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Triumph Spitfire Practical Electric Conversion?

by Michelle
(Winnipeg, MB, Canada)

Nice Older Triumph Spitfire to Convert

Nice Older Triumph Spitfire to Convert

Is it practical (money and technical-wise) to convert an old Spitfire to an EV? I mean, for instance, will the weight of the EV components exceed the suspension's original design? Will the small size of the car preclude conversion?
(The car is 1800 lbs, soaking wet, and the motor is 200 Kg.. about 430 lbs. Front engine, rear drive, rear gas tank.)

I've noticed that most of the EVs described are front-wheel drive... Is it just because they're newer vehicles, or is there a problem with rear-wheel drive, front engine cars?

I'm not after power and speed, I'd much rather have fun and longer range. Are there options?

Hi, Michelle!
Yes, it's a practical conversion, as much as any old car is a practical conversion. I'm less concerned about the "Spitfire" part than the "old" part; )
About the weight limit: unless you're converting a pickup, you'll always want to reinforce the brakes and the suspension. Folks who race these little guys already do this, for different reasons.
There was this high school in North Carolina once...let's see if I can find the link. Here it is, the high school Spitfire conversion. Anyway, there was this high school in North Carolina that converted a Spitfire to electric and then entered it in the Carolina EV Challenge. They said they rebuilt the braking system and installed Carerra competition shocks and springs.

No, there's no problem with rear wheel drive. Front wheel drive, rear wheel drive, and four wheel drive vehicles have all been converted. If you read something online that makes you think otherwise, I might suspect that it is simply because most EV conversions are done by amateurs in their own garages; amateur in electrical engineering knowledge, and amateur in automotive knowledge. They may simply not know how to do something, and give it up as too complicated.

If you want "fun and longer range" over sheer power and speed, you may want to consider an AC drive system.


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73 Triumph Spitfire EV Conversion?

by Charlie
(Albany, GA, USA)

Triumph Spitfire - Great EV Conversion!

Triumph Spitfire - Great EV Conversion!

I have a '73 Spitfire that I bought as a restoration project. Well, after seeing online how someone had converted their spitfire to EV, I thought, "Hmmm."

What do you think? The car fulfills all the criteria for a good conversion vehicle (small, manual transmission, lightweight, with no pesky on-board computer). Do you know anything about "Ampmobiles" in South Carolina? They seem to be the closest conversion shop to me. There's no way I would attempt this myself.

Hey, Charlie!
Yes, yes, yes.
You're on the right track all the way around. I do know Ampmobiles in Ft. Wylie, as a matter of fact. Read my interview with them here; )
I love this car. I LOVE this car. It's beautiful, it's going to make a great EV, and you're going to love it, too!


P.S. As Clint Eastwood said, "A man's gotta know his limitations." Electric car conversions for the mechanically challenged here.

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