More Electric-Swapped Classics on their Way, Trademarks Suggest

Update July 23, 2020: Another name, e-Safari, has been uncovered. The Safari was one of the names given to the Type 181 or “Thing” as it came to be known in the US. This was the civilian version of the Kübelwagen.

VW Vortex uncovered trademark applications today that suggest that VW will introduce more air-cooled classics whose engines have been swapped for motors.

The trademarks for e-Karmann, e-Kübel, e-Golf Classic, and e-Beetle all suggest that Volkswagen and eClassics are working on another round of electric classics.

The cars will likely follow the path set by the e-Bulli and the e-Käfer, though why VW would need both an e-Käfer and an e-Beetle remains a mystery. That said, the e-Kafer was based on a convertible Beetle, which could allow space for an EV version of the hardtop.

The e-Käfer uses the electric motor and single-speed gearbox from the e-up! which makes about 80 hp—which is more than the air-cooled boxer engine in its era. The conversion does add a little weight. The e-Käfer tips the scales at more than 2,800 lbs, but it can still hit 50 mph in 8 seconds, which is… adequate.

It also has a range of about 120 miles, more than enough to make it to the nearest classic car show and back.

“The electrified Beetle combines the charm of our classic car with the mobility of the future,” said Thomas Schmall, head of VW Group components in September of 2019. “Innovative e-components from Volkswagen Group Components are under the bonnet – we work with them to electrify historically important vehicles, in what is an emotional process.”

At the time, VW promised that more models would become available through the service, which is being operated by eClassics GmbH. The company is based in Renningen, near Stuttgart, and when the e-Käfer came out, the company hinted at an e-356 Porsche. You’ll forgive us if we’re a little more excited about the idea of a (potentially) Mk1 Golf with an electric powertrain. We wouldn’t say no to power levels a little closer to the GTI’s levels.