1969 Saab 96 Gets the Electric Car Treatment

One of the most aerodynamic cars of its era, the “Born from Jets” Saab 96 was a futuristic, 2-door sedan when it launched in 1960. One that slipped quietly through the air with far more punch than its tiny, two-stroke engine had any right delivering. It was supremely innovative for its day, too, and that innovation made the car an early racing success– bringing home multiple first-place finishes at the Rally Monte Carlo and RAC Rally in Wales, among others. It’s only fitting, then, that some enterprising Saab enthusiast would convert a 96 to electric power, making the tiny car seem innovative yet again!

That seems to be the thinking behind this lovingly converted 1969 example found on Bring a Trailer. The car had already sold– for just $4500!– by the time it crossed my path, but it was just such a great build I had to include it.

Take a look at the pictures, above, then read the original listing (included, below, in case it vanishes) and let me know what you think of this plug-in 96 in the comments section at the bottom of the page. While you’re there, tell me if you think it’s a cleaner install than that electric Volvo 142 I covered a few months ago. Enjoy!


    No Reserve: 1969 Saab 96 Electric Conversion

    This 1969 Saab 96 has been rebuilt as an electric vehicle using an EV-America setup which consists of a 203-series motor from Advanced DC Motors, Inc. paired with 10 batteries and a four-speed manual transmission that operates without a clutch pedal. The car was acquired by the selling dealer in summer 2019, reportedly from an auction to which it was donated by its creator. This electric 96 is now offered in Florida with owner’s and workshop manuals, a logbook containing receipts and operating instructions for the electric conversion, and a transferable Rhode Island registration.

    The exterior has undergone a color change to white and features chrome bumpers as well as pop-out rear quarter windows. The stock fuel tank has been removed, and a cooling fan for the charging system vents through an exhaust hole located in the left quarter panel.

    White steel wheels wear polished Saab hubcaps. The springs were reportedly adjusted to account for the car’s additional weight, and the current ride height is said to match that of the stock suspension setup.

    The interior features seats trimmed in gray cloth with black vinyl bolsters. The driver-side door panel is missing, and no carpeting is present on the floors. The seller states that the lights, turn signals, windshield wipers, and emergency brake run off their own electrical system and are functional. The body-colored dash houses instrumentation including a battery charge indicator, a voltmeter, an ammeter, and a 120-mph speedometer. The five-digit odometer shows just under 20k miles, with actual mileage unknown.

    A 203-06-4001 motor from Advanced DC Motors, Inc. is connected to 10 Trojan T-1275 batteries and sends power to the front wheels. The column-shifted four-speed manual transmission is said to remain functional, and is reportedly operated without a clutch pedal while lifting off the accelerator … the drive system can be charged by connecting a port behind the fuel filler door to a regular AC outlet.

Source | More Photos: Bring a Trailer.

I've been in and around the car industry for over twenty years. Sometimes racing, sometimes selling, sometimes fixing- sometimes, even just washing!- but Cars and Trucks and Things That Go are what I'm all about.