Ever heard of an electric Willys Jeep? Here is one
When we talk about good old Jeeps, Willys is probably the first name that comes into our minds. Of course for its iconic design, sheer off-roading capabilities and the rich history-legacy entwined with the badge. The iconic off-roader has a rich connection with the military and it was instrumental in mobilizing the armed forces during World War II and the Korean War among other global conflicts.
While the Jeep Willys is no more in production, its charm is still there among automobile enthusiasts. The platform on which, the Jeep Willys is built, is a simple body-on-frame architecture with leaf springs and solid axles. Considering that someone might think if it will be a good choice to be converted into an EV? The answer is yes, it can, and here is an example as well.
A New York-based custom automotive tuning and engineering company called AI Design has taken this opportunity and transformed the humble little Jeep into an electric vehicle, without compromising the off-roading capabilities of the vehicle.
The owner of this particular Jeep Willys inherited the stainless-steel bodied vehicle from his grandfather who stored it in his garage. The Jeep was sent to the AI design for a complete restoration and EV conversion as well.
The Jeep Willys EV got Tesla battery cells positioned in a custom water-tight battery enclosure and unique packaging under the hood of the car. The Tesla battery cells are known for their quality and available on the salvage market due to the widespread use for years.
While the powertrain character of the Jeep Willys has been transformed
The combination of one of the most basic vehicles ever built with a modern powertrain is a very interesting juxtaposition. Does modern tech take away from the character of Willys Jeep? Based on the driving video absolutely not as you still get the same open-air high steering input driving experience with a better powertrain which in my book is a win-win.