When I got the car, I thought oh yeah for sure, let’s get something bigger in here. Let’s make it go faster. There’s a small Facebook community of Pao owners online, if you search the group for “engine swap” you’ll notice that essentially every week for the past 7 years someone has asked how to do one for this little guy. Practically everyone who has owned this car has at least thought about giving it more power. Many people throw something unnecessarily powerful and large into these things, like an SR20DET from a Bluebird, or an KA24DE. Albeit fun sounding, I’ve come around to thinking why put something outdated into this car that at some point I’m gonna have to pull out again anyway?
So I joined the fold of crazy people who get it in their head that they should spend thousands of dollars to turn an old rust bucket into an electric car. With that decided, I’ve got to figure out what I want out of the car.
Decide what you want out of your electric vehicle conversion
- What do you plan on using the car for? Are you trying to get groceries or track times?
- Do you want the car to be comfortable or fast?
- What about the car as it is are you willing to change?
- What is your budget?
For me, the answers to these questions change every so often. But, for the most part my goal is to get a car that is up on power, not necessarily a track car, but that is comfortable. I’m willing to lose the backseat of the car if need be. As for budget, and to keep my marriage intact, I don’t think I can go much over $20k which understanding what is required is very very easy to spend that much.