Energizing a 1904 Electric Woods Road Wagon

1904 Electric Road WagonThis is a production electric car manufactured in 1904 with lead-acid batteries. Since the original style batteries are no longer available and it never had an on-board charger, SHIFT EV was asked to develop and install a Lithium replacement system.

As ambassadors for early electric vehicle awareness, owners Larry and Scheryl are sharing this vehicle as living history and a mobile museum. While some restoration purists might disapprove of the modern battery pack, the owners have great respect for the originality of the vehicle.  It works with the original mechanical speed control that switches both motor and battery packs into different series/parallel combinations. This provides 4 speeds in forward and in reverse. In 1904 this electric car had a range of about 50 miles. After this conversion, it has a 140-mile range. At top speed, that is a seven-hour ride.   

1904 Electric Woods Road Wagon shifter and steering tiller
With the access panel open, the mechanics of the original forward-reverse switch are visible. The electric drive system on this car is stock after the battery connections.
Woods Road wagon picture from the era
This view from behind shows the multi-speed switch in the upper right.
Original photo of 1904 Electric Woods Road Wagon motor
Entire power system charging and balancing on the bench
The lithium battery pack system is shown charging and balancing on the bench with J1772 connected. This design will not prevent a replica of the stock battery pack from being installed later. It accurately duplicates the original two sub-pack voltages, while offering significantly more safety and range.
1904 Woods Road Wagon with LiFePO4 batteries and chargers