The Nissan Leaf is a nice little electric car, but it doesn’t quite compare to this custom-built 1987 Nissan Sunny Pickup EV. At the annual Specialty Equipment Market Association (SEMA) show, Nissan unveiled this stunning EV conversion powered by the Leaf’s electric motors.
Instead of your typical LS swap, this is a Leaf-swapped truck designed to showcase two different eras of the Nissan brand. It pays homage to the old Datsun race trucks, complete with red, white, and blue colors, while incorporating an all-electric drivetrain.
The 1987 Nissan Sunny, owned and built by Tommy Pike Customs out of South Carolina, ditched the small old gas-powered engine for a modern electric system. The truck gets power from the Nissan Leaf’s 40-kWh lithium-ion battery, delivering around 147 horsepower and 236 lb-ft of torque.
Due to the small size of the Sunny truck, Pike chose to go with the base Leaf S electric motor and battery rather than the bigger model on current Leaf EVs. Even with that choice, this 1987 Sunny has triple the torque and nearly twice as much power as the original released back in the 80s.
Better yet, this 1987 Sunny Pickup is a right-hand drive vehicle with the original manual transmission inside. It looks stunning on the outside thanks to the wide-body kit and custom-fabricated design.
TPC (Tommy Pike Customs) also did an LED lightning conversion and added heavy-duty rear leaf springs and front suspension from a Nissan 240SX with coilovers, disc brakes, and more. It’s as modern as it gets while still having that classic 80s race truck vibe.
This isn’t the first time we’ve seen such a conversion from Nissan. Last year the company revealed a 1980s Altima EV, which was pretty impressive too. Unfortunately, this is nothing more than an exciting concept for the SEMA show. Nissan didn’t announce plans to offer an electric Leaf engine package for enthusiasts to create their own custom vehicles.
At least years SEMA show, Ford debuts its e-crate Eluminator motor, and we were hoping for a similar announcement from other manufacturers this year. Still, this all-electric 1987 Sunny Pickup Truck EV is one for the books.