Seamless Integration: Transforming classic E-Types into electric marvels


ECD Automotive Design, a prominent custom vehicle builder based in central Florida, is making waves in the automotive industry with its latest venture into electric vehicle (EV) conversions. The company, known for its one-of-one customized British classics, recently showcased its all-electric Jaguar E-Type, marking a significant leap into the realm of electrification.

For those unfamiliar with ECD Automotive Design, it stands out as one of the premier builders in the industry, gaining traction for its unparalleled quality, service, and extensive customization options. The company, founded by individuals with UK roots, initially focused on delivering fully customized British classics like Range Rovers and Defenders.

ECD's journey into electric vehicles began when it started integrating Tesla motors and battery packs into its existing chassis and drivetrain. In June 2022, the company announced plans for an electric Jaguar E-Type from the 1970s, available in a roadster convertible or a 2+2 coupe.

During a recent visit to ECD's headquarters near Orlando, it became evident that the company's growth was not just in size but also in its commitment to innovation. The assembly lines showcased the progress of the Jaguar E-Type builds, with a significant shift in the building process compared to the Land Rovers the company is accustomed to.

Unlike the custom ground-up builds of Land Rovers, the electric Jaguar E-Types undergo complete restorations. ECD acquires entire vehicles across the United States, disassembles them, sandblasts usable parts, and rebuilds them as electric vehicles. Approximately 50% of the original car is reused in each build, a meticulous process that takes longer than the Land Rovers ECD has been constructing for years.

What stands out is how seamlessly the electric motor and batteries fit into the Jaguar E-Type, giving the impression that the vehicle was inherently designed to be electric. The electric configuration also remarkably matches the weight distribution of the original V12 engine and transmission setup, providing a driving experience close to the original but with enhanced torque and acceleration.

ECD's electric drivetrain configuration consists of two batteries and a motor up front, along with a third battery pack in the trunk, offering a total capacity of 42 kWh. While this may seem small by current EV standards, the company is limited by the existing chassis of the E-Type. Nevertheless, the drivetrain delivers 450 hp and a range of up to 150 miles on a single charge.

In a notable move, ECD shifted from refurbished Tesla motors and battery packs to a new configuration from Ampere EV, enabling features like 4WD, three drive modes, creep mode, and DC fast charging. The new drivetrain system brings modern EV technologies to vehicles built over 50 years ago.

A recent test drive of the electric Jaguar E-Type revealed a smooth and powerful driving experience. Despite the lower power compared to the previous Tesla configuration, the benefits of regenerative braking and improved acceleration were evident. The E-Type's handling and performance on open roads around Orlando left a lasting impression, showcasing the capabilities of ECD's electric conversions.

Before the test drive, a conversation with ECD's head of sales and design highlighted the level of customization and customer service the company provides. The attention to detail was underscored when the author returned from the drive to find a mini replica of their own electric Jaguar E-Type, emphasizing ECD's commitment from the design phase to delivery.

ECD Automotive Design's success has not gone unnoticed, attracting investor interest as the company plans to go public later this month. The upcoming bell-ringing ceremony at the New York Stock Exchange marks a significant milestone for the company, but ECD remains focused on maintaining its small and scrappy attitude toward its unique builds.

As ECD continues to evolve and expand, with plans for exciting developments in its pipeline, the company stands as a testament to the possibilities in the intersection of classic automotive craftsmanship and modern electrification. The automotive world eagerly awaits the next chapter in ECD Automotive Design's journey.

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