MIKE SAVINO: Bayport, NY
A family love for EV becomes a family EV business
My revenge began as a teenager when my father, Joe, encouraged by the first “gas crisis” in the early 1970’s, decided to follow through with his desire to build an electric car. Although we didn’t know it at the time, between his electrical and my mechanical knowledge, we formed an EV partnership that lasts to this day.
Back then there weren’t any off-the-shelf parts for conversions, so we had to modify existing components from electric forklifts or create our own partsfor our first conversion of a 1971 Simca. When we started I don’t think we really knew just how it would turn out or if it would even work, but it actually turned out so well that my mom drove this car for many years until an irreplaceable suspension part finally took it out of commission! I remember it being quite the head turner when we drove past pedestrians with just the quiet whine of the electric motor. I guess after this we were pretty much an EV family, buying some factory EV’s like a 1979 Solargen AMC concord wagon and acquiring several other EV’s from auctions and even scrapyards- vehicles like Subaru electric mini vans, Westinghouse utility trucks used by the NYC power company, and Ford Fairmont electrics. But we never enjoyed these as much as our own built conversions so we started on an S-10 pickup conversion in the early 1990’s and then a Ford Aspire in the early 2000’s, and more recently a Mazda Miata.
With the increase in gas prices and the huge demand for an alternative from people all over the country up to and including the President, I decided to offer our knowledge of electric conversions by starting EV-propulsion LLC, a company specializing in electric vehicle parts sales and conversions. It is a great pleasure working with people around the world building electric cars, and seeing the large amount of people ready for change in their transportation’s fuel source and the desire to limit their carbon footprint. I just hope that this time electrics are here to stay, because I haven't seen a similar surge in EV interest like this since the late 1970’s. There were multiple electric car manufacturers, large government funding, even congressional hearings about EV’s, but it all fizzled out in the 1980’s. It might finally be the electric car’s time now.
As a result of owning an electric car over the years, I have met many great people and am truly impressed by the younger generation’s knowledge of alternatives and their desire to rid themselves of fossil fuel use. One of that generation is my daughter, who is still young but is starting to show that same interest that I had when we set upon building our first electric car… I think electric cars will be in the family for a long time!