Electric versions of iconic classics are becoming increasingly popular as the automotive industry looks towards a zero-emissions future, and now one Britain's greatest sports cars has got the EV treatment.
Midlands-based RBW EV Classic Cars has unveiled a pre-production prototype of an all-new sports car inspired by the MGB.
Built using an all-new body shell produced by British Motor Heritage, the RBW EV Roadster rides on a patented power drivetrain system that is the result of three years of development between RBW, Continental Engineering Services (CES) and Zytek Automotive. The end result is a car that wouldn't look out of place in the 1960s, but with cutting-edge, Formula E-derived technology under the skin.
"Our patented system (Patent p: 1906698.4) places the electric motor at the rear of the car and Hyperdrive Innovation’s lithium-ion battery technology under the bonnet, which gives perfectly balanced weight distribution," said RBW managing director Peter Swain. "Not only does this give the driver much better handling of the car, retaining that sports car feel, but it also affords maximum battery volume to be housed.
"The RBW system has been tested and has achieved European Regulation No 100 of the Economic Commission, which confirms RBW as a recognised automotive worldwide manufacturer.
"What is even more exciting for us is that the RBW System and architecture can be installed into other body shells such as Austin Healey, Jaguar E-Type, Mini, and many more. Each car can be built to the clients’ personal specification and requirements. The opportunities are endless and therefore safeguards the future of classic motoring."
The bodywork and drivetrain aren't the only bespoke elements – the font and rear suspension are both unique to the vehicle as well, and consist of independent coilovers. There's also "OEM developed" brakes discs and callipers, with regenerative braking technology.
The interior features a dashboard display that includes a 7-inch 24-bit True Colour Capacitive WVGA multi-touchscreen that incorporates Pioneer's wi-fi-enabled navigation system. The setup also has a HDMI input to mirror smart phones, SD Card input and Dual USB inputs and gold-plated RCA connectors.
Only 30 examples of the RBW EV Roadster will be made with production set to begin in early 2021. Prices will start from £90,000, plus taxes, with an initial £5,000 deposit. A coupe version will also follow next year.