They’re true style icons, Mercedes models from the ’60s, ’70s and ’80s. The design is timeless, but the engine: hopelessly polluting. But now that’s changing because Belgian/Dutch startup Monceau Automobiles is retrofitting original Mercedes classics with a state-of-the-art electric drive train, for the discerning car lover who doesn’t want to choose between class and climate.
“A clean, classic car, that was once like a protestant pope. Impossible. But that doesn’t mean there’s no demand for it,” says Roel Pollen, lifelong car lover and director of Monceau Automobiles. “Our customers want to drive in an environmentally conscious way, without emissions that harm the environment. On the other hand, they also love the charm and experience of a classic car. But without the maintenance problems that often entails. Monceau Automobiles has stepped into this niche, offering an electric classic car that meets all these requirements and can go from 0 to 100 km/h in less than 7 seconds, and with a range of almost 300 kilometres”.
SLC coupe and SL convertible
The first models offered by Monceau Automobiles are the characteristic SLC 4-seater coupe and the elegant SL convertible from the ’70s and ’80s. The cars will all be restored to their original condition and equipped with low-maintenance electric drive trains. Pollen: “Where necessary, we also improve the driving experience and bring comfort more in line with modern standards, all without losing the classic charm, of course. So you get a car with the unmistakable look and feel of a classic car, but with the new, worry-free and clean technology of a modern electric sports car. What’s more, with a Monceau, you can drive into any city centre or nature preserve, without worrying about the restrictions of environmental zones.”
Quest for a clean classic car
Tom Van de Cruys is the co-founder of Monceau Automobiles, and he’s well known in Belgium as the former CEO of green energy supplier Lampiris. He’s not only concerned about the climate, he’s also a classic Mercedes aficionado. His foray into electric retrofitting stems from a personal quest: “I was looking for an electric car with character and had long been in love with the Mercedes classics. I also wanted a safe car that wouldn’t need much maintenance but could still deliver on performance. Those were the ingredients that initially led to an extraordinary project and then to investing in an extraordinary startup.”
Tom and Roel are joined at Monceau Automobiles by Dr. MSc. Klaas De Craemer. Klaas is responsible for the technical direction, to which he brings his wealth of experience and expertise in electrical systems. Klaas also already has several projects under his belt in converting vehicles to electric drive trains. Monceau Automobiles also has several reliable partners, like German company TeKshift (supplier of engineering services for car manufacturers and Formula E teams) and Dutch company Power Battery (high-quality liquid-cooled batteries).
Delivery from 2021 onwards
Monceau Automobiles is currently developing and building its first eSLC and eSL. In the near future, the company will also offer other Mercedes classics, such as the majestic S-Class coupe and convertible from the 60’s and the Pagoda W113 SL. Both the eSL and the eSLC can be pre-ordered for delivery in 2021 starting of this quarter. You can drive your own completely custom-built electric classic car starting at 159,000 Euro ex. VAT.
— Press release
Main image credits: Monceau Automobiles
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