Electric Cars

Thai government is going DIY and building its own converted EVs, report says

It seems the Thai government is tired of waiting for manufacturers to make their EVs available for sale, so it's going to convert used gas cars into electrics.

This is the Honda Fit EV. It didn't get sold in Thailand but that's not going to stop the Thai government from making its own version.

Honda

Converting older cars into electric vehicles was once one of the only ways to get an EV in your driveway, but it's gone somewhat out of fashion as commercially available, purpose-built EVs have become common.

But the government of Thailand reportedly plans to develop its own electric vehicles. Specifically, the state-run Electricity Generating Authority of Thailand (EGAT) isn't content for makers of electric cars to bring their wares to the country, so it's going the way of Fugazi and doing it itself, according to a report Thursday by PaulTan.org.

Now, the government isn't going to just go all willy-nilly, modifying whatever is lying around. It's going to focus its efforts on three specific models that are commonly available used in Thailand. Those are the Toyota Vios, Honda Jazz and Nissan Almera, which we know as the Toyota Yaris sedan, Honda Fit and Nissan Versa.

EGAT is targeting a price of around 300,000 Thai baht (or approximately $9,470) to complete the conversion. This would include lithium-ion batteries, an electric motor and all the associated electronic gubbins necessary to make the thing work.

Whether these converted EVs are any good remains to be seen, and since more are becoming available through more traditional means -- Hyundai sells the Ioniq and Kona Electric in Thailand now, Nissan sells the Leaf and has for a year -- we'll be curious to see if anyone actually buys one.