2016 E4 High Voltage Conversion in SD

This is chapter 2 from my earlier planning thread - 2016 e4 - Build Plan?

To recap - I bought a 2016 back in March from a Polaris dealership in St. Louis, MO. Looks like it was used as a shop/customer vehicle and came with 300 miles on it. Probably spent more time outside that I would have liked but overall, it was in good condition and I think I got it for a decent price. Plus side, since I’m the first non-dealer owner, it’s actually under warranty (although I’m probably going to void most of the warranty with this thread.) I got it shipped safely and inexpensively with George who’s now on the forum @GHTransport and shipped a bunch of stuff for others on here.

My 2 big requirements are 1) need it to be able to go 35+ mph uphill (ideally 45-50 wot) so I can keep up with traffic and not get run over and 2) 25+ mile range.

Ended up settling on -

  • 8kw AC motor (pre-drilled by @Inwo)
  • Secon S4 80v Controller (programmed by @MikeKC)
  • new style gearbox with modified 12.x:1 (bought off @MikeKC but the gears were installed by @Old_Houseboater.) Will try skateboard mounts for sound isolation.
  • Delta-Q charger
  • Tesla Model3 20s battery split in 1/2 by @Inwo and wired up to a JK BMS (Shipped by @GHTransport, along with the motor and charger).

It took me a while to dive into this project. Was accumulating parts, finishing up some other projects, and life just got in the way. Finally got a chance to dive in. I’ll try to post as many pictures as possible as I do the conversion with the hope that his helps someone with a 2016+ conversion down the road.

First step, out with the old which happened in 2 phases.

Phase 1 -
Removed the rear stake-bed and battery compartment cover. Pulled the batteries and donated them to @smspring who was having battery issues. This would get him going until i could help him with a lithium conversion.

Then I was on a month of travel and decided to dive in again this past weekend. I was amazed at how easy it was to break-down the car and pull the rest.

Out goes the battery tray by removing 4 bolts and then I dry fit an empty case identical to the one that has the tesla battery. It fits like a glove!

Moved onto the front. Pulled the hood, pulled the charger, and removed the front-end plastic. Picked up this little tool from amazon to make removing the plastic rivets easier.

Out goes the controller, phase wires to the motor, motor, and gear-box. I managed to get the gear-box out without removing the axels from the wheel hub.

Maybe 2-3 hours tops to get all that done? Considering it’s all similar equipment going back in, I’m hoping the reverse doesn’t take long.

2 silly questions for those that have done this before

  • Have you installed a main disconnect switch? If so, what did you use?
  • Suggestions on how connect battery B+ and B-. I think I might be a few inches short to the factory cables. Can I just make a foot-long cable with battery lugs on each end, run a bolt through it, and heat shrink it?

Goal for early this week is to get everything physically installed and then I can start wiring. Will post as I make progress!

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Congrats to the decision! As I said previously it’s gonna be a one way trip.

I’ve installed a Nissan Leaf main disconnect that I had in the past. It’s not needed but definitely safe.

Regarding the cable extension, yes that’s what I did And also added a what I call a “just in case fuse” right next to the positive wire

I don’t have an actual pic but here is one where you can see what I’m talking about

If your Cables are short No problem.
This is how you can Give your self more room.
On the battery - that’s where your SHUNT for the BMS will go to the cars main Battery -
That will give you another battery post essentially. Now you can just make us a small 1-2 foot cable that will go from your New battery and then over to the shunt.

#2 same thing for Your Disconnect. You will take your cars factory B+ and that will go to one side of the disconnect. And the other side you will make up another 1-2 foot cable.

Dave has these cool High Voltage Disconnects. They are a electrically triggered 12v switch that will connect or disconnect High Voltage loads. You would hook this up where ever you like and then just run a remote wire up to your dash to Connect or Disconnect

I used the same primary disconnect switch as @djgabriel2004 -

I think mine came from a Chevy Volt but looks the same.

Here is a Link to the Thread where we talk about the High Voltage Disconnect. You can see it.

Forgot about that. Are you using one?
I put on on my E2.

Thanks for the input. Ironically, I had one from when I pulled apart a Chevy Volt battery and I remember thinking, I don’t need any of this extra stuff, I’ll ship it off to @Inwo … oh well. I’ll see if I can find one on ebay.

no shunt on this one. @Inwo pre-configured with the current running through the BMS directly. Even funnier, I think I sent him a Tyco contactor out of a 2002 that was used for the heater in that Volt care package. The heater was pretty useless in SoCal… and if you think the early gems had a lot going on under the dash… you should see them with heater tubes going all over the place! pulled those out and it was much easier to work with.

Sounds like I’m all good doing lug to lug with some insulated heat shrink.

Probably coming from a Volt. My bad I thought it was from Nissan Leaf,

$28 shipped on ebay. Have a volt disconnect on its way!

I think @LithiumGods recommended this stuff in a thread a while ago. Good for input motor and output axel shaft splines?

Very good. It is thick, clay like.Lasts longer than anything else I have found.

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Dave I have Not installed the HV disconnect yett

Had a little break in the marathon of MS Teams calls so I snuck out to the garage.

new controller installed (sheesh… was hard to find a socket head that would fit in those small cutouts for screws in the controller.

Oil in the transaxle

Molly paste applied

transaxle installed

Now for the questions -

  • how tight do I go with the skateboard bushings? Service manual says to tighten to 37ft-lbs of torque for the mount strews but I think that’s going to completely compress the bushings.
  • Wiring - @inwo where do I plug in the harness connections?

The yellow labeled wires I’m assuming go into the corresponding pin-outs in the controller plug. For the life of me, i can’t figure out where the black plug goes. I’m sure it’s obvious but I’m missing it.

The black female goes to the throttle.
Then you bring the original throttle cable to the motor compartment and connect it to the male from Dave harness

Pins labeled goes to the Sevcon main connector. Pay attention to this, when you pass the rubber seal part is a bit tricky.

Did you connect FR switch ?

@djgabriel2004 thanks. Haven’t connected any of the wiring yet. just getting everything physically in place and planning out my next move. Looks like it’s time to pull off the dash.

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Just tighten to your liking - I tightened them until they just started to compress a little, Looks like they might be a bit tight the way you have them now but again they are likely fine. I also used a little blue thread lock to make sure they do not wiggle out.

Ok… thanks Mike. I’d be surprised if I have even 10 ft-lbs on there. I ended up using red… that’s what looked like was on the factory bolts when I pulled them. I’ll hand tighten and make sure they’re all the same pressure.

In with the motor and Dave’s harnesses. I should probably order up one of those Bluetooth controller monitors while I’m at it

Popped off the dash and worked on getting the harness installed. Disconnected the accelerator plug.

popped it through the firewall

Ran it towards the controller and connected the female end of the harness.

Male end back through the firewall under the dash and to the accelerator peddle.


  • What do I do with the F-N-R switches? How do I hook these up?

The modified version of the battery cables for the motor. Chains and big screws. Hoping to drop in the motor and wire it all up this weekend in the front end. then it’s just a matter of installing the master disconnect and figuring out how I want to secure the battery.

I’ll tell you, the nice thing about working on this vs the legacy GEMs (which is pretty much all I’ve played with), there’s not a huge mess everytime time I open something. My old 2000, I went to replace the rear shocks, part of the rear end fell off with failed welds… and the list goes on…

I just invited you to another thread where you can see some the FR switch connection