READING: Aston Martin Electrifies Its Classic Cars
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THERE’S NO DENYING that modern cars are fast, reliable, and handle well around sharp bends. With innovation being what it is, they constantly get better in just about every way, yet the classic car is still thriving, with values at an all-time high. The cause: A combination of factors. Perhaps most pertinent of these is that the classic car has got mad style.

Created in an analogue world of pencil and paper, it comes with the sort of elegance that’s sorely missing from its modern equivalent.

It does come with baggage. For one, it’s grossly detrimental to the environment. Good news here: Aston Martin has managed to work around this.

The World’s First Reversible EV Powertrain

In creating the Rapide E, the brand’s first all-electric production car, Aston Martin devised a healthy alternative to its internal combustion engine. To future-proof the firm against any potential emissions restrictions that might hinder the use of classic cars in the future, it went on to create the world’s first reversible EV powertrain conversion.

Aston Martin’s reversible electric powertrain means that the 1970 DB6 MkII Volante has a longer lease of life in a future without conventional fuels.

We have been looking for some time to find a way of protecting our customers’ long-term enjoyment of their cars.

Paul Spires
The reversible EV powertrain protects classic cars from any potential future emissions restrictions.

Aston Martin does everything to keep the integrity of the cars intact. That includes the manual gearbox and the good ol’ radio.

Led by Aston Martin Works, the idea is to create a future where classic cars can thrive on a post-petroleum planet. 

“We have been looking for some time to find a way of protecting our customers’ long-term enjoyment of their cars,” says Paul Spires, President of Aston Martin Works. “Driving a classic Aston Martin on pure EV power is a unique experience that will no doubt be extremely attractive to many owners.”

Compatible with the Best Heritage Models

The zero-emission powertrain will be compatible with the firm’s heritage models, namely the six-cylinder engines. That will include the DB4, DB5, DB6 and DBS. The first to take the leap forward is an original 1970 DB6 MkII Volante. The elegant roadster embodies the class and style that Aston Martin is famous for.

The reversible EV powertrain, referred to as an “EV cassette”, is a self-contained lithium-ion battery pack. It feeds the car’s electric motor via wires, just like in a modern-day electric car. There’s a screen integrated to the interior, which allows the driver to keep track of power management in real time.

The powertrain sits comfortably on the original engine and gearbox — no fussy welding or cutting is involved. As for how the electric conversion affects performance and handling, we don’t know yet. Word has it that it should match the original car’s top speed.

Turning the motors electric might be a gutsy move, given how purity and provenance are vital to classic car collectors. That aside, Aston Martin has done everything to keep the integrity of the cars intact. Your motor will be fast enough to keep up with traffic, but not fast enough to get you into trouble. And in a case the driver misses the rumble of the combustion engine, the original powertrain can easily be reinstated.

Aston Martin’s Heritage EV conversions are expected to commence this year. Click here for more information.

The zero-emission powertrain will be compatible with six-cylinder models. That includes the DB4, DB5, DB6 and DBS.


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