British Asia Network - Shahzad Sheikh
London 23 March 2020 - Volkswagen Commercial Vehicles has unveiled this delightful 1966 VW Samba Bus that features an ultra modern electric drive. The e-Bulli features the drive system components from the latest VW electric vehicles but transplants them into the fully restored classic.
The e-Bulli was originally due to premiere at Techno Classica 2020 which has been postponed. And although it's being presented as a concept, you can actually order one of these via a collaboration between VW and eClassics.
This particular Samba was sourced from California and its 44bhp four-cylinder boxer engine has been switched out for an electric motor delivering 83bhp with a maximum torque of 212Nm. Combined with a new 1-speed gearbox, that power unit will give this classic extraordinary performance including a top speed of 130kph - 25kph more than before.
The electric motor and gearbox are mounted in the back driving the rear wheels with the lithium-ion battery stored in the floor. The chassis has been completely redesigned to accomodated the new components and improve the ride, handling and dynamics of the car.
There are multi-link front and rear axles with adjustable shock absorbers and coilover struts, plus a new rack-and-pinion steering system and four internally ventilated disc brakes.
The battery is charged via an AC charger with charging power of 2.3 to 22 kW, depending on electricity source. But it can also be charged at DC fast-charging points with up to 50 kW of charging power. In this case it can be charged up to 80% in 40 minutes. The range with one full battery charge is more than 200km.
It has LED headlights with daytime running lights and at the rear there are also LED charge indicators. They signal to a driver walking up to the e-BULLI how much charge the lithium-ion battery still has even before they reach the vehicle!
Inside the new speedometer is based on the original, while a two-digit display integrated into it provides the driver with a variety of information, including range. Music on board comes from an authentic-looking retro-style radio, which is actually equipped with DAB+, Bluetooth and USB connectivity.
eClassics are offering the conversion with prices starting from 64,900 Euros.
There is a company in the UK that is converting all kinds of classics into electric vehicles? Want to learn more? Let me know and I'll do a special feature!