Not many people know these were even made, they came out in about 1998 and carried on through the facelift to 2005. 60 mile range.
Not many are left in circulation, not helped by the fact that you have not been able to buy replacement batteries for them for many many years. They are liquid Nickel Cadmium Batts, and they actually are pretty reliable and long lived, provided they are watered.... and there's the problem, people don't and the batteries overheat and fail.
I have 3 of these cars at the mo, hoping to get at least one working with parts from the others.
Each car has 27 traction batteries, I need to go through and sort out enough good ones for one van, and hopefully 2.
Fun facts! Exempt from MOT Zero road tax. Webasto petrol cabin heater (1 gallon tank) meaning winter range is preserved. 64mph top speed. Single speed. Very quiet. Regenerative braking. (Puts power back in the battery when going down hill or slowing down)
Because they drive so nice. Smooth, silent, relaxing. I bought a brand new Nissan E-NV200, a lot more powerful and has a whopping.... 80 mile range , but over complicated, bouncy, uncomfortable, bad visibility and.. boring. But it only costs about 4p a mile to run and i'm not giving a bunch of children asthma attacks. I love being able to drive around (for last 3 years) without giving any evil oil company money, or pay road tax, and pay almost no tax on the electric (which is on a green tariff)
I'd like to hoard every electrique and just park them in the roads all around the local housing estate until i figure out what to do with them, maybe retrofit them with modern batteries and motors.
We used to have three 02 plate Electric 106s as pool cars at my old work. Everyone else seemed to hate them and claimed they were useless, only went 30 miles etc.
I loved driving them, found that around down with practice that you could just about manage 75 miles and still have enough to get back to base. The game always became how far could you go without actually touching the brake pedal.
The heater in our ones at least was like having an in cabin furnace and heated up in seconds.
Was really sad when they disappeared overnight one weekend.
The biggest problem we had with them by a country mile was that people just couldn't be bothered to plug them in when the got back. It was utterly maddening to go down to the garage at 8AM on a Monday morning with a full morning of site visits planned out only to find the bloody car wasn't plugged in.
Given that you had to sign them in and out, so there was never any question over who the drivers were I never really understood why something wasn't done about that.
Is it not possible to use more modern batteries? Technology has moved on a lot? Guess that involves changing some of the electronics too and maybe pricey but potential for range improvements and future proofing ......
surely i cant be the only one thinking "rip the ever ready's out and chuck a diesel in it"?
Yea, I’d think you are the only one, because In doing that you’d make it a regular, mediocre stock diesel Berlingo rather than the wonderful french oddity of being electric! I remember seeing these listed on the parts system and being intrigued at the time 11 or so years ago when I started my apprenticeship at Hartwells of Bath.
certainly would be looking into upgrading the charging system and batteries to something more modern and higher energy density, sounds like theres a lot if open source stuff with inverters and the like in the EV world.
The batteries are all in series totalling 170 or so volts. 16kWh capacity.
Motor is DC brushed motor.
Technically you could fit some lithium ion batts but you'd have to get hold of a charger that would handle those, and be able to wire it in. Modern EVs tend to run twice that voltage at least so getting a charger off an production vehicle isn't really an option, unless you knew how to mod it.
Then there is the battery monitoring and balancing, you'd have to fit a battery management system as li-ons are delicate things and need to be kept withing fairly tight voltage range (individually)
what had considered is replacing the entire drivetrain from a modern ev , including motor, for more power, range, etc. QUite a big job. you'd have to replace the dash etc as well and figure out how to do 'gear' select and fit different charge ports etc etc