Karabag Looking to Convert 20,000 Iconic VW Beetles to Electric in 2014
A German firm by the name of Karabag hopes to bring new life to some 20,000 iconic Volkswagen Beetles by electrifying them for the modern day.
The classic VW Beetle survived in its mostly original form until 2003 when production ended in Mexico.
Now, Karabag wants to take those late production Beetles and convert them over by removing the air-cooled four-cylinder engine and putting in its place a 23 kW electric motor that churns out 109 pound-feet of torque.
Range is claimed to be approximately 74 miles and top speed is listed at 71 mph.
While we’re certainly in favor of more electric vehicles on the road, this Karabag conversion doesn’t seem like something we’d buy.
First, its power output is too low to be at all zippy.
Second, even the late model Beetles from the 2000s lack most of the amenities of modern autos.
Third, it’s way too expensive. The conversion alone costs $15,000 and Karabag charges $133 per month to rent the battery pack. None of those charges include the cost of the donor vehicle.
Regardless of all this, Karabag hopes to convert some 20,000 Beetles over to electric in 2014. That figure is way too optimistic, especially since this Karabag conversion won’t be available in the US.