Chevy will begin selling electric vehicle conversion kits in the second half of 2021

Polycount

Posts: 2,689   +566
Staff member
In brief: Electric cars are more popular than ever, but not everyone -- even those that believe in EVs -- wants to give up the comfort of their current car just to go green(er). Fortunately, they may not have to, as long as they're a GM customer. According to new reports, the carmaker plans to sell electric "crate motor kits" that can convert gas-powered vehicles into EVs with a bit of elbow grease.

To give the world a better idea of what might be possible with kits like these, Chevy decided to take a 1977 K5 Blazer truck and install one of these "eCrate" motor kits directly into it. Chevy didn't run into any issues during the installation process from what we can gather, and the Blazer runs just fine.

Notably, Chevy didn't have to implement too many unusual components to get the vehicle running on electricity -- 90 percent of the parts used in the Blazer's conversion came straight from the company's Bolt EV. This will also be the case with the eCrate packages, though the exact components may vary when these kits actually launch.

In the Blazer's case, the only extra parts Chevy needed to include were an electric power steering system, a controller to "send information on speed" (and other details) to the Blazer's original gauges, and an "electric vacuum booster for the brakes," according to autoblog.

Obviously, with or without an eCrate package, a total vehicle conversion is not something to take lightly. The kits will definitely still be geared toward auto heads more than the average driver. However, if you are the type of person who knows every component of your vehicle from the inside out, these packages could give you quite an advantage.

As far as the package's contents, Chevy hasn't announced a full list yet. However, autoblog claims there's a 60-kWh, 400-volt Bolt battery pack and a 200 horsepower, 266 pound-feet of torque Bolt motor.

It's unclear how much the eCrate packages will cost, but Chevy will reportedly begin shipping them out to regular consumers sometime in H2 2021.

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scavengerspc

Posts: 707   +515
TechSpot Elite
Looks like Ford is going to be doing this too. I have a 66 Bronco with a 289 and a 77 Bronco with a 400. Both are in absolute mint condition. While this conversion is interesting I hope I have the strength to resist at least on those 2. Though I admit the interest it would attract, not to mention the disgust seems like something I could have fun with.
 

Uncle Al

Posts: 7,597   +6,113
Sounds like a great idea for those that want to keep their Chevy and convert it over. Cost will no doubt be a factor and we'll have to see how many auto shops (including Chevy dealerships) will pick up on the idea so those that aren't shade tree mechanic's can still take advantage of the deal. Now the big question is how long before Ford & the rest of GM follow Chevy's lead .....
 
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HofyPC

Posts: 70   +60
And what is the limited range? Even an EV with 250-300 mile range is not enough for some of us.
 

bviktor

Posts: 271   +476
They need to figure out how to do this cheap and in masses. EV adoption would skyrocket. Especially with those who only use these cars for cruising around town and so it'd only need a small, cheap battery. Imagine the reduction in emissions when taking off those ancient ICEs from the streets.
 
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captaincranky

Posts: 16,211   +4,970
Do they come with fire insurance?
Relax! If you're doing one of these conversions, make sure you do it in your own garage. That way, (maybe) your homeowners insurance will cover it, and build you a new garage, to boot.

(Although you might want to read the fine print on said insurance before you start. You might have to pay extra for a rider to cover ineptitude at foolish projects)
 

candle_86

Posts: 579   +502
They need to figure out how to do this cheap and in masses. EV adoption would skyrocket. Especially with those who only use these cars for cruising around town and so it'd only need a small, cheap battery. Imagine the reduction in emissions when taking off those ancient ICEs from the streets.
No thanks, I don't like eletric, range is limited, and it honestly ruins a classic, this blazer they did this to is now worth absolutly nothing, it would have been better to light it on fire than make it an EV.
 

scavengerspc

Posts: 707   +515
TechSpot Elite
No thanks, I don't like eletric, range is limited, and it honestly ruins a classic, this blazer they did this to is now worth absolutly nothing, it would have been better to light it on fire than make it an EV.
[Joking]
And here we have candle_86, always with plenty of one-way tickets back to the 1940s. ;) [/Joking]
 

captaincranky

Posts: 16,211   +4,970
No thanks, I don't like eletric, range is limited, and it honestly ruins a classic, this blazer they did this to is now worth absolutly nothing, it would have been better to light it on fire than make it an EV.
Would that be because you can't spell it? :p:laughing:
 

captaincranky

Posts: 16,211   +4,970
[Joking]
And here we have candle_86, always with plenty of one-way tickets back to the 1940s. ;) [/Joking]
The 40's really sucked, (WWII and all that). The 50's sucked due to above ground nuclear testing.

The 60's and 70's though, were a gas, for several reasons.
1: Decent pot was 15 bucks an ounce.
2: They eliminated the need for male haircuts
3: Anybody with a somewhat human appearance, could get more *** than a toilet seat.
4: If you want to throw The Who and the Rolling Stones in there as well, be my guest.
 
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Endymio

Posts: 1,073   +898
[In] the 60's...anybody with a somewhat human appearance, could get more *** than a toilet seat.
Yes, but much of what you got was unwashed, unshaved, and liable to spew fatuous sociopolitical slogans before, during, and after the sex. It balanced out.

The 50's sucked due to above ground nuclear testing.
I'd really love to hear you justify that one.
 
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Knot Schure

Posts: 297   +128
If I actually had a garage to park in and charge up, I'd think about it. But unfortunately, I'm not allowed to install an electric car charging station next to the street.
Not everyone can own / host a grand piano either, you Sir, are just not the intended market for this product at this time.

As per your predicament - I forsee street chargers popping up like parking meters in the future, bloody everywhere.
 

Rayneofpayne

Posts: 251   +236
I can't help but think this is in wake of laws being passed by various US states and foreign countries requiring all vehicles sold be by 2035 all electric minus a few exceptions California won't even allow the registration past a point unless it is a classic registered vehicle.
 

GeforcerFX

Posts: 970   +453
This on a large scale would actually be a more environmentally friendly way to get more EVs on the road. Burns through a lot less energy having to make the entire car instead of just swapping the powertrain. Hell I have seen plenty of cars who chassis could prob double or triple the life of the powertrain it was sold with.
 
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mbrowne5061

Posts: 1,692   +963
I can't help but think this is in wake of laws being passed by various US states and foreign countries requiring all vehicles sold be by 2035 all electric minus a few exceptions California won't even allow the registration past a point unless it is a classic registered vehicle.
Yeah, but the way that works out is that the 'classic' is in line with the EV registration cut-off. Want to keep your gas car, but the new rules about EVs and registration just went into effect? Great, your gas car coincidentally is now old enough to be a classic. I mean, even all the third generation 4runners now qualify as classic cars in most states. It doesn't mean much except fancier plates, and some exemptions from some regulations (such as this one).

No, I would be more worried about keeping fuel in thing after a certain point. You just know that eventually there will be 'bespoke' and 'enthusiast' gasoline. One or Two-man shops who buy crude oil and refine it into petrol of different grades. You think $4/gallon is bad? Wait until people have to DIY their own gasoline from crude.
 

toooooot

Posts: 1,325   +626
I can't help but think this is in wake of laws being passed by various US states and foreign countries requiring all vehicles sold be by 2035 all electric minus a few exceptions California won't even allow the registration past a point unless it is a classic registered vehicle.
Ignorant and evil to the least protected group of people in their state. That's what the rulers of California are. They talk about all those great things and environment, but when the poorest of their state cant even afford an affordable vehicle, that's disgusting.
Why does it not surprise me that people who talk most about all the good things there are to achieve, they are also the ones that care the least about anyone and anything beside their own farts.
 

BadThad

Posts: 314   +241
Nothing more than a rich guys play project. This kit will certainly be north of $20,000. That buys about 10+ years worth of gasoline.
 

HofyPC

Posts: 70   +60
Environmentally friendly? How? A 1,000# battery takes 500,000# of raw material to manufacture. Then all the machinery and energy to transform that raw material into a finished product. Keep dreaming.
 
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