A smart power suit
19. February 2024
30. November 2022
To travel in time, Marty McFly and Doc Brown needed a flux compensator. But when the EVEX Porsche 910 hits the road now after forty years, all it needs is an electric motor – and with almost 500 h.p. and a top speed of over 300 km/h, time flies!
This story has all the makings of a modern motoring fairy tale: a legendary car, a mysterious genius, a rich benefactor who comes to the rescue, and three visionaries. And if everything goes according to the protagonists’ plan, there won’t just be a happy end, but a glorious future to boot. More than forty years after the debut of one of the most spectacular sports cars of its day, the EVEX Porsche 910 is on the verge of a triumphant comeback as an electric vehicle. Intended solely for company-sponsored teams, only 35 of these cars were built, starting in 1966. Low-slung and sleek, they weighed just 450 kg. The first vehicles featured a six-cylinder engine, eventually upgraded to an eight-cylinder version, whose compact 2.2-liter design generated up to 270 h.p. True, the really big prizes – like Le Mans – eluded the 910’s grasp. But at Targa Florio in 1967, for example, no fewer than three of these legendary racing cars were bound for glory.
The mysterious genius is Egon Evertz, a steel magnate from Solingen, a successful racing-car driver in his own right, master chess player, virtuoso violinist – and owner of EVEX GmbH, which in the 1970s dedicated itself to tuning current Porsche models and replicating famous racing cars. Almost as soon as the 910 debuted on the track, Evertz wanted to see the car on the street, which is why he worked hard to ensure that the EVEX Porsche would be the first vehicle of its kind to win a roadworthiness certificate, with 85% original parts including the engine – assembling the first car himself. Then the project fell into a deep enchanted sleep after reaching serial number IV.
The wealthy benefactor is Siegfried Lapawa, likewise an industrialist from Solingen, a man who heads more than a dozen companies, yet still finds time to race cars himself. Lapawa owns an original Porsche 910 built for the racetrack. A Porsche enthusiast from the start, he had his first Stuttgart-built sports car licked into shape at EVEX. The three visionaries are the Kreisel brothers from Freistadt in Austria, hailed as Europe’s answer to Tesla. It is first and foremost the amateur racing-car driver Lapawa who made this fairy tale come true – a man whose passion for Porsche and the 910 in particular has never waned. And above all, he never lost sight of Egon Evertz and his company, EVEX GmbH.
Eight years or so ago, when Lapawa stepped into the old EVEX factory halls for the first time again, he was in for a surprise: nothing had changed in forty years. He immediately decided to complete the jigsaw puzzle and build a handful of cars again. So he bought the company, lock, stock, and barrel, and scoured the planet for parts that were still missing.
Following a rather involved inventory process, it was clear that there were enough components to build a dozen vehicles, each costing around a half a million euros and equipped with a six-cylinder Boxer engine with 3.2-liter cubic capacity and 300 h.p., which at just 780 kg is good for over 300 km/h. But Lapawa isn’t just a fan of classic racing cars: he also has his sights set squarely on the future. Along with a gasoline-powered version, he also had a second variant in mind, and teamed up with the Kreisel brothers to develop 910e. The plan called for fitting the car with a 53 kWh Kreisel battery, which, off the track, could reasonably be expected to give the vehicle a range of 350 kilometers, plus two electric motors, which together represent 490 h.p./770 Nm.
The electric vehicle’s benchmark parameters don’t sound especially sensible. And the million-euro price tag is likely to keep the production numbers down. But for the Kreisel brothers, the EVEX Porsche 910 with the little “e” at the end is nevertheless a trailblazing vehicle. For one thing, insists company chief Markus Kreisel, it demonstrates that the future belongs to electric mobility, with virtually boundless potential. Secondly, following production of a handful of prototypes, the EVEX 910e turns out to be the first car that one can actually buy.
“This is the start of a whole new chapter for our company”, declares Kreisel, commenting on the transition from theory to practice. “Practice” in this case means the Kreisels and their partners are modifying the car in order to install a battery, switch the motors, and take care of the peripheral components. Among other things, these include an innovative thermo module from Rheinmetall Automotive for controlling the battery temperature, which operates especially efficiently thanks to a heat pump, significantly extending the car’s range. Not that it’s the kind of vehicle you’d really get cold in – it goes from 0 to 100 km/h in just 2.5 seconds. Even so, if the technology helps you to keep a cool head when you’re driving a high-performance racing car like this, it can’t hurt.
(Article originally published 11 May 2018)
Further information: http://evex-fahrzeugbau.de