The 70s and 80s have been recharged.
The future is electric, or so they say. Most manufacturers have been throwing their weight behind the development of more advanced and efficient electric vehicles, and Mercedes-Benz is not far behind with models such as the EQC showing off its ability to build competent EVs. Some would argue that the likes of Tesla with its new Model Y and upcoming Cybertruck are further ahead, but perhaps we should be looking to the past instead of the future.
Enter Monceau Automobiles, a Belgium-based shop staffed by some of Formula E's brightest minds. These guys have all the latest technology at their fingertips, but instead of designing and building cutting edge EVs, they restore old Mercs to their former glory. Oh, and they electrify them as well.
Monceau Automobiles specializes in converting old Mercedes-Benz cars to run on a fully electric platform all the while restoring these classic cars to their former glory from the frame up. This process includes taking cars through a full respray and interior restoration up to true Mercedes-Benz factory spec.
Under the skin, these cars lose their gas-powered hearts and are fitted with a permanent-magnet axial flux electric motor that churns out a potent 443 pound-feet of torque. This motor is then connected to an integrated battery pack that offers up to 186 miles of electric only driving (based on the European WLTP scale).
Some of their projects include an R107-based eSL, C107-based eSLC, and W111-derived eSE. Monceau Automobiles even give customers the option of ordering these cars with or without the factory specified facelifts. This means that you can, for instance, have your eSL built to resemble any model year between 1973 and 1988. With the same powertrain fitted to every model, the average performance figures are standardized.
These cars reach a rather pedestrian top speed of 96 mph, and the zero to sixty sprint takes place in under seven seconds, with the only exception being the heavier eSE which takes around eight seconds. A conversion of this type costs around $187,000 for an eSL, and can take up to six months to complete. All we know is that we'd take one of these over a Tesla Roadster any day of the week.