1998 S-10E Electric Truck
EV1 System 110 Inverter/Drive train
New to us c2008.02 (Pictures below)
Source information mostly from Wikipedia
The Chevrolet S-10 Electric was introduced in 1997 by General Motors, updated
in 1998, and then discontinued. It was an OEM BEV variant of Chevrolet's S-10
pickup truck which ran solely upon electricity, and was marketed primarily to
utility fleet customers.
General Motors started with a regular cab, short-box (6' bed) S-10 pickup, with a
base level trim package, added a half tonneau cover. In place of a typical inline
four cylinder or V-6 engine, the Electric S-10 EV was equipped with an 85 kW
(114 horsepower) three-phase, liquid cooled AC induction motor, based on GM's
EV1 electric coupe. The EV1 had a 100 kW motor, GM reduced the S-10EV's
motor because of the additional weight and drag of the truck so as not to over
stress the batteries.
Other than the reduced motor size, the majority of power electronics were carried
over directly from the EV1, which mandated that the Electric S-10 use a front-
wheel-drive configuration, unlike the rear-wheel-drive setup found in stock S-10's
Similar to the Gen 1 EV1's setup, the 1997 Electric S10 stored and sourced its
power from a lead acid battery pack. Manufactured by Delco Electronics, the
1400 lb (635 kg) pack consisted of 27 batteries, with one being designated as an
"auxiliary" cell. These reportedly offered 16.2 kilowatt-hours for propulsion, and
offered a varying driving range. In 1998, Ovonic NiMH batteries were also
available. These batteries were lighter at 1043 lb (473 kg) and had 29 kilowatt-
hours of storage for a longer range. NiMH also has longer life but cost more than
the lead acid option. The vehicle pictured below has been retrofitted with
Panasonic EV-95 batteries of the variety that the Toyota Rav4-EV uses. The
battery pack was located between the frame rails, beneath the pickup bed.
The S-10 EV charges using the Magne Charger, produced by the General Motors
subsidiary Delco Electronics. The inductive charging paddle is the model J1773
or the 'large' paddle commonly referred to as LPI for Large Paddle Inductive. The
small paddle can also be used with an adapter to properly seat it. The standard
charger is a 220 V 30 A (6.6 kW), there is also a 110 V 15 A 'convenience'
charger, and a high power fast charge version.
The vehicle's charging port is accessed by flipping the front license plate frame
downwards. The system is designed to be safe even when used in the rain.
Depending on the load and driving conditions the range can vary greatly.
For the 1997 PbA, a city range of 45.5 miles (73.2 km), a mixed (city/highway)
range of 47 miles (76 km), and a highway range of 60 miles (97 km) if operating
constantly at 45 mph (72 km/h) or less.
GM estimated 0-50 mph times of 13.5 seconds at 50% charge; "even less" when
the truck had a full charge. Like the EV1, the top speed of the truck was
governed, albeit to 70 mph (113 km/h), 10 mph (16 km/h) less than its coupe
The performance is much better for the 1998 NiMH, at ~90 miles range and a 0-
50 mph of 10.9 seconds at 50% charge.
• 1998 GM S10 EV lead: 45 kW•h/100 mi city, 41 kW•h/100 mi highway
• 1998 GM S10 EV NiMh: 94 kW•h/100 mi city, 86 kW•h/100 mi highway
(Source: Model Year 1999 EPA Fuel Economy Guide)
While the internal combustion S-10 moved to a redesigned front fascia in 1998,
the S-10 Electric kept the same front fascia as the '94-'97. Aside from this header
panel, and a stylized 'Electric' decal on the bottom of the doors, there is very little
difference externally between the appearance of an Electric and a stock S-10.
Any changes, however minute, were reported to have had a positive influence on
reducing the truck's aerodynamic resistance. These changes included a closed
grille and a front air skirt, belly pans beneath the front suspension, a seal
between the cab and the pickup bed, and a half-length tonneau cover over the
rear of the pickup bed.
Internally, the instrument cluster was exclusive to the Electric S-10, and featured
only four gauges - a speedometer, a large "charge" gauge which reads from 'E' to
'F' like a gas gauge, a voltmeter ranging from 220 to 440 volts, and a "power use"
meter, which acts as an ammeter of sorts showing discharge during acceleration
and charge during regenerative braking. The LCD display for the shifter was
shortened to display only park, neutral, reverse, and drive, due to the absent
Despite the truck being based on a "base" trim package, the Electric S-10 still
came standard with dual airbags, a heat-pump for both air conditioning and
heating, power four-wheel ABS brakes, regenerative braking, power steering,
AM/FM radio, and daytime running lamps, among other items. For colder
climates, a fuel-fired heater was standard, it runs on diesel fuel from small 1.7
gallon (6.4 L) tank at temperatures below 37 degrees Fahrenheit (3 °C).
Because battery performance varies greatly with temperature, the heat-pump
supplies cooling to the batteries during charging when necessary. Passive air
recirculation is used during the driving cycle to equalize variations in battery
temperature. The heat-pump can be activated during the driving cycle under
extreme battery over temperature conditions >150F, typically as a result of
extreme battery discharge.
Unlike the EV1, of the 492 S-10EVs assembled about 60 were sold to fleet
customers, rather than just leased through restrictive programs, mostly due to the
prior Department of Transportation crash-worthiness evaluations done on stock S-
10 pickups. As a result, a few Electric S-10's can still be found in use today. The
fleet life of many of these are ending in 2007 and 2008 and they can be acquired
in government and business auctions. Those 440-some that were not sold were
collected, dismembered and crushed just like their EV1 siblings.