Don't adjust your browser: The DeLorean — yes, that DeLorean — is back.
The iconic vehicle made famous as the time machine Marty McFly used in the "Back to the Future" series is set to re-enter the marketplace as an all-electric version of its former self. “I've always had a soft spot for electric vehicles, and I knew the next thing I wanted to work with was the DeLorean,” CEO Stephen Wynne told AutoWeek. “After Tesla opened the door with their car, it got the fluids racing again, and I started thinking of doing it with the DeLorean.”
Some four years in the making, the company showed off a prototype of the new DMC-12 at its biannual DMC headquarters gathering in Houston over the weekend. The final version is expected to have a maximum speed of 125 miles per hour and offer 260 horsepower with a range of more than 100 miles. But the good news is, at least for fans of the original, not much will change on the outside.
"I know my market well, and there are certain things we won't mess with," Wynne said. "It will keep the stainless-steel exterior. We still want it to be a real car."
Car blog Jalopnik scored some track time with the prototype electric DeLorean and walked away grinning. From the review:
'"Turn the key until you hear the click, then turn the center dial over to 'D'" DMC president Stephen Wynne tells me. Honestly, I'm still buzzing from the sensation of closing the stainless steel gullwing door just moments earlier. I twist the key and rotate the surprisingly weighty metal dial. Silence. I press the gas pedal, which, true to form with any 1980s exotic, has so much resistance it's more like a piece of gym equipment. Press harder, and we silently glide forward."
For those regular readers of MNN, you'll know that this isn't the first time we've giddily covered someone, somewhere converting a DeLorean to run on electricity. For the 25th anniversary of the original "Back to the Future," WIRED Italy last year gutted one of the '80s originals and added some lithium-ion goodness under the hood. Flux Power out of San Francisco did something similar.
DeLorean Motor Company is keenly aware of these conversions — and smartly, will be offering current owners of the original DMC-12 the opportunity to make the switch to electric. The process, according to NPR, will take only a week.
Look for the vehicle to cost roughly $90,000 when it goes on sale in 2013. For now, check out a behind-the-wheel video of the quiet DMC-12 all-electric prototype from this weekend's event below.