Aston Martin Reversible “Cassette” powertrain…
I have both used and invented more 4-letter words waiting for tow trucks than seems humanly possible, especially in vintage tin…
But now Aston Martin has come up with a radical idea that mitigates possible future restriction on classic car usage (and those F-@#!!! breakdowns) with the world’s first reversible EV powertrain conversion. Talk about having your cake and eating it, too.
Lately, there has been the move to electrify vintage cars, but Aston Martin is approaching something a bit more special with its reversible powertrain cassette, allowing the manufacturer to future-proof these increasingly precious machines.
Conceived as an integral part of the company’s wider EV strategy, the Heritage electrification concept has been led by Aston Martin Works at Newport Pagnell, and developed around a so-called “cassette” EV powertrain. The objective is to mitigate any future legislation to restrict the use of classic cars by offering a zero emissions conversion, while jumping into the rather lucrative field of electrification.
Using knowledge acquired by Aston Martin during the final phase development of the Rapide E and future planning of the all-new range of Lagondas, the Aston Martin Works’ Heritage EV conversion employs state-of-the-art thinking and technology.
Up first to receive the radical new EV powertrain is an original 1970 DB6 MkII Volante, worth very serious money. Sitting on the original engine and gearbox mountings, the cassette is enclosed within its own self-contained cell. Umbilical cords from the power unit then feed the car’s electrical systems. Power management is operated via a dedicated screen, which is discreetly fitted to the car’s interior.
The cassette system offers the perfect solution, offering owners the reassurance of knowing their car is future-proofed and socially responsible, yet still an authentic Aston Martin with the ability to reinstate its original powertrain if, and when, desired.
Andy Palmer, Aston Martin Lagonda President and Group Chief Executive Officer, said of the Heritage EV concept: “We are very aware of the environmental and social pressures that threaten to restrict the use of classic cars in the years to come. Our Second Century Plan not only encompasses our new and future models, but also protects our treasured heritage. I believe this not only makes Aston Martin unique, but a truly forward-thinking leader in this field.”
Paul Spires, President Aston Martin Works commented: “We have been looking for some time to find a way of protecting our customers’ long-term enjoyment of their cars…. pure EV power is a unique experience and one that will no doubt be extremely attractive to many owners, especially those who live in city centres. We also foresee collectors adding another dimension to their collection by commissioning EV-converted heritage cars”.
Heritage EV conversions are expected to commence in 2019.
Tow truck operators may groan, but I’m for one, cheering.