 start price. It would also be really difficult to insure and on an economic level would never ever recoup the outlay, not even close.
Oh no it will never make financial sense. My diesel panda is really cheap to drive and own as is and will remain so even if fuel prices rise. If I'd do something like this it'd be to still my environmental conciousness and for the techical challenge, not to save money.

Let's say I spend 2000 GBP a year on fuel, even if I could divide that by a factor of two (I wouldn't) that'd give me 6 years to get the investment back, and by then who knows what shape the batteries will be in... And now we haven't even begun to value the hours put in!

Quote Originally Posted by daveofkent View Post
If you were to do it, it would make a great build thread
Indeed it would!
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Old 18-04-2016   #4
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Re: Electric Panda 4x4

Fiat have brought out an electric 500 for California. Link is below.

http://m.fiatusa.com/en/mobile/vehic...?ref=/en/500e/
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Old 11-07-2016   #5
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Re: Electric Panda 4x4

So I am glad I am not the only person to have entertained this idea. Although I was thinking of recommissioning a mk1 non runner. My biggest issue is That there doesn't seem to be any literature on how to get the conversion signed off for UK roads. There are companies that will do the work in Wales (at a price) :s but no easy to find guidance on legality.
Does anyone have any experience with this?
Liam
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Old 11-07-2016   #6
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Re: Electric Panda 4x4

Quote Originally Posted by lprescott View Post
So I am glad I am not the only person to have entertained this idea. Although I was thinking of recommissioning a mk1 non runner. My biggest issue is That there doesn't seem to be any literature on how to get the conversion signed off for UK roads. There are companies that will do the work in Wales (at a price) :s but no easy to find guidance on legality.
Does anyone have any experience with this?
Liam
FIAT have made Elettra version of small car for decades..

I KNOW you don't "need" a gearbox with a modern e-motor - (but surely using a more basic / primitive motor = in place of the FIRE) and using the rest of a panda's running gear seems perfectly workable,
and apart form being petrol free shouldn't need ANY sign-offs for legality..??

you are aware you'd still be paying @130 a year to tax it.., as the original registration sets the fee..

Charlie
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Old 11-07-2016   #7
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Re: Electric Panda 4x4

The problem with the elettra is there aren't really any left.
The other thing I should note is I was thinking of going more hybrid than all electric. Stealing some 4x2 running gear from a written off but sound 1000 and using the 4wd engage lever to fire up power to the rear wheels. There are obvious issues with this plan like added weight but in theory it should provide a quieter ride
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Old 14-07-2016   #8
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Re: Electric Panda 4x4

TBH you'll be pushing it with only 48V

There is a reason most Hybrid and EV traction battery units are nearer the 300v mark.
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