Education Technology
High Schoolers Electrify a Volkswagen Cabriolet

electric-cabriolet

What’s a great way to teach kids about automobiles and electricity at the same time? If you go to school in West New York, New Jersey, the answer is Ron Grosinger’s after school activity where a Volkswagon Cabriolet is being converted into an electric vehicle.

According to the video below, it will go up to 70 miles per hour, with a 40 mile range. It will run on 12 lead acid batteries, which produce 144 volts. I’d have to assume the current draw is pretty high as well! This should work for most people, since if you’re able to plug in every night, you don’t really need a car with a 300 mile or more range.

The price tag for one of these cars seems pretty cheap at around $14,000. However, once the “hundreds of hours of work” claimed in the video’s description are taken into account, it might not look like such a bargain! On the other hand, you do get to learn a lot about how it works, and hopefully pick up some useful shop skills in the process.

According to the video, you can plug a car like this anywhere, such as at a friend’s house or even at a coffee shop. If the latter becomes a trend, I can only imagine how much money they will have to start charging for a cup of coffee!

0 thoughts on “High Schoolers Electrify a Volkswagen Cabriolet

  1. You start plugging that thing in at friends houses and they might not be friends for long… Especially in New York where electricity is >$0.20/kWh!

  2. That range is going to drop by up to 40% if the batteries get below freezing. Your 40 mile range may not get you to the movies and back home with the headlights on. There are lots of reasons that lead acid batteries are not the best choice for electric cars.

  3. Hi! I am the teaching in the video, Ron Grosinger. This project proved the potential of young students if given the chance. All the work for this project was done after school. No bells, no tests, and no grades.

    Thanks for your interest in this project. To see my classes I offer, visit: RonGrosinger.com

  4. Hi! I am the teacher in the video, Ron Grosinger. This project proved the potential of young students if given the chance. All the work for this project was done after school. No bells, no tests, and no grades.

    “Education is not the filling of a pail, but the lighting of a fire.”
    -William Butler Yeats

    Thanks for your interest in this project. To see classes I offer, visit:RonGrosinger.com

    1. Thanks for doing this, education today is suffering, kids need inspiration like this to keep up their critical thinking skills and to give them hands on experience that they could use in their everyday lives.

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Jeremy is an engineer with 10 years experience at his full-time profession, and has a BSME from Clemson University. Outside of work he’s an avid maker and experimenter, building anything that comes into his mind!

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