Kalashnikov Unveils Electric Car Concept

The most famous product for which Russia’s Kalashnikov Concern is known around the world is the AK-47 assault rifle. But now the arms maker wants to spread its wings, unveiling an electric car concept this week at an expo in Moscow that the company says will hopefully make it competitive with Tesla, according to Business Insider.

The car is called the CV-1 and will reportedly have a range of 217 miles per charge. Sofia Ivanova, the company rep, “could not name the specific advantages of the Kalashnikov car,” the report says.

“The car is competing with Tesla because it’s currently a successful electric vehicle project. We expect to at least keep up with it,” Ivanova said.

The car is still just a concept at this point, so there aren’t any details around pricing or a launch date. The inspiration for the design came from a boxy 1970s-era Soviet hatchback, the Izh 2125.

The specs include a battery capacity of 90 kilowatt-hours and 220 kilowatts of power, and the car can apparently go from zero to 62 miles per hour in six seconds. The four-seat buggy “has separate electric engines for its front and rear wheels, along with hydraulic shock absorbers.”

“This technology will let us stand in the ranks of global electric car producers such as Tesla and be their competitor,” the company said in a statement. “We were inspired by the experience of global market leaders in developing our concept.”

Kalashnikov has been trying to expand its brand for a while now, including with the launch of civilian products like umbrellas and mobile phone covers. The news outlet notes that Russians haven’t exactly warmed to the idea of this car, though, with comments on the Kalashnikov Facebook page ranging from “cyberpunk” to “Izh-Zombie.”

“Your tanks are great, but it would be better if you stayed away from cars,” one user wrote.

The concept’s introduction came this week at Army 2018, a forum at which 28,000 military items from hundreds of companies were showcased. Kalashnikov, in fact, used the opportunity to not only unveil the electric car but also a hybrid buggy and an electric motorcycle.