Long Distance Electric Car Motor

by Dan H
(SW Missouri)

I'm building an EV conversion that must travel long distances at a time.

I have a car that weighs 2,000-2,200 lb (2,500 loaded), has sufficient aux. gen. (charge-as-you-go) capabilities, and is traveling at 75 MPH, and must run for 26-30 hours with 5-10 min. breaks/stops every 2-3 hours.

1) Is AC or DC ($40,000+ monsters do not count) best?

2) Can the current crop of off-the-shelf motors (AC or DC) practically and feasability (read: expense of powertrain) able to run like this for 20 or more cycles as outlined without burning up, or needing rebuilding?

Hi, Dan -
Electric car motors are workhorses with very few moving parts, as you probably know.

Let me put it this way: if you've had an old Toyota - I've owned a couple now - you know that at 100,000 miles the engine is just about broken in. At 300,000 miles, if you've taken care, it's still pretty tight. Toyota makes some good gas-guzzler engines.

Well, electric motors (AC, DC, either one for purposes of this discussion) put Toyota to shame. At 500,000 miles, your electric car motor is still young. (This is one of the reasons electric cars keep getting killed, I suppose - because they refuse to die of natural causes; )

Having said that...heat is your motor's enemy, and your controller's as well. Get a big-enough motor for the job so that the rpms stay in the happy place at 75 mph, and your planned marathon should be no problem.

Or I should say, if you have a problem on your marathon, it won't be the motor.

And finally, all things being equal, I think I'd go with an AC motor. I try not to be biased about it, I'm not taking money from HPEVS, but they just make a good AC motor and controller for a lot less money than anyone else.


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