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VW Will Now Convert Classic Beetles To Electric Power


Volkswagen is in the midst of reimagining its classic Beetle, and among other things that means giving current owners a chance to get in on the electric revolution. The company is partnering with a German firm called eClassics to retrofit vintage Beetles already on the market so they can run on electric power.

Volkswagen says it can fit a 36.8 kWh battery pack into a vintage Beetle. But VW isn’t just attaching motors and new batteries to current drivetrains, common in electric car conversion. Rather, it’s giving eClassics access to the drivetrain of a new car, the compact all-electric known as the e-up!, exclamation mark included.

The idea is a novel one, but not a VW original. Mechanics have been tinkering with drivetrains for as long as they’ve existed, and cars as common as a 1994 Honda Accord have been turned into plug-in hybrids. More recently, prestige brands have gotten in on the idea, like Aston Martin’s “Heritage EV” program from 2018 and Jaguar’s electric conversion’s process, which uses technology from its I-PACE SUV.

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