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HomePick of the DayPick of the Day: This 1969 Saab Sonnet is electric powered

Pick of the Day: This 1969 Saab Sonnet is electric powered

Imported sports car has been converted into an interesting EV

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As if the Saab Sonett wasn’t a rare enough vehicle, the Pick of the Day is a 1969 Saab Sonett (click on the link to see the ad) that has been converted to electric power.

“And now for something completely different!” notes the Massachusetts dealership advertising the car for sale on ClassicCars.com. “This is a stunning example of a 1969 Saab Sonett V4 that has been converted to an electric vehicle. Expertly upgraded by its current owner (Kriss Motors), this car is truly unique (well, there is one other) and offers a smooth quiet ride wherever it goes. Overall this car is exceptional and is ready for a new home.”

Instead of the 73-horsepower gasoline-fueled V4 at the Swedish automaker installed in its little sports cars in the late ‘60s, this example “uses LiFePO4 battery chemistry that slightly differs from Tesla lithium technology,” the dealer reports. 

“These batteries do not suffer from a heat runaway effect and thus do not require a sophisticated battery management system. On the other hand, these large prismatic cells — they resemble old fashioned phone books — are not as energy dense, and therefore vehicle range is somewhat reduced. Range on a full charge is approximately 60 miles.”

Saab, Pick of the Day: This 1969 Saab Sonnet is electric powered, ClassicCars.com Journal
Saab, Pick of the Day: This 1969 Saab Sonnet is electric powered, ClassicCars.com Journal

The dealer adds that the electric motor is configured for regenerative braking and, running “at a relatively low voltage — around 125v” can be “easily recharged” on a typical 120-volt home outlet. 

The dealer says the car retains its original column-mounted 4-speed transmission, now mated to the electric drivetrain.

“This 1969 Saab Sonett is this owner’s original car which he repurchased by chance when embarking on this adventure,” the dealer adds. 

“The paint is superb and was finished by a well respected professional. The interior is in great condition and the gauges etc have been upgraded to reflect the EV conversion. The odometer reads 716 miles since completion of the restoration/conversion and essentially the car is new and in better condition than it was the day it originally left the factory.”

The color on the car’s fiberglass bodywork is Blue Pearl and it has a black interior. 

Saab, Pick of the Day: This 1969 Saab Sonnet is electric powered, ClassicCars.com Journal
Saab, Pick of the Day: This 1969 Saab Sonnet is electric powered, ClassicCars.com Journal

According to The Standard Catalog of Imported Cars, even Saab was known for changing the engines in its Sonnet sports car. Originally the cars, launched in 1966, were powered by a 3-cylinder, 2-stroke engine rated at 60 horsepower, but in 1968 were switched to the V4 sourced from Ford of Germany. 

Sonnets arrived in the US marketplace with build-in roll bars, 3-point seat belts and high-back bucket seats designed to counter whiplash injuries.

Production of the Sonnet ended in 1974.

This converted-to-electric 1969 Sonnet is being offered for $64,990. To view this listing on ClassicCars.com, see Pick of the Day.

Hagerty
Larry Edsall
Larry Edsall
A former daily newspaper sports editor, Larry Edsall spent a dozen years as an editor at AutoWeek magazine before making the transition to writing for the web and becoming the author of more than 15 automotive books. In addition to being founding editor at ClassicCars.com, Larry has written for The New York Times and The Detroit News and was an adjunct honors professor at the Walter Cronkite School of Journalism and Mass Communication at Arizona State University.

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