For the third year in a row, Chevrolet has assembled an electrically converted classic car to showcase what will be possible with the upcoming eCrate Connect and Cruise system. This year’s project was a 1957 Chevy run in conjunction with Cagnazzi Racing and Hot Rod magazine, and the specs are interesting.
Besides what’s under the hood, this car has an interesting history. The bright yellow car is called “Project X” and was bought by Hot Rod way back in 1965 with the idea of using it to try out a variety of evolving power technologies. Before this electric conversion, it was powered by a supercharged Chevy LS V8.
Now Project X has a single electric motor under the hood that delivers 340 horsepower and 330 pound-feet of torque. It certainly isn’t the Chevy Bolt EV engine previously featured in the Chevy K5 Blazer built last year. In fact, the horsepower and torque are almost identical to the Cadillac Lyriq. Chevy has not confirmed it, but we suspect it is in fact the Cadillac engine. The engine is also connected to a single-speed transmission, rather than the traditional automatic transmissions used in the E-10 and Blazer versions. At the rear is a quick-change differential so it can be easily switched from a fast-accelerating short-ratio to a more reach-friendly long-ratio.
Supplying power is a 30 kWh, 400 volt modular battery pack. That’s half of what was used in the K5 Blazer. According to a representative, this was a conscious choice based on the size and use case for the car. The amount of battery should be good for cruising or the odd trip to the drag strip. Due to its size, it also fits in the trunk of the car. By contrast, the 60 kWh package in the Blazer actually took up the entire length of that truck’s much larger cargo space.
As for the availability of these parts as part of an eCrate Connect and Cruise kit, they are currently under evaluation. The battery in particular is highlighted because being modular it would be relatively easy to add extra capacity for different vehicle types and usage situations. The higher horsepower motor is also in the air, but it would be nice to have the option for more than the 200 horsepower and 266 pound-feet of torque of the Bolt motor.
Update (11/01/21 11:18 am): Added information about transmission and differential.