Converting old vehicles into electric cars is not a new idea - but until now such a conversion was an individual and time-consuming affair. Not to mention the costs. Depending on the vehicle, however, it can be very sensible and, above all, environmentally friendly to remove the old engine and install an electric drive. Solid used cars are given a second life and the resources used for the virtually new electric car are significantly lower than when building a completely new car.
There are already projects that have set themselves the task of doing exactly that - such as Mini Recharged, a program from BMW that wants to give old city cars a new chance (you can find out more here). However, these are usually individual interventions, the costs and duration of which vary. What was missing so far was some kind of standardized process that would make the conversion easier to plan and more efficient. Until now.
The young company e-R3volt from Dachau has set itself the task of “converting cars into digital, upgradeable electric vehicles within a day”. Even if the start-up is obviously still in its early stages.
Theoretically, the conversion works like this: After an initial assessment to determine whether the vehicle to be converted is suitable for the conversion, the actual work begins. First, the old engine and all components that are no longer needed for future operation must be removed. Through careful expansion, e-R3volt intends to continue using or correctly recycling.
A kind of frame is then installed in the cleared engine compartment, which contains the battery, electric motor and all the necessary components. The frame is attached where the combustion engine was previously attached.
The current battery allows e-R3volt converted vehicles to have an estimated range of 250 to 300 kilometers on a single charge, but development continues to improve this performance. What the electric motor does is not clear from the information available about the project so far.
The frame has a modular structure so that individual components can be replaced or expanded at a later date. To control and control the new engine, the converted vehicles then receive a new infotainment system that provides access to the car's functions. Through the digital upgrade, e-R3volt also wants to enable access to innovative apps and special navigation solutions for electric cars.
Those interested do not have to go to Dachau for the conversion - the plan is to work with partner workshops near the customers. Online sales of the conversion kits are not offered; customers currently have to contact e-R3volt using the contact form. Customers currently find out very little about delivery times and partner workshops on the company's homepage unless they proactively ask.
If you decide to convert, the work should be completed after just one working day, according to the company. In an interview with "Euronews", Rolf Behling, head of vehicle development, revealed that the costs for the conversion are between 12,000 and 15,000 euros. e-R3volt is currently talking about ready-made conversion kits for 42 different models, including common vehicles such as the Volkswagen Golf and Polo, Audi A3 and Seat Leon.