Electric Car Parts

The parts of an electric car generally break down into three components that are different from the combustion engine vehicle that is prevalent today. Those three components are what make up the electric vehicle's drive train:

  1. The Energy Storage Medium
  2. The Motor
  3. The Controller and Related Electronics

i-MiEV Breakdown

The energy storage medium can be batteries, fuel cells (and related storage tanks), or even a small combustion engine and generator. In the Nissan Leaf, for instance, the energy storage is in lithium-ion batteries. In the Honda Clarity, it is in hydrogen storage and fuel cells. Both are, however, electric cars.

The electronic controls and related devices do the same basic job on nearly every electric vehicle. They change or control the power coming from the energy source and make it usable by the electric motor that propels the car. Inputs such as the current output of the power source, the demands of the driver, and the needs of the motor are all used to regulate the vehicle through these controllers.

Finally, the electric motor receives power from the energy storage through the controller and propels the car forward either directly or through drive shafts or a transmission.

Many other peripheral units may be installed on the car, such as charging units, power converters, and so forth.

One of the greatest advantages of the electric car is that all of these components are generally easy to replace or upgrade and most do-it-yourselfers can acquire these components and build their own electric car as well.

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