General Motors teased the "future of hot rodding" this week with a stunning, if not necessary new idea: the automaker took a vintage 1962 Chevrolet C-10 pickup and turned it into an electric vehicle using technology from the Chevy Bolt.
The French truck, called "E-10", is not the only one-off peculiarity that came from this year's SEMA (Specialty Equipment Market Association) trade show, as Ford also announced a six-speed electric Mustang prototype.
But what GM showed is a much more tangible idea, because the electric powertrain that the company traded in the truck is considering bringing something to the market that would make comparable conversions possible. It could also make EV conversions a bit more accessible – at the moment, these adjustments still require a lot of money from a specialty store.
GM says the truck conversion builds on what the car manufacturer showed at last year's SEMA show, a modern Camaro that had been converted to electrical power using a few standard components. The truck draws its electrical power from two 400-volt, 60kWh Bolt EV battery packs mounted in the bed, married to Bolt power electronics that direct the power to two electrical crate motors developed by Chevy & # 39; s performance department. In general, GM estimates that the truck has around 450 horsepower and can reach 0 to 60 miles per hour in five seconds.
By working with more production components than last year's electric Camaro prototype, GM claims that the E-10, with its electric crate motor setup, could soon be an option for people who want vintage cars in a cleaner (but still always want to breathe new life into powerful) fashion.
"The E-10 Concept builds on the experience and momentum generated by last year's (Camaro) Concept, where the idea of a & # 39; crate & # 39; electric propulsion system was further developed by using actual production components, "said Russ O & Blenes of Chevrolet Performance in a ruling. "It's all still in the testing phase, but this concept brings the electrical option for hot rodders much closer to reality."
Electric conversions have become popular enough in recent years that GM is far from being the first automaker to signal interest in the market. In September, Volkswagen announced that it had developed a way to convert old beetles into electrical power. Jaguar and Aston Martin have also announced similar efforts. It is a trend that is likely to continue, as governments around the world continue to tighten emission standards. (Of course GM has recently supported the Trump government's efforts to delay the implementation of more stringent emission regulations in the US. Perhaps the E-10 may be a sign that the automaker believes there is money to be made heedless of what the regulations in the US will look like in a few years.)