Electric powertrains jolt new life into old Bugs, and vans and Porsche 356 may be next in line for the transplants
Volkswagen Group Components and electrification specialist eClassics are introducing a “near-production version” of an electric-powered vintage Beetle at the IAA Frankfurt Motor Show, which opened Thursday and runs through September 22.
“The concept allows for the electrification of many different historic vehicles,” VW Group Components said in its announcement, which called it “a holistic concept” for the electrification of vintage VWs Beetles.
VW Group Components provides a complete and new electric drive system from the new VW e-up!1 vehicle and eClassics does the conversion.
The e-up!1 is an electric-powered microcar that seats three up front and one behind and that is designed for an urban environment.
“The electrified Beetle combines the charm of our classic car with the mobility of the future,” said Thomas Schmall, member of the board of management of VW Group Components.
“Innovative e-components from Volkswagen Group Components are under the bonnet – we work with them to electrify historically important vehicles, in what is an emotional process.
“We are also providing Beetle owners with a professional conversion solution, using production parts of the highest quality.”
The conversion equips the cars with a 60 kW/82 horsepower system, as well as reinforcing the chassis and upgrading the brakes. Even with the extra weight, the cars can accelerate to 50 km/h (31 mph) in less than 4 seconds and to 80 (50 mph) in just over 8, VW said. The car has a top speed of 150 km/h (93 mph) and a range of 200 km (125 miles), “a comfortable distance for a relaxing day out in an electrified classic car.”
A fast-charging system can provide enough power for more than 150 km in about an hour, VW added.
“Based on this concept, the subsequent electrification of other historic vehicles will also be possible.
“We are already working together to prepare the platform for the Bus,” said Schmall. “An e-Porsche 356 could also be pursued in the future.”
The vehicles are not yet available for sale and pricing is yet to be announced.
The use of the modular electric drive matrix (MEB) is also being considered. This creates additional opportunities regarding performance and range.3 comments