Over on our sister site Autoblog, veteran automotive journalist John McElroy writes a weekly column and this week, he's calling on GM to revive the EV1. Judging by the comments on various posts here on ABGm that's a sentiment many of you could clearly get behind. I've never actually answered that particular question here but since John brought it up I will address it. At first glance it would seem pretty straightforward to just " dust off the CAD data" as John suggests and start building some new ones. The premise, as put forward by John and readers here, is that the engineering has already been done and we just need some tooling and we're off and running.
If it were only that easy. Electric cars like this are full of electronics to make everything work. The EV1 was designed in the early '90s with components that were current (so to speak) at that time. When is the last time you tried to buy a processor for a 10 year old computer? They aren't made any more and companies like Intel and Motorola are unlikely to start making them again no matter how much GM begs. That means most all of the electronics will have to be re-engineered, and the accompanying software will have to be rewritten to work. Then there is the brake system that used bits based on old ABS hardware to do regenerative brake blending. Same story about re-engineering. Then there are the airbags which don't meet current standards. Do you see where I'm going with this? The list goes on and on until we reach the batteries. By the time you're done you might have a car that looks like an EV1 in much the same way that the new Dodge Challenger looks like a 1971 Challenger, but it's a whole new beast. There is also the issue of the EV1 having been designed for low volume production. Making these in large would also require a lot of changes. You would be better off to just design a new car that's more cost effective. Rest in peace EV1; bring on the Volt.