Electric VW Visits Area

For those old enough to remember, the old Volkswagen Kharman Ghia was a sporty little car in the 1960s and 1970s.

The team at Mind Drive, an afterschool project to help inner city kids in Kansas City, brought the car, revamped to be completely electric, to the area on Monday on their way to Washington, D.C.

The students and their mentors replaced the original four-cylinder gas engine with three lithium-ion battery packs that weigh about 110 pounds each.

Organizers said their re-engineered Kharman Ghia is capable of highway speeds and can run for about 70 miles before needing to stop for two hours for a re-charge.

“We have 32 students that are in an automotive and a communications class and we try to do extraordinary things, engage them in education,” said Mind Drive coordinator Steve Rees. “A lot of them have not been engaged, so at the bottom, it is them using their hands to learn about physics, through actually applying physics.”

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