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scientastic
I'm probably going to post more details soon, but I've got a multi-year project almost at completion. The project is to convert my 2002 Elantra GT hatchback into an electric vehicle.

I chose the Elantra because it was rated "best bet" for a used car in its category by Edmunds.com, and because it had good overall characteristics for an electric vehicle conversion. The hatchback in particular is great, because you still have room in the back for stuff even with batteries added in the back. Plus, it's a bit more aerodynamic with the more gradual slope in the back.

More info, videos and photos can be found at http://www.youtube.com/HyundaiElectra, http://tinyurl.com/hyundai-electra, and http://www.evalbum.com/2083. I might get around to posting some more when it's done, which I hope is soon.

The biggest thing now remaining is for me to modify the rear suspension to carry the extra 700 lbs of batteries. Yep. Crazy, huh? Well, I've looked into it, and it seems like the best option is to order custom springs. Do any of you have any other good options? I tried to find air shocks for the Elantra but wasn't having much luck, other than very high-end options usually bordering on if not exceeding $1K.
elantraelite
Sounds like a pretty neat project. Here in Australia there is a company that converts the Hyundai Getz into an Electric car
NevynPA
SWEET DEAL! Another EVer *AND* an Elantra to boot! Congrats on it! I know our transmissions, some of them, came from Mitsubishi for a while. I wonder if suspension from their little pickup truck would fit?

The other thing I'd recommend is ask around in the "Fossil-Fuel Free" section of ecomodder.com - there are 10-15 guys running around there with EV conversions.

I hope to join them someday!
sarge
I'd say look into the Tiburon springs - I believe the 03GTs had a 'hardride' suspension that is a bit beefier. And since you're adding the additional weight they should be a good match. You should be okay with stock struts or upgrading those to KYBs or the like should be good. Also grab the 19mm swaybar from the 03 Tiburon and you'll be able to keep the corners happy with the extra weight. I would say look into Eibach or H&R springs, but I don't think you're looking forward to having a lowered car.

Looking forward to your progress!!
ROG
i watched the videos it looks like a awesome deal. im kinda jealous. i wouldn't mind having a electric car for around town driving.
streetfighterguy
just get the dimentions from the springs you have then go to the junkyard to match it up to something there that has a better load. If not find a set that doesn't quite fit and cut them down a bit.

It is a bit rough but that could be a starting point.
cobas
Will the front springs fit in the rear struts? I never tried, but figure the car has a worse than 60/40 weight distribution stock, so the front springs must be a lot stiffer than the rears. Might be a cheap solution if they do fit but I've never tried.
sarge
I doubt they will fit...in fact pretty sure they won't

the fronts have a much larger diameter top and bottom.
NevynPA
Starting out lowered would be bad, very bad. If anything, EV converters normally go about an inch or two higher, depending on weight of the pack, so that it comes out about "normal" once loaded.
popeye
Impressive.

The thought of something like this crosses my mind from time to time as I make my 12 mile journey to work, but after watching your vids, I am not able to complete such a project it's just far to big for me.

Kudos to you sir!
jamhandman
Nice, the elantra looks great BTW!!
flcerberus
Wow that is pretty cool man. I would not know where to even begin. It would be interesting to know what the new weight of your car is with the batteries? Also are all the safety features still operable, ABS if the car had it and are the airbags still functional?
2001VE
Great project ; very impressive.

You are obviously have quite a bit of electrical experience.

I would remove one of the rear struts and visit a spring shop.
They might have to fabricate something custom to handle that much weight properly.

The hatch model is heavier in the back end that the sedan ; even before the batteries.
Upper strut braces to reduce body flex might be a necesity as well.

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