The story of Neil Young and his Lincvolt has had its ups and downs. From an idea first made public in 2008 to its SEMA debut in 2010, the 1959 Lincoln Continental Mark IV convertible was shepherded through a lot of engineering work by the Canadian rocker to become an E85-burning plug-in hybrid. In late 2010, the car caught fire but Young brought it back to life earlier this year. Long may you run, indeed.

In its current incarnation, the Lincvolt has an E85-capable Ford Atkinson-cycle four-cylinder engine that works with an onboard UQM 145-KW generator to charge the 21.4-kWh battery pack. From a Level 2 wall socket, the pack charges in about six hours, but the cellulosic ethanol in the tank can apparently fill the battery in approximately 60 minutes when the Lincvolt is idling. With a full battery, the car has a range of 50 miles and, thanks to a fuel economy rating of around 23.5 miles per gallon, the Lincvolt can go the distance: 400 miles without stopping.

This week, Young is returning to Las Vegas to give the Green Performance Keynote on the topic of "Repowering the American Dream." The purpose, according to SEMA PR, is for Young "to inspire a generation by creating a clean automobile propulsion technology that serves the needs of the 21st century and delivers performance that is a reflection of the driver's spirit." The speech happens tomorrow, Thursday, November 7, starting at 11 a.m. (Vegas time) and you'll be able to stream it by watching the video below.



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  • 14 Comments
      2 wheeled menace
      • 1 Year Ago
      He's mated a gas engine with a battery again... the electric gods aren't gonna be any happier about this reincarnation.. ;)
      goodoldgorr
      • 1 Year Ago
      Is it possible to put E85 in a gm volt ?
        omni007
        • 1 Year Ago
        @goodoldgorr
        Yes. Technically you can put E85 in any car. But the Volt isn't "Flex Fuel Certified", so it probably would not like E85.
      SteveG
      • 1 Year Ago
      What Atkinson cycle engine does Ford make? Or is this a fake Atkinson like Toyota uses? Those are modified Otto cycle engine that just use a different intake timing.
        Ele Truk
        • 1 Year Ago
        @SteveG
        I think all Atkinson in cars are fake. The real Atkinson cycle works with an link coupling that actually changes the stroke length depending on the cycle. The "Atkinson" engines in Prius and Ford are really Otto cycle with adjusted valve timings. Also the real Atkinson goes through all 4 cycle in 1 rotation of the crankshaft. I wonder if any car manufacturers are even thinking about building a true Atkinson?
        omni007
        • 1 Year Ago
        @SteveG
        I think it's from the C-Max.
      danfred411
      • 1 Year Ago
      It's still a terribly heavy and inefficient vehicle but the Sema crowd likes terrible vehicles so..
      BraveLil'Toaster
      • 1 Year Ago
      "With a full battery, the car has a range of 50 miles" I'd bet the way they mean that is the same way that Nissan means the Leaf has a range of 100 miles. It also demonstrates the kind of efficiency penalty you get from adding a land-yacht worth of weight to the car. So if anyone's wondering why no one has made an electric SUV yet... there you go.
      Warren
      • 1 Year Ago
      Don't let Elon see this thing. He will want to sell these next.
      Grendal
      • 1 Year Ago
      Dan's head will explode with this one. Light? Hell no. Aerodynamic? As a rolling brick. Efficient? 60 - 70 MPGe maybe. Not much better than buying an economy car. It is cool and I like Neil Young so it isn't a loss. But really for the money this thing had to cost you could probably buy 2 or 3 loaded Model S's and give a couple away to friends. Or just buy 10 Nissan Leafs for all your friends and you will be promoting a greener future real well.
        Marcopolo
        • 1 Year Ago
        @Grendal
        @ Grendal Neil Young's interest in electric cars, and the environment, stretches back many years. The LincVolt was conceived as a conversion long before any production EV existed, to show how even the most excessive of ICE vehicles could benefit from EV technology. In 2005 as a exercise to learn about the latest Lithium-ion batteries and BMS technology, we produced six EV conversions based on Mazda MX-5 (Miata in the US ) gliders, as Island resort rental units. The cars could charge from Solar or palm-oil (even bio-mass ) generators, and because of the lack of gasoline, and oil, could be housed within the resort foyer ! Easy to drive and with speed and distance not a problem, these units have proved very durable. (my daughter learned to drive in one). Today, many of these early conversions are being forgotten with the proliferation of professionally built EV's. While many early EV enthusiast conversions probably should be forgotten, (or never attempted) others should be remembered as real pioneers in the cause of EV advancement. The LincVolt was a wonderful publicity concept in the days when EV Technology, was just something greenies and nerds talked about.
          Marcopolo
          • 1 Year Ago
          @Marcopolo
          @ danfred411 Three are still in operation. One was lost in a cyclone, another was written off in an accident with a garbage truck while parked, and the third was driven into the ocean by overly exuberant couple celebrating their honeymoon under the romantic stars of the South Pacific ! The Mazda MX-5 is an ideal conversion vehicle, as is the Suzuki SJ30 4 WD and the Daihatsu Van produced in Malaysia. The days of commercial EV conversions, are drawing to a close due to the proliferation of OEM models being released and the difficulty of converting complicated ESC systems and similar technology. With the high value of $ Aus dollar, It's cheaper to order a specialised EV built in Taiwan, Malaysia, or even the PRC, by a recognised manufacturer, than build a conversion. If I lived in Denmark, and I wanted to custom build my own EV, I would choose a Porsche 914 as a donor glider. The 914 is simple, light, cheap, with easily restored/ modified body work, and provides an excellent platform. I'm sure that many enthusiasts belonging to the Dansk Elbil Komité, or similar clubs would be happy to share their EV knowledge, and help you build you own EV. Good Luck.
          danfred411
          • 1 Year Ago
          @Marcopolo
          Do you have any website or video info about those cars? Are they still running today?
      imoore
      • 1 Year Ago
      Just look at that car. It's just beautiful. Now this is a Lincoln. Ford, are you seeing this? This is your inspiration. Build a car that is worthy of the Lincoln name.
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