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This Is What We Should Be Doing With The Old Cars

Illustration for article titled This Is What We Should Be Doing With The Old Cars
Photo: Renault

“I like old cars,” you say to yourself, “you know, the classic ones. But how can ensure they will be around for the future?” Friend, you need some more electrification in your life.

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That’s what Renault did recently with a car based on the 4L Plein Air, with lovely results. They call it the E-Plein Air. And I don’t even care that Renault doesn’t have plans to put this car into production, since the idea behind it so good.

Our editor-in-chief once drove an electrified old Mini, declaring in the end that it was “the perfect city car.” If you want the old things to have a chance in the future, we must impart them with some of that future.

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Illustration for article titled This Is What We Should Be Doing With The Old Cars

Anyway, back to the E-Plein Air, the electric drivetrain on which comes from the Twizy, and gets 62 miles of range. Some parts on the E-Plein Air are original, like the steering wheel, other parts were made new. It doesn’t look terribly safe, but we’re going for looks here. Let’s keep our eyes on the prize.

Illustration for article titled This Is What We Should Be Doing With The Old Cars

Companies might never do this at scale, since the market for electrified old cars is pretty tiny, as is the market for electrified cars that look like old cars. But one can dream. In the meantime, we can gaze at the E-Plein Air.

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Illustration for article titled This Is What We Should Be Doing With The Old Cars

News Editor at Jalopnik. 2008 Honda Fit Sport.

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DISCUSSION

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Old-Busted-Hotness

Counterpoint: This is NOT what we should do with the old cars.

Driving an old car isn’t just about how it looks. It’s how it feels, sounds, smells. Take away the noisy, vibrating stinkpot under the hood, and you’ve murdered its soul. Because now you’re driving a golf cart with a body swap.

Same thing goes for restomods. Yeah, your ‘69 Camaro with an LS, 6 speed, leather, 335s and a touch screen is fast, but it’s not a ‘69 Camaro anymore.

Old cars are meant to be janky, smelly and dangerous. That way you appreciate new cars.