Classic cars should be driven. That’s a mountain we here at Jalopnik are prepared to defend pretty viciously.
Whether they’re petrol-powered, diesel, or even electric, the world is undoubtedly a better place when there are more 60s, 70s and 80s style icons out roaming the streets.
But a clampdown on emissions in global cities is making it increasingly expensive to use a classic car as your daily driver.
In New York, lawmakers are hoping to implement a charge on cars driven into central Manhattan to reduce the city’s environmental impact. Meanwhile, across the US many states are targeting electric vehicles making up half of new cars sold by 2030.
Across the pond in London, drivers in the UK capital are preparing for an increase in the city’s Ultra Low Emissions Zone, which adds an additional fee for many drivers. The extra payment is on top of the city’s congestion charge for anyone driving into the center of London.
Buying a new electric-powered car is obviously one way to skirt these fees. But for anyone holding onto a vintage motor, an increasing number of companies will now bring your car into the 21st century with the addition of a few electrons.
UK-based startup Lunaz, which has backing from soccer star David Beckham, is one such company. The engineering firm offers an electrically-powered Rolls Royce and Jaguar, and just announced plans to offer an Aston Martin DB6 conversion.
For anyone looking for something with a bit more brute force, Twisted Automotive, which is based in the UK county of Yorkshire, currently markets my favorite conversions – the classic Land Rover Defender.
In the case of the Lunaz DB6, the firm will remove the original chassis and place it in storage for you. It will then fit an electrical powertrain, updated brakes, improved suspension and 21st century steering. The firm can even fit a wifi-enabled entertainment system and sat nav.
In a release, David Lorenz, founder and CEO of Lunaz Group, said: “The introduction of electric Aston Martin DB6 cars has been driven by sustained demand from our existing clients. It also reflects the desires of an entirely new classic car buyer.”
The conversion costs a cool $1 million plus taxes, so isn’t going to become a rival to the Porsche Taycan any time soon.
But companies and budding at-home engineers are now providing global millionaires with a chance to free their vintage motors from a life confined to the motor show concourse. An electric Maserati should be able to call the streets of California home, and vintage pickup owners should proudly parade their converted creations whenever they travel
After all, there’s a lot of rich people with a lot of classic cars sat collecting dust. Give these stunning vehicles another chance at life by updating them with a 21st-century power source. Don’t do it just for the sake of the environment, do it so us normals can enjoy the site of them on the street once more.