Old VW Bus Converted Into Solar-Powered EV Camper
FEB 21 2019 DOMENICK YONEY
This is a Fully Solar Powered Electric VW Bus
Dylan Magaster Published on May 15, 2017
Brett Belan and his wife Kira have built a full electric solar powered
volkswagen bus and converted it into a camper
This volts-wagon truly is a magic bus.
This Volkswagen Bus is the stuff of dreams. At least, it is if you’re the
type to fantasize about owning an electric vehicle that can get much of its
road-tripping energy from the sun. That this thing, this cultural icon, is
also a superb compact camping platform is a huge plus as well. The video
above takes us inside its cozy confines as its owner explains the hows and
whys of its creation.
Inspired by a solar-powered golf cart our protagonist, Brett Belan, created
a dozen years earlier, the project began with a relatively cheap non-running
bus of 1973 vintage. We’re given the impression that it cost about $4 or $5
thousand to pick up. Besides a motor that had already gone to that great VW
jamboree in the sky, it was in need of significant interior restoration.
From the outside, the most noticeable change — aside from the lack of a
clattering of a high-maintenance four-cylinder engine — is the massive solar
panel roof. Usually, we would recommend those interested in a solar-powered
EV to put the panels on their house instead of their car, but in this case
the arrangement makes good sense. For one, the van has the maximum amount of
prime panel real estate available. And two, not being dependent on charging
stations means it can push the exploration envelope without worrying about
the nearest plug.
The big trick here is the entire roof tilts up on one end. Not only does
that allow the panels to be aimed more directly toward the sun, but with its
custom canvas walls, it creates second-story sleeping quarters that can
accommodate the owners and their two children. According to Belan, there is
even enough room for an adult to stand up. Impressive!
The van relies on an air-cooled AC HPEVS electric motor wired to a Cutis
controller. Its batteries are admittedly a little on the retro side, as
Belan opted for lead-acid golf cart batteries instead of a lithium-based
pack. Apparently, these are still capable of yielding a 50-mile range.
Belan says he would like to swap these out in the future for a pack made
with more modern chemistry, which could potentially quadruple its range up
to 200 miles. Other upgrades could include solar awnings which could further
improve its electric grid independence.
There are lots of great little tips in this nine-minute video, so if you
haven’t done so already, mash that play button. Enjoy!
2020 Volkswagen Transport T6.1 Previewed, EV Coming With Two Battery Options
21 Feb 2019 ... an all-electric powertrain option with more than 400
kilometers (250 miles) of range is coming ...
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