Sears Electric Car — Specs of Today!

Globe-Union supplies batteries to Sears electric car 

Sears Electric Car

The Sears XDH-1 experimental electric vehicle

May 16, 1977 (PD: 201305)

As rising gasoline costs and concerns about the long-term sustainability of our country’s oil supply spark interest in electric and gas/electric hybrid vehicles today, so was the case in the late 1970s.

And then, like today, Johnson Controls was involved in developing electric/hybrid vehicle technology.  Globe-Union, which merged into Johnson Controls in 1978, was involved in a number of electric vehicle experiments before and after the merger.

One of these was the Sears XDH-1, which was the subject of an article in the May 16, 1977 issue of Automotive News.  The XDH-1, designed and engineered by Globe-Union, was a modified Fiat 128-3P which was powered by twenty experimental Sears DieHard batteries made by Globe-Union.

The prototype electric vehicle was designed, in part, to demonstrate the versatility of Sears’ DieHard battery line, which was marking its 10th anniversary in 1977.  The XDH-1 was able to transport two people at speeds of up to 70 miles per hour and cruise at an average speed of 65 miles per hour with a range of 100 miles.  In stop-and-go city traffic, the XDH-1 had a range of 50 to 60 miles at speeds of up to 40 miles per hour.

The XDH-1 could be recharged at any 110 or 220 volt outlet at a cost of about $0.85 for a full charge.  Even though the experiment was a success, Sears announced that it had no plans to mass produce the vehicle.