Following the trend of transforming old cars into BEVs, Czech business MW Motors is selling the entirely electric Spartan, which is based on the great Russian UAZ Hunter. The electromod was introduced in early 2020, but because of the pandemic, the market release was delayed by more than a year.
For those unfamiliar with Russian automotive history, UAZ Hunter made its debut in 1971 with the release of the UAZ-469 military vehicle. It has marketed over 2 million units in 80 countries since then, demonstrating its endurance and off-road skills.
Except for the motor, the MWM Spartan preserves the majority of the UAZ's original components. The new fully-covered grille featuring vertical slots (instead of horizontal) and the digital instrument cluster on the dash separate it in terms of design.
A completely new electric engine delivers 161 hp (120 kW / 163 PS) and 600 Nm (442.5 lb-ft) of torque under the hood. This may not seem like much, but it is a significant upgrade over the initial naturally aspirated 2.7-liter engine, which produced 126 hp (94 kW / 128 PS) and 210 Nm (155 lb-ft) of torque.
Despite the change to electric power, MWM Spartan Electromod retains its 5-speed manual transmission and max speed of 130 km/h (81 mph). Waterproof housing protects the lithium-ion battery, which has a volume of 62.16 kWh and a range of 150 kilometers (93 miles). A 90 kWh battery is available for longer excursions.
The off-gross roader's mass has grown to 1,966 kg due to the electric motor and battery. MWM Spartans are available for €39,900 ($47,394) in both left- and right-hand drive variants. While the roof, anti-corrosion coating, and back differential lock are not costly for a spartan off-roader, it is still less expensive than similar upgrades of Defenders, Broncos, G-Wagens, or Jeeps.
MWM is selling a more classic Spartan with a gasoline engine, starting from €19,900 ($23,642), for those who want traditional ICE.