From The Editors Technology

Modification of a Classic 427 Shelby Cobra into an Electric Race Vehicle

With the growth being experienced in the electric vehicles market more and more salvaged and kit cars are being customized into electric vehicles by using electric motors and battery packs. The main reasons for the upward graph of electric vehicles are:

* Their potential to save lives because most electric vehicles have rear mounted engines which reduce the risk to life in case of a frontal collision.

Even if the EV is equipped with a frontal motor it is much smaller than any petrol or diesel car engine and is closer to ground level.

With a smaller or no frontal motor the vehicle becomes safer for the driver in case of a frontal impact.

The area between the driver and the hood is referred to as the crumple zone that absorbs most of the energy of an impact.

With a heavy regular gas engine in the front, the crumple zone becomes more dangerous in case of a head-on collision.

The effect that a crumple zone has on impact is aptly described by Elon Musk, CEO of Tesla, using the example of a swimming pool, “it’s just like jumping into a pool from a high diving board — you want a deep pool and one without rocks in it.”

* EVs are environment-friendly in that they do not add to air pollution as there are no toxic tailpipe emissions when compared to diesel or petrol powered cars.

* Electric vehicles are relatively cheaper to operate.

* They are much quieter and smoother than petrol or diesel vehicles without compromising on speed. The acceleration of EVs can match any
conventional car running on petrol or diesel.

* Home recharging capability of EVs is another advantageous factor in that it saves you from visits to charging stations and the frustrating queues you may have to endure at these stations.

Modification of a Classic 427 Shelby Cobra

A group of friends and motorsport enthusiasts working out of Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada, came up with the idea of converting a classic 427 Shelby Cobra into an electric race car with the intention of competing in EV road races, time attacks and auto cross events.

The E-Power Racing group’s priority was to create a light weight vehicle; hence, their choice of using the Kia Soul EV Battery Pack which weighs only 400 pounds (183.43 kilogrammes) and has an energy capacity of 30 kWh.

The trio chose the mould of a classic 427 Shelby Cobra to replicate the body of the Cobra using fibreglass. The chassis, however, was built by the threesome themselves.

The rear-wheel-drive motor of a Tesla Model S P85, with a 310 KW rating and 600 newton-meters of torque, is being used to power the 427 Shelby Cobra copy with a target of putting the modified Cobra on the tracks by the end of the year.

The total weight of the modified 427 Shelby Cobra electric race car including the driver is intended to be in the 1800-pound range and is estimated to be ready for track testing by the summer of 2017.

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