You're 90 years too late.
I had the opportunity to ride in (and drive!) Tom Henry's 1920 Milburn, one of the first vehicles that women could drive because you didn't have to start your car using a hand crank. While it may seem so foriegn to us now, most cars didn't have an engine that you could start electrically until 1926 (that's when the Model T got electric start as standard equipment). If you didn't start a hand cranked car correctly, it might cause a "kick back" which can make a mess out of you. If you've ever started an old Huskavarna motorcycle, you might know the pain.
The Milburn is simple, pragmatic, and humble looking...it was all about utility...
- The interior is open...I mean WIDE open...like there's NOTHING in the middle of the interior except for the petals for the parking and standard brake right in front of the bench seat in the back of the car. The seating arraingement is 2 people in the back (including the driver on the left) and two in fold down jump seats in the front. It's very easy to get around inside, but not too safe given the driver is could be surrounded by passengers,
- Swappable Batteries. Under the hood and trunk lid, there are battery trays in the front and bank of the car which can be slid out to swap the batteries. If you want to charge the car, there was also a DC charge port on the back of the car...but that's not used anymore since someone installed an onboard AC charger.
- 100 Mile range. A rack of lead acid batteries would get the car 100 miles down the road. At a top speed of 20mph, that would be a 5 hour trip. Does it seem odd that 100miles was the range of electric vehicle then...and now? 100 miles is the range of the new Nissan Leaf EV and Ford Focus EV.
- Less Maintenance. There's not much to the car...suspension, brakes, motor, batteries, lights, and a dry place to sit. No gas powered motors, radiators, oil changes, belt changes, tune ups...all the maintenance stuff that sucks about owning a car. EVs were a good idea then and a better idea now for many of the same reasons...and now there's the added benefits of aiding climate change and easing our reliance on foreign oil.
The owner this very well preserved Milburn is Tom Henry. Tom is a 72 year old electrician-turned-educator who owns Tom Henry's Code Electrical Classes which has taught over 28,000 people since he opened in 1982. Over the years, he's owned several vintage cars, including 16 Model T's he recently parted with to expand his business into teaching solar courses. Tom kept the Milburn since, in his own words: I'm an electrician, I figured I needed to have an electric car!