Electric Car Conversion Glossary

Electric Vehicle Types

Battery Electric Vehicle (BEV)
A vehicle powered by both an internal combustion engine and a battery pack, which can operate in conjunction with or independently of each other.

Plug-in vehicle (PiV)
A vehicle which can be plugged into the main electricity grid for charging.

Electric vehicle (EV)
A vehicle which uses electricity as its power source.

Ultra Low Emission Vehicle (ULEV)
Vehicles with less than 75g/km of CO2 emissions, usually therefore a BEV or PHEV.

Range-extended EV (REx)
A vehicle which runs primarily on a battery pack, but has a back up power source such as a generator, which has the ability to recharge the battery pack. For example, the BMW I3.

Hybrid Car
A car which has a battery pack to compliment its petrol/diesel engine. This battery is charged by the engine, and cannot be plugged into the grid.

Full Hybrid or “Self-Charging” Hybrid
A car which has a battery pack to compliment its petrol/diesel engine. This battery is charged by the engine, and cannot be plugged into the grid.

Mild Hybrid
A car which has a battery pack to compliment its petrol/diesel engine. This battery is charged by the engine, and cannot be plugged into the grid.

Fuel Cell Electric Vehicle (FCEV)
A vehicle with an electric motor which gets power from a Hydrogen Fuel Cell, rather than a battery pack.

Alternative Fuel Vehicle
A car which is powered by anything other than traditional petrol or diesel.


Rear control box
Where we mount the smaller components of an electric vehicle conversion. Components such as contactors, management systems, fuse boxes and DCDC’s.

Short for Battery Management System, which monitors the battery pack in the vehicle, ensuring that temperature, voltage, current and resistance and allows programming of various charging and discharging parameters.

An on-board device which converts AC current from the grid into DC current to charge the battery pack. This is done at a controlled speed depending on the capability of the system, and can be anything from 3kW to hundreds of kilowatts.

The ignition system of an electric vehicle, which allows high voltage current to flow throughout the circuit, after turning the key on for example.

Fuse Box (HV)
A box where all HV current flows before going to each component, to ensure that excessive, damaging current isn’t able to reach sensitive components.

Like horsepower, but measured in Newton-meters, torque is a measure of twisting or turning force, it’s linked to acceleration.

Large copper pieces which connect batteries to each other in a series configuration, instead of using high-voltage cable.

An electric vehicle component which converts high voltage DC voltage into lower voltage DC voltage in order to power the lower voltage systems in the vehicle, such as headlights, stereo systems or windscreen wipers. This works in the same was as an alternator would in an ICE vehicle.

High-voltage Fuse
The fuse on the main high-voltage circuit, which protects the system from overcurrent by breaking the circuit.

The component which converts DC current from the battery pack into AC current which then powers the motor. This component also determines how much current to send to the motor, and therefore its speed (depending on throttle input) and determines which direction to spin the motor (forward or reverse).

Charging Connector Types

Type 1
The standard connector for electric charging stations in North America.

Type 2
The standard connector for electric charging stations in Europe (and the UK).

Combined Charging System (CCS)
The ability to charge an electric vehicle from both an AC power source and from a DC power source. This allows for significantly faster charging than standard AC only systems and is what is found in the likes of Teslas.

UK 3 pin
The standard plug in the UK, which can be used to charge your OEM electric vehicle or electric vehicle conversion by using a Type-2 to 3-pin cable.


Top Up Charging
Topping the charge of a vehicle up after each journey or day, even if the battery isn’t low, rather than allowing it to drop low before recharging.

Home Charging
Charging an electric vehicle at home using either a wall mounted 7kW charger, or a 3 pin plug, rather than charging it at public charging stations such as at motorway services or supermarkets.

En-route Charging
Charging an electric vehicle whilst on a longer journey, for example at a motorway services, usually done using fast DC chargers.

Range per hour (RPH)
Sometimes measured in Miles per Hour, RPH is the amount of range that can be added to a vehicle per hour of charging.

Kilowatt hour (kWh)
An energy storage unit, used for measuring the size of a battery pack, or its energy storage capacity.

Vehicle to Grid (V2G)
The reverse of charging, uses power from a vehicle battery pack and puts it back into the grid to power a home for example.