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BMW 528i goes electric, aims for 1,000-mile EV range record

by Justin King

The converted E39 sedan serves as a promotional tool for the disgraced entrepreneur\'s electronic recycling startup.

A disgraced entrepreneur hopes to set a new world record for electric vehicle range in his 1997 BMW 528i.

Eric Lundgren is known for several ventures that combine business ventures with social issues. He is credited with creating the first hybrid electronic recycling facility in the US, known as IT Asset Partners. Another venture involving Microsoft software led to a 15-month federal prison sentence on counterfeiting charges, as reported previously by Forbes.

The E39 chassis has been adapted to hold batteries with a total capacity above the longest-range Model S package, allegedly around 133 kilowatt-hours, according to LA Weekly. Incredibly, Lundgren claims the car and electric conversion cost just $13,800 thanks to recycled batteries.

The car demonstrates IT Asset Partner's focus on recycling processes that retain and reuse or repurpose system components instead of shredding whole complex products into small bits of recoverable metals and plastics.

Lundgren's ageing BMW is said to be powered by batteries pulled from other shorter-range EVs and smaller products such as laptops, some of which use the same type of cylindrical cells that are combined in large numbers for the Tesla Model S and X batteries.

The converted 5 Series already claims to have beat the Tesla Model S, Chevrolet Bolt and Nissan Leaf in a range test at highway speeds, allegedly cruising for more than 340 miles on a single charge. A more recent video is claimed to show a nearly 750-mile run.

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