The DeLorean Is Coming Back as an Electric Car

The DeLorean car on the red carpet at Venice Film Festival

Great Scott! The DeLorean is going back to the future as an electric car.

The pop culture phenomenon—which was powered by radioactive plutonium and trash power on the big screen—is going all-electric IRL.

The once-defunct DeLorean Motor Company, now branded as DeLorean Motors Reimagined LLC, aired a teaser for the new sports car during a Super Bowl commercial.

The 15-second clip featured a silhouette of the famed gull-winged car along with the hashtags #DeloreanEVolved and #ElectricVehicle. “The Future was never promised. Reimagine today,” the company Tweeted. “Sign up for the premiere of the DeLorean in 2022.”

DeLorean goes electric

The stainless steel car turned time-traveling machine gained notoriety in the sci-fi/comedy trilogy Back to the Future, which hit theaters in 1985, 1989, and 1990, respectively.

Off of the big screen, the DeLorean was short-lived, seeing only two years of production in 1981 and 1982. The DeLorean Motor Company, founded by engineer John DeLorean back in 1975, manufactured fewer than 9,000 of the cars before the company filed for bankruptcy and shut down production amid a lack of consumer demand. (A drug smuggling charge against DeLorean also didn’t help matters.)

In 1995, car industry executive Stephen Wynne re-established the company in Texas, predominantly to service the some 6,000 DeLoreans that were still on the road. Time travel forward to present day, and a group of former Karma Automotive execs—led by Joost de Vries—have teamed up with Wynne to revamp the classic car sans fossil fuels.

Although details remain sparse, the new DeLorean electric car concept is sure to be an innovation that even the time-traveling Doc would have approved.

Electric is actually the future

As countries around the world eschew gas-guzzling cars in favor of electric power for environmental concerns, it’s no surprise that DeLorean is looking to make an all-electric comeback.

Last year, at COP26—the United Nations’ annual climate change summit—a number of countries pledged to make all new car sales zero-emission by 2040 (or sooner). These included Canada, Israel, Austria, Mexico, Netherlands, U.K., Sweden, and Turkey. And although the U.S. didn’t join the proclamation, several states have—such as California, Washington, and New York.

A lengthy list of major car makers have also announced plans to transition to electric vehicles. Luxury British automaker Bentley, Volvo, and Ford Europe aim to be fully electric by 2030. Honda aims to achieve 100 percent electric car sales in North America by 2040. Mercedes-Benz, General Motors, and Audi have also made similar all-electric pledges.