On 29 Dec 2017 at 10:02, Lee Hart via EV wrote:

> Not quite; he kept the Geo transaxle, but "gutted" it so all it had was 2nd
> gear. It then ran lighter weight oil (not the usual 90w gear lube).

I take it youi're talking about the Sunrise?  I was thinking of the Force. 

I'd be surprised if Worden used the Geo / Suzuki transaxle in the Sunrise, 
rather than the more efficient Force transaxle.  However, I'm sure you know 
more about that than I do.

Solectria / Brusa designed a least 2 custom transaxles that were used in the 
Force.  The AT1000 was driven by a cogged belt and was used until (IIRC) 
around 1996.  The belt was noisy, so they built the AT600.  It was gear 
driven directly from the motor, and was normally sold as a unit with the 
motor.

In the early 1990s, NPR interviewed a Solectria rep (I don't recall who) for 
a feature about the Force.  Unfortunately, I wasn't able to grab a dub of 
the program when I heard it, so I have to go on memory.  They actually drove 
the Force.  Maybe the interviewer commented on the lack of a gearshift, I 
don't recall, but I do quite clearly remember the Solectria rep saying "we 
do remove the [factory] transmission."

That said, a small number of early Forces were built using the Geo / Suzuki 
factory manual gearbox and a rather underpowered BLDC motor.  I think that 
Solectria eventually upgraded most or all of them to induction motors and 
the in-house transaxles, but there may be a scant few, still scooting around 
out there on the roads.

Regardless, my point stands.  James Worden was (probably still is) obsessed 
with efficiency.  

Certainly some of his fine-tuning, such as adding flat belly pans to his 
EVs, was cheap to do and produced outstanding returns.  Junking the stock 
Geo Metro transaxle for a pricey custom-made one might not have been as cost 
effective, but I still admire him for his focus on efficiency.

David Roden - Akron, Ohio, USA
EVDL Administrator

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