There’s differing opinions on what makes classic cars, classic. Most tend to agree that age is the best measurement. Others say that it’s the vehicle’s significance in the market. There’s some talk about the vintage vehicles that have had EV auto parts installed on them. One historic vehicle organization, however, says no to the last part.
The International Federation of Historic Vehicles, or FIVA (Federation Internationale des Vehicules Anciens), has taken a stand against EV conversions on electric vehicles. Founded back in 1966, this worldwide organization’s central purpose is to preserve and protect historic vehicles. Current membership is estimated to sit at around 2 million car owners, with 85 membership groups spread across 62 countries across the world.
The group posted on their Facebook page a statement on the matter, saying that the conversion of historic vehicles, from their original combustion engines to EV auto parts doesn’t meet their definition of a historic vehicle, nor does it align with their purpose of preserving old vehicles and the culture associated with them. Simply put, the group doesn’t consider any historic vehicle that has undergone electric vehicle conversion to be a historic vehicle, as they perceive that a large part of these cars have been altered.
The FIVA’s official definition of a historic vehicle covers any car or truck that is at least 3 decades old, preserved and maintained in historically accurate condition, not used for daily travel, and is also part of the world’s technological and cultural heritage.
FIVA’s stance is notable, though given their stated purpose, not unexpected. That being said, the market has different ideas, with key automakers like Volkswagen offering EV swaps for its models, including even the classic Beetle.
FIVA VP Tiddo Bresters issued a statement on the matter, saying that FIVA’s view is that more than a shape or body style of a car that makes it historic, but also its construction and manufacture in its original condition. Hence, they recommended that, if any owner, manufacturer, or engineer looks to make an EV conversion, they recommend keeping any parts stored and catalogued in order to make the change reversible, and allow for the car to be returned to their original state, and become a historic vehicle again.