Classic Broncos, Camaros, and the VW Bus restored, with modern gas power or electric conversions and cutting-edge supply chain technology to make the process stress-free.
Kindred Motorworks isn’t the first company to step into the role of turning classic vehicles into much better modern variants. But the company is doing something different.
Kindred offers up multiple models from different makes, with electric and gasoline powertrains. And it uses a tech-heavy process that looks to turn the restoration process into something more like an OEM assembly line.
Broncos, Buses, and Camaros, Oh My!
Kindred Motorworks is launching its line of restored classics with two very popular models. The Kindred Bronco, based on the first generation 1966-1975 Ford Broncosand the Kindred VW Bus that’s based on the classic Volkswagen microbus.
Kindred gives both a very comprehensive restoration, bringing them back to like-new condition. It upgrades the interior, adds modern power windows and a new sound system, plus comfort features like new leather, Bluetooth, LED lighting, and cupholders.
Yes, missing cupholders is a big deal on some of these vintage rides.
In the Bronco, Kindred upgrades the engine to a 460-horsepower Ford 5.0L V8. It’s paired with a modern 10-speed automatic.
Electric power in vintage steel
It’s the electric motor upgrade that has us intrigued. Kindred didn’t have all the details, but the plan is for a battery that could give the Bronco 200 miles of range.
For the electric bus, Kindred says it will have 294 horsepower, around five times the original gas engine could manage. A 74kWH battery is enough for a 200-mile range, and the bus will have 6.6kW Level 2 charging. The brakes get upgraded, too, with four-wheel power disc brakes.
Kindred Motoworks Chevy Lineup
Kindred is planning to reveal a third model during Car Week, one of two Camaros the company has planned. The Kindred Camaro LT is based on the first-generation car and gets a 700-horsepower 6.2L supercharged V8. If you don’t pick the electric option instead, that is. Kindred’s Camaro LS offers more of a cruiser look and experience and the gas car has a 495-horsepower naturally aspirated 6.2L engine.
Later this year, Kindred will launch the 3100 pickup. Based on the 1947-1953 Chevy truck, it will offer the same experience on that classic model, and will have the same electric offering as the others.
Tech Twist on Old-Fashioned Process
That’s an impressive lineup, but where Kindred looks to stand out is the experience.
“Restoring on my own classic car showed me that this was a process that I could improve upon. My prior experience working with supply chains and technology helped us remove pain points in both the production process and ownership experience,” said Kindred CEO and founder Rob Howard.
Howard says that company designers and engineers spend more than 10,000 hours prototyping and testing each model, with the goal of a classic look with modern reliability and performance.
The company boss describes car restoration today as “a time-consuming process that is dependent on a small population of rapidly aging master mechanics who use a significant number of different partners and suppliers.”
With its Blueprint tech platform, Kindred says it can standardize the restoration process. Making each one of its vehicles “back-to-back with no deviation in quality.” Or at least no deviations outside of customer requests. Howard says the company is the first to take this approach to vehicle restoration.
The cars are cool, the technology has our attention, and the idea of electric conversions is very hot right now. Preorders for the BroncoBus, and Camaro are all open now.
Prices start from $169,000 for a gas Bronco or $199,000 for a gas Camaro LT. The EV Bus starts from $199,000 as well, and production is set to start in 2024.