It costs a quarter of a million quid. Bargain
By Sam Sheehan / Monday, December 7, 2020
Electric vehicle conversion firm Lunaz has turned its attention to the classic Range Rover, which receives its proprietary battery powerplant as part of the firm’s first 4×4 restomod offering. Town and Country versions will be offered, with the work including the complete replacement of the engine and gearbox with an electric drive system (obvs), plus a cabin spruce and sympathetic renewal of the exterior. An initial run of 50 cars are being offered for 2021, marketed like Lunaz’s other offerings as ultra high-end products – hence the starting price for each: £245,000, before local tax.
That may seem like a ludicrous amount of money to spend on an old Rangey (it’s £294,000 with VAT), but a Lunaz spokesperson confirmed to PH that there is enormous demand for such vehicles. In the same year that’s seen Lunaz launch its electric Jaguar, Bentley and Rolls-Royce conversions, the workforce at Silverstone has doubled to about 45 staffers, with an anticipated doubling again to around 90 in 2021. This includes engineers, designers and technicians, as well as manufacturing professionals – all encouraged by a substantial growth in global sales.
Given how in vogue (see what we did there?) the original Range Rover design is these days, you'd expect its introduction to accelerate that sales volume. It’s being developed using Lunaz’s existing hardware, adapted to suit the posh off-roader in either 60kWh or 90kWh forms. The former is a single motor setup, intended for use in the Town variant, while the latter is a twin-motor version that will come with the hardware needed to enable four-wheel drive. Lunaz told PH that development was at an early stage, but range is anticipated to be around 250 miles between charges, which is about the same as its other EV conversions.
Anyone familiar with Land Rover’s classic will know that this figure give its combustion engines a run for their money. And it’s not like the oily bits of the original Range Rover are famed for their reliability. Of course, Lunaz’s work goes well beyond the engine bay and freshens up the whole package, with modern suspension, anti-roll bars and brakes, beneath a body and cabin that’s updated without taking away from the original, much-loved design. As you’d expect on a product this pricey, each car can be completely customised; indeed, no two Lunaz builds are the same.
“We designed inherent flexibility within our approach to upcycling the world’s most celebrated cars,” notes Lunaz in its press release. “The commencement of production of the first electric classic Range Rovers demonstrates the scope of vehicles that can be re-engineered and given an entirely new life through conversion to our proprietary electric powertrain.”
For those wanting something especially unique, the company can produce ‘specialised’ vehicles. One European customer has already requested a Safari build that emulates the original, with an open roof and more rugged features. Given that each build is stripped back to the very base, so a bare metal restoration and comprehensive re-engineering process can begin, the opportunities for customisation are extensive. That will suit a customer base chasing one-of-a-kind exclusivity – and Lunaz's business model.
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