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HomeCar CultureWould you convert your classic car to an electric vehicle?

Would you convert your classic car to an electric vehicle?

Classic cars going electric

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Gas prices have been high lately. Your classic car may have poor gas mileage (my 1977 C10 gets an estimate 8 mpg), and smog laws can make it difficult for your car to pass emissions testing.

Taking many factors into consideration, would you swap the current drivetrain from your classic car and convert it to an electric vehicle?

Let us know in the comments section below if you would convert your classic into an electric vehicle.

Like my high school history teacher always told me, “There are no wrong answers.”

My take? Yes I would

David P. Castro
David P. Castro is an experienced automotive and motorsports writer with a passion for American muscle cars. He is a credentialed automotive, NASCAR, and IndyCar reporter that graduated from the University of Nevada. The Santa Rosa, California native resides in Phoenix with his wife, son, Siberian Husky, Mini Cooper, and 1977 Chevrolet C10.

47 COMMENTS

  1. Yes I would like to convert one of my automobiles to electric. I would probably pick the 1969 VW beetle I have. It is restored to new condition so it would be a good candidate.

  2. I am considering electrifying my 2000 Miata in about five years.

  3. Yes definitely. IF the cost is reasonable. Might not do the conversion until it’s time (engine needs total rebuild or replacing). I get that some guys enjoy the maintaining, but for those of us who don’t have much free time — just wanna drive em and not have to wrench too much. My ’62 Lincoln Continental might make a good candidate someday. Oh and can we leave politics out of this topic?

  4. It depends on the vehicle really. But, even if I did, I would save all the original components, bits and pieces, and do it in such a way that it could be put back to original. That would also preserve and acknowledge automotive history. It would be a shame if the original engine and tranny were lost.

  5. Well, I have a very nice 74 MGB GT and I’m definitely thinking about converting it, especially because I want to keep driving it as long as I can breathe, and the Car is what I love NOT the Engine!

  6. I would not convert my 1970 Firebird. Had a Leaf and absolutely feared the lack of range, fighting for a charge plug in and waiting for the freaking battery to charge. Then the battery failed and it was too expensive to replace.
    No thanks. I will have a still and make moonshine for my Bird before I ever think of going electric.

  7. I wouldn’t consider converting either of the 2 vehicles in my driveway to electric….because last Friday I put down a deposit on the electric VW minibus coming out in 2023. I’ll be the first in my area.

  8. No but I would consider doing a hybrid or hydrogen. EVs just move where the fuel originated, hides the waste and creates new toxic waste once the battery wears out.

    When power plants are no longer natural gas, diesel, or coal and when nuclear, thermo, hydro, and wind/solar can start keeping up with existing technologies then I’ll consider electric. When the transmission grid stops wasting 8-12 percent of the power in wastage and when I can drive an EV from San Diego to Las Vegas without stopping several hours to recharge then I’ll consider EV.

    • Please keep in mind, some folks charge their car using solar on their own roofs.
      My tesla has a 316+ mile range, and in the four years I’ve owned it, I’ve only had to use a supercharger 20ish times.
      Most of the time, I plug it in at home and I have never had to waste any time going to a gas station to charge it.
      Driving 300 miles in our model three cost less than 10% of driving our full-size pick up the same distance.

  9. EV or not EV ! That is the question !
    Being a Mechanic/Electrician not a Playwright I will convert as soon as it’s affordable !
    My labour cost would be minimal but the high cost of all the electrical components required is still far too high !
    Would miss the feel and sound of the V8 though !
    (64 Mustang coupe UK)

  10. J’ai une Nissan Leaf électrique qui développe environ 100 CV, et une Mercury Comet 1961 avec le 6 Cyl qui développe elle aussi une centaine de CV.
    Si je pouvais rouler tous les jours avec ma Comet grâce à un moteur électrique pourquoi pas ? si un mécanicien se sent capable de transformer ces 2 véhicules en un seul je suis prêt à le faire !!!!
    J’habite en France

  11. Well, at 70 yrs old crawling under my 1949 Dodge B1B is getting to be a bit much. And if the costs align yes I would consider it.

  12. I have a 68 Camaro. What would be the point of converting it? You wouldn’t be able to hear it, smell it or feel it. Why bother driving it then?

  13. If it’s affordable and a clean build, I would definitely consider an EV conversion for my ’56 Chevy 210 hardtop. It’s been decades since this car has seen its original engine and drivetrain and the 350 in it now is pretty prosaic. I also own 2017 Bolt EV and it out-performs my hot rod in every way except for the smells and sound. I wouldn’t mind having that EV torque in my ’56! Range is not an issue. It’s a cruiser and I’m not going to take it on a cross-country road trip.

  14. No thank you. I would opt first to replace my engine with another era consistent spec engine with better mpg. Or, convert to a hybrid. EV not 4ME.

  15. I agree with Pete Norton from the UK. It’s all about affordability. I have a 69 Blazer and can throw multiple 350’s or LS engines in it at a far less cost than conversion.

  16. No thanks. The whole child labor digging cobalt for my 1/2 ton car battery thing kinda turns me off. If needed, perhaps a more modern gas engine.

  17. No , there’s not enough cobalt or lithium on the planet to replace all the internal combustion vehicles needed for humanity and never will.

  18. I’m with the MGB crowd, I would update the car engine to electric (keep everything else…that still works….original). It would be very nice to have about 125bhp, I believe the engineers built it strong enough to handle that stress.

  19. David, the question sounds like one of an uninformed troll or fantasyland. After looking into doing this it’s impractical, unfeasible, or if it can be done it’ll cost $30-90K to do plus a car and 3year wait. If you are retired and a multi-millionaire one could teach their-self todo it in about a year if they worked full time on it.

  20. I would convert my 1970 Ford F-250 Ranger XLT truck camper special standard cab. The pickup would be converted to electric. if I could obtain a big enough electric motors to have the truck haul a 3,919 lb truck camper in the 8 ft pickup bed. The truckwould be converted from single wheel to dual wheel.

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