What happens when you tow a Gem with a strap behind your car?

Had to tow my gem back home, left it in neutral the entire way while turned on.

Unfortunately the motor smells like burnt plastic now.

Still runs

Thoughts on the damage I just caused? Thanks all.

Thoughts… uh, yeah, what do you think happened?

Yes, that.

On no…
Edit: I just reread the original post and see that the key was left on. This changes a few things. Notes below…

How fast did you get?
Is it rolling back and forth without resistance and/or noise?

A Q for whoever was steering the towed Gem: Did it make any distressing sounds like bolts in a blender noises coming from the front end of the car?

Now that the car is home, Charge and try driving it.
Does it work?
Does it show any codes on the display?

Pics please as you disassemble. This needs to be documented.

BTW- There isn’t really a neutral. The gearbox is always physically connected to the motor.
Most likely if you drove above 40 for any length of time you may have over spun the motor. 50 might have made it fly apart internally.

What year is this car?
Why was it being towed home?

If there was any pedal press applied, the contactor would be closed and field V energized, the Armature would generate it’s own power and you would be in a constant state of regen.

Some cars may be programmed with this- some not.
If key was ON and field was energized the car might have been in a state of anti-roll where any motion generated power would be shunted to the controller as an attempt to stop the car. This is not a good scenario for the motor and controller.

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Quite the rookie move on my part… I know.

And no, only went around 10-15 mph.

Likely burnt out motor but will find out tomorrow if it still drives, etc.

Oh and the key was turned on, yet left in neutral.

Yeah yeah yeah bring on the criticism, I can take it…

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I think the best scenario would be a little pedal press or power off when being towed home.

Rookie mistake or not. We should all have this in our plan to get home.

You might be good. A little smell maybe just some brush dust cooking. Did you feel your motor for temp?

Hot as sh*t, but did not hear any clanking. I am going to test the Ohm’s tomorrow with a meter and see if it is fried.

For future tow situations when the battery is dead, I ordered a Cen-Tech 900 Peak Amp Jump Start. I’ll connect these to the initial battery (I don’t know the correct terminology for the first receiving battery) terminals to drive home.

I will keep the group updated!!

Just checked the temp of the motor hours after it’s been sitting outside. Still warm and the kill switch is on.

Ummm… no. this is not a good idea. Don’t even try it. If by chance you did get your car back functional it would do damage to your other batteries by running them lower than they already are.

A better plan would be to not let them get this low and you not get stuck.

Plan B would be to carry a cord and bumming some charge time from your closest grid source.

Plan C would be to tow your car home with key off.

What year is your GEM?

If you burnt the motor out, I have a rebuilt 3.5hp that would go cheap. I replaced it with a 7.5 for the hills we have.

This one is a 2002 E825.

Thank you! I will keep this in mind.

Fortunately it doesn’t seem like the motor burned out. It still runs just the same since… but who knows.