12v Electric Air Conditioning: now with Electric Heating too!

Our electric air conditioning system for classic Porsche 911s broke new ground when we launched it back in 2017 and we've never rested on our laurels. The system has been in constant development right from the start, with regular upgrades to the technology, including a second condenser and the hugely improved Gen 2 blower that all A/C systems now ship with. Our latest development is electric heating: a feature our clients have asked for since day one. We're delighted to share details of prototype testing.

"Our 12v electric air conditioning systems are built around a 12-volt electric pump," says Classic Retrofit MD, Jonny Hart. "Our latest heating and A/C system runs a modified version of that pump. The familiar compressor now has a four-way reversing valve. That allows us to reverse the direction of flow of the refrigerant, which means that units which were getting cool can now get hot. The heat exchange process in the condensers is also reversed, so instead of them rejecting heat, they now reject cold, which makes them get hot. This gives us a system where one blower box can provide both heating and cooling from an electric pump.

"The other interesting point from an air-cooled Porsche perspective is that we can now delete the exhaust heat exchangers and all the associated paraphernalia, including engine bay pipework, cabin ducting and more. We no longer need heat from the rear of the car: all the cabin heating and cooling systems are now in the front of the car. We can take cranky old parts and lots of weight off the car and run race headers and free-flowing exhausts without worrying about lowering cabin comfort.

"The current system in our latest Youtube video is clearly a prototype and there's a whole lot of work going on. We've got to engineer an elegant mounting solution, new airflow sections and new digital slider controls for the dashboard. Because we're producing hot and cold air from one unit, we can massively simplify air flow and ducting. We can implement clever servo motor controls on redesigned blend valves. We can delete the original cables and replace the slider control panel with electronics that open and close valves as required. We should end up with just four controls for heating, AC and directing the air to the screen, the feet or the various vent outlets.

"We've been through a UK winter with the heating installed and that's all good. We are now testing the system in warmer conditions. The product development timeline is likely 5 to 6 months, so we hope to have a production system available to order towards the end of 2024. We've already taken several orders for a version of this system for use in high-end supercars and we expect demand to significantly outstrip supply. It is an absolute game-changer that will create a whole new aftermarket sector at launch!"

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