There is a new Tesla quietly cruising around the UK — dreadfully quiet, in fact. Coleman Milne, a Bolton-based funeral vehicle provider, wanted to cater to those who do want to go out serenely.
The firm introduced a Tesla Model S that has been remade into a hearse. The rear seats were removed and replaced with an extended body and a pop-out section for a handling trolley — because who wants to just drag a coffin out of the trunk and hear that banging around on the inside?
Electric vehicles are ideal for funerals. They cut carbon and pollution, which lead to premature death, and they are nearly silent, providing a more peaceful environment.
I just saw a Tesla hearse. Didn't take a picture as it was "in use". And that would have been disrespect as hell. Just weird seeing that outside my local monastery chapel. Didn't know they made those.
— Lord Leo (@Regal_Romp) August 20, 2020
The hearse, which was made from an all-wheel-drive Tesla Model S starting at £77,980 (UK prices) has been extended from 4.97 meters to 5.82 meters. The height of the roof was raised 0.27 meters from its original 1.45 to 1.72. A new roof panel was needed to stretch from the top of the windscreen all the way to the lid of the trunk. Also, a pop-out storage compartment for the coffin-handline trolley ejects from the side of the vehicle when the pallbearers need it.
Coleman Milne said that the driving range of the Model S Hearse is 220 miles, but this does depend on which version of the Model S is used as the donor car. Current versions can offer a range over 367 miles, and here in the US, the EPA noted that the 2020 Model S has a range of over 400 miles.
Whether or not the hearse can go from 0–62 mph in 2.3 seconds isn’t known. It would be interesting to see a Hearse race (minus the precious cargo). The Bolton Company stated, “With state-of-the-art technology and equipment, the new all-electric hearse makes a very clear statement: the future drives electric.” They also admired the stylish design. “Silent, stylish and ideal for customers operating in Ultra Low Emission and Clean Air Zones across the country. The all-electric hearse also fulfills the rising customer demand for Eco-Funerals.”
Although no price has been confirmed, funeral directors can make arrangements for test driving the vehicle.
This may be the first Tesla hearse in the UK, but it’s not the first Tesla hearse overall. In the Netherlands, Van der Lans & Busscher Staatsievervoer had a Tesla Model S modified by RemetzCar years ago. CleanTechnica got to check out the vehicle in person in 2017.
This older hearse made its debut at the 2016 Funeral Exhibition. Autoblog noted, “If there’s ever a car ride in which you don’t have a lot of control over what you’re riding in, it’s your last one in a hearse. While burial rituals vary tremendously around the world, anyone who wants to go out in a blaze of green will likely agree that this is a classy way to do it. Say hello to the Tesla Hearse. Dutch stretch car builder RemetzCar is now offering to turn your Tesla Model S into a glass-canopied funeral coach. And if there was ever a time where Autopilot would be tremendously appropriate, a final ride from the funeral home to the burial site seems like the ideal time. If RemetzCar could get Tesla to figure out a way to make it driver in a slow, somber fashion, the ghostly impact of pulling up without a driver must certainly appeal to some.”
In the video above, CleanTechnica’s Zach Shahan interviewed the folks at Van der Lans & Busscher Staatsievervoer about the unique Tesla. One thing he noted was that his footsteps were louder than the car! Other points from the interview noted that the funeral home didn’t charge extra for the use of the Tesla Hearse. When Zach interviewed the driver, he talked about the crazy acceleration, but his favorite feature was having Spotify in the car. They also told CleanTechnica that customers love the hearse because it’s a Tesla and often talk about how peaceful the ride is.
With both Model S hearses, none of the electrical parts were changed and the drivers can Supercharge the vehicles. The idea of a peaceful ride in an EV in comparison with loud gasoline or diesel vehicles may not seem like that big of a deal, but keep in mind death and grief affect us in many ways. People are often in shock and the quiet can be soothing. Whether you want to be buried, cremated, mummified, or have SpaceX send your ashes to the Andromeda galaxy, many often use funeral homes to make arrangements for transportation. (In the case of my mother, we used USPS to ship her remains back to Louisiana in 2011. That was before the first Tesla Model S was even produced.)
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