Build Your Own Electric Vehicle

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McGraw Hill Professional, Jul 31, 2008 - Technology & Engineering - 380 pages
6 Reviews
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Go Green-Go Electric! Faster, Cheaper, More Reliable While Saving Energy and the Environment

“Empowering people with the tools to convert their own vehicles provides an immediate path away from petroleum dependence and should be part of the solutions portfolio.” – Chelsea Sexton, Co-founder, Plug In America and featured in Who Killed the Electric Car?

“Create a superior driving experience, strengthen America, and restore the planet’s ecosystems...that’s the promise of this book and it’s well worth a read!” – Josh Dorfman, Founder & CEO – Vivavi, Modern Green Furniture Store; Author, The Lazy Environmentalist: Your Guide to Easy, Stylish, Green Living.

This new, updated edition of Build Your Own Electric Vehicle contains everything that made the first edition so popular while adding all the technological advances and new parts that are readily available on the market today.

Build Your Own Electric Vehicle gets on the expressway to a green, ecologically sound, cost-effective way that even can look cool, too!

This comprehensive how-to goes through the process of transforming an internal combustion engine vehicle to electric or even building an EV from scratch for as much or even cheaper than purchasing a traditional car. The book describes each component in detail---motor, battery, controller, charger, and chassis---and provides step-by-step instructions on how to put them all together.

Build Your Own Electric Vehicle, Second Edition, covers:

  • EV vs. Combustible Engine Overview
  • Environmental and Energy Savings
  • EV Evolution since the First Electric Car
  • Current Purchase and Conversion Costs
  • Chassis and Design
  • Today's Best Motors
  • Battery Discharging/Charging Styles
  • Electrical Systems
  • Licensing and Insurance Issues
  • Driving
  • Maintenance
  • Related Clubs and Associations
  • Additional Resources

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LibraryThing Review

User Review  - John_Hardy - LibraryThing

This is Leitman's update of Bob Brant's original 1993 book. I have read both. Like the original book it suffered from excessive tree-hugging. I read the book for an insight into electric vehicles, not ... Read full review

User Review - Flag as inappropriate

This updated edition (2008) discusses recent electric car developments (like Tesla) including battery improvements, but feels disjointed in its organization and lacks coherence. This edition is not nearly as good as the first edition (written by Bob Brant alone). Though the first edition is somewhat dated (i.e. 1994), it is a far better book -- more organized and understandable. Despite the title, neither edition is truly a step by step manual on how to build an electric car, as they both leave too much specific info out of them for the novice. The first edition gives the reader a basic understanding of what needs to be done and how to do it and is not a bad place for the complete beginner to start. But most people would probably need a lot more detailed info to actually build an electric car.  


1 Why Electric Vehicles Are Still Right for Today
2 Electric Vehicles Save the Environment and Energy
3 Electric Vehicle History
4 The Best Electric Vehicle for You
5 Chassis and Design
6 Electric Motors
7 The Controller
8 Batteries
9 The Charger and Electrical System
10 Electric Vehicle Conversion
11 Maximize Your Electric Vehicle Enjoyment
12 Sources

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About the author (2008)

Seth Leitman, (Briarcliff Manor, NY) is currently President and Managing Member of the ETS Energy Store, LCC, which provides energy efficiency, electric transportation and organic, natural, and sustainable products for business and home use (from energ-efficient bulbs to electric vehicle conversion referrals). Previously, he worked for the New York State Power Authority and the New York State Energy Research and Development Authority, where he helped develop, market, and manage electric and hybrid vehicle programs serving New York State and the New York metropolitan area. Seth is the consulting editor for a series of upcoming titles called the “Green Guru Guides,” which focus on implementing environmentally friendly technologies and making them work for you.

Bob Brant was the forward-thinking author of the now classic first edition of Build Your Own Electric Vehicle.

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