Talk about iconic figures going electric. Even General Motors will release an all-new 1,000hp Hummer EV this fall, while Ford will unveil its F150 electric later this year. Furthermore, Cadillac will launch its completely electric Lyriq SUV in 2022, and Jeep will add the Wrangler Magneto EV to its range in 2022.
But re-engineering and reinterpreting a classic sports car to house an electric powertrain is a brave if not bold move. In 2018, Prince Harry drove his new bride Meghan Markle away from Windsor Castle in a customized completely electric Jaguar E-Type Concept Zero.
A substantial reimagining of Britain's AC Cobra, another classic sports car from the same era as the E-Type, is now available. This time, it's AC Cars' hottest version yet. The Series 4 is based on the wider-bodied Cobra 'Superblower' and features a powerful 617hp/738lb-ft electric motor from Derby-based Falcon Electric. The earlier Series 1, which surface in July 2020, had a meeker 304hp e-motor and a 54kWh battery capable of jumping from 0-62 mph in 6.7 seconds and achieving a range of 150 miles. The new Series 4 is a cute above.
It may pack the same 54kWh battery but now AC claims a range of 200 miles and 0-62 times of 3.8 seconds for the lightweight 2734 lb Series 4. And whereas the Series 1 sold for around $190, 000, the new more powerful limited edition Series 4 will pack a sticker price hovering around £168,000 or $232,000.
The AC Cobra electric is designed in the spirit of the original 1962 Cobra but has been altered and reused for an electric powertrain. The ladder frame has been modified to accommodate the new motor components, and the triangulated chassis is made of high-quality composite. The new lithium-ion battery, motors, inverters, and power control units associated with the new electric powertrain, according to AC Cars, weigh no more than the traditional V8 engine and transmission. The brakes and steering have also been retuned to meet the needs of an electric vehicle with a lower center of gravity.
The AC Cobra's tale is legendary, with a recognizable silhouette and a reputation for a tremendous performance. The AC Cobra, along with the svelte AC Ace, altered sports cars forever in 1962 by incorporating Ford's small-block V8 into the two-seater and creating an automotive masterpiece.
The shift from gasoline engines to electric motors almost 60 years on will be just as significant as the original model, allowing the famous British name to sell, highly desirable high-performance cars that are adept at the needs of future buyers.
The car is powered by two engines: a 308 hp unit with 369 lb-ft of torque and a 617 hp one with 738 lb-ft of torque in the flagship variant. The sprint times from 0 to 62 mph are 4.9 and 3.8 seconds, respectively.
AC Cars also offers gasoline power—an improved version of the Cobra Superblower with a gutsier supercharged 6.2-liter V8 delivering 650hp and 649 lb-ft of torque and a screaming soundtrack—for those who miss the noise, vibration, and feel of a V8. So, which one are you? Are you the howling kind or the silent type?