Chevy hot-rods a 1962 pickup with high Boltage
At the 2019 SEMA show, Chevrolet is turning heads with a venerable classic pickup, a 1962 C-10, that’s been turned into a hot rod. While that’s normally the stuff of county fairs and local club shows, this one’s different. It’s electric.
Using components from the Chevrolet Bolt EV, the C-10 produces about 450 horsepower (336 kW). Chevrolet is calling the electrification conversion system the “E-10.” It will be available to modders and upfitters as a crate engine-style offering.
“The Chevrolet E-10 electrified Connect & Cruise concept system reimagines the performance crate engine for hot rodders,” says Jim Campbell, vice president of Performance and Motorsports. “As General Motors continues to work toward our vision of a zero-emissions world, concepts such as this help us get there, while still supporting the enthusiasts who love to drive vintage vehicles.”
The concept includes a twin stack of Chevrolet Performance concept eCrate motors, two 400-volt battery packs, and a conventional SuperMatic 4L75-E automatic transmission. The eCrate motors replace the original gasoline engine under the hood, and connect to the transmission to send torque to the rear axle. The Chevrolet Bolt EV power electronics and Bolt EV battery packs provide the juice, and are mounted in the C-10’s bed under a hard tonneau cover. The batteries each have 60 kWh of usable energy.
The Chevrolet C-10 conversion took about 18 weeks, and was done entirely in-house by Chevrolet. The truck has been tested on track and in quarter-miles, returning 5-second 0-60 mph (96.6 km/h) sprints and 13-second quarter-miles.
Something was missing, though ... engine sounds. Hot rodders expect that, so Chevy complied by engineering simulated V8 sounds from speakers in the back of the vehicle. There are five modes for the emulator: an LS7 Z28 track tuning, an LS7 Z28 touring turning, a straight V8, a futuristic sound, and silent mode. These are driver-selectable, and the engine sounds automatically adjust to match gear changes, mimicking what an internal combustion roar sounds like.
Engineers also fiddled with the motors and batteries in the E-10 concept. The stock Bolt EV battery banks are separate on the truck, allowing simultaneous charging for a faster fill time, while the motors are set up in a modular design that allows up to three motor assemblies to be combined for power delivery to the transmission.
The truck itself was modified externally to include an illuminated Bowtie emblem on the grille, LED headlamps and tail lamps, a lowered suspension, 20-inch wheels, and digital displays for the instrument cluster.