Purists are going to hate this one.
Lunaz Design, the automotive firm that transforms legendary classics into electric restomods, has revealed its latest project based on the gorgeous 1961 Bentley S2 Continental.
Fitting a classic car with an electric drivetrain is nothing new, and several outfitters will happily transform your vintage vehicle into a zero-emissions cruiser. Doing so to a Porsche 911, a relatively common classic car, is already considered sacrilege - but what about an ultra-rare Bentley?
Just four examples of the 1961 S2 Continental were ever made, but that hasn't stopped Lunaz from replacing the original 6.2-liter V8 with Lunaz's proprietary modular electric drivetrain. Whether you like it or not, there's no denying this is a very impressive project. Let's take a closer look.
The owner of this stately Brit specified the fully-electric drivetrain. Despite the lack of a V8, the S2 Continental now produces 394 horsepower and 530 lb-ft of torque. This gives the big Bentley enough motivation to hit 62 mph in 6.9 seconds; considerably quicker than the standard vehicle.
In keeping with the Continental's relaxed character, the battery-powered Bentley rides on a fully adjustable coil-spring suspension that can be figured from within the cabin. To bring the hefty bruiser to a stop, Lunaz has fitted the classic with six-piston calipers up front and four-piston items in the rear. A battery regeneration system has also been implemented into the braking system.
The interior is a mix of classic elegance and sustainable materials. The seats may look like they were handcrafted all those years ago, but Lunaz has retrimmed the interior with leather tanned using naturally-fallen olive leaves. Even the carpets are fashioned out of 100% regenerated nylon fiber. The carpet backing is made from 100% recycled plastic bottles.
This trend is becoming popular, with automakers adopting more sustainable measures in the production of certain components. The Continental S2's glorious wood veneer dashboard has been responsibly sourced with wood certified by the Forestry Stewardship Council (FSC).
Lunaz respects the history and rarity of every vehicle it touches and has a stringent "upcycling" process that each project goes through.
Lunaz employees first inspect the vehicle to determine what needs to be done. Engineers make use of 3D scanning to create digital models as the foundation for any restoration work that will be carried out.
Once this is completed, the vehicle is stripped down to a shell and restored using traditional coachbuilding methods. Any components that can be kept are lovingly restored, but if they can't be reused, Lunaz will recycle the part. The V8 engine and all the associated running gear are removed and "reclaimed."
Whether this means it can be refitted is another story, but we're glad to know the engine isn't simply discarded.
"This magnificent Bentley S2 Continental was already an exceptional motor car, as one of just a few examples of its type that remain in the world. In its new guise, it's the rarest vehicle ever to be converted to fully electric propulsion, and the most exclusive project we've ever undertaken at Lunaz Design," said company founder David Lorenz.
The vehicle in question started life in 1961 as a UK-supplied car before heading overseas for many years. After living in Germany and Japan, it returned to its home country and has now been electrified. Now, it gets to live out the rest of its days as an all-electric luxury classic.
Bentley has committed to going all-electric by 2030 but, in the meantime, offers eco-conscious consumers the Bentayga and Flying Spur Hybrid, both of which are plug-in hybrid vehicles.
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