I'm afraid it's not cheaper, at least from what I found. Any aftermarket AC motor and controller costs thousands, and then you need to buy everything else (which probably involves a few grand to adapt the motor to the transmission). Then you have a transmission designed for half to a quarter of the torque that most EV motors put out, along with the weight, complexity, and leaks.
The cheapest way (at least in the US where they're reasonably cheap and common) remains to buy a slightly-wrecked Leaf and use as much as you can. The cheapest way into batteries for any EV that can go on a highway remains buying a salvaged factory EV (Leaf, Tesla, Highlander, MiEV, Smart). Around here you're looking at $5-10k for a complete five-year-old Leaf, depending on condition.
Some good news for anyone (who isn't me) is that in 2-3 years, this will all be significantly cheaper. Once someone hacks and open-sources software/hardware that can control these high-end OEM components, the cost for completion will drop by an order of magnitude (an aftermarket BMS is like $1500. A Leaf BMS is like $150...but you can't use it due to Nissan's secret CAN bus protocol).
The highest expense is skilled labor, then aftermarket components (charger, BMS, DC-DC), then batteries, then motor/controller, then "bits" (display, HV wiring, contactors, cooling stuff, throttle, HVAC)...Once Allspeed et al starts selling EV conversion subframes, that gets rid of a ton of skilled labor costs and uncertainty.
Edited by Tremelune, 23 June 2020 - 08:29 PM.