Luxury EV conversion specialists Lunaz Design has converted a rare 1961 Bentley S2 Continental to electric power. But is it sacrilege?
Like many petrolheads, we find the conversion of classic cars to electric a proper quandary. Yes, turning them EV does potentially make them more practical as an everyday car but, especially if the classic possesses a significant engine, it doe seem a bit like sticking white PVC double-glazing in a Grade I listed house.
So the news that Lunaz Design – experts in converting rare and luxury classics to EV – has taken a rare Bentley and ripped out its heart to replace it with an electric motor and batteries does seem wrong.
The Bently in question is a rare James Young-bodied 1961 S2 Continental with an early V8 engine and one of just four ever built.
There’s no arguing that Lunaz hasn’t done a cracking job with its new 400bhp OEM-standard EV conversion, with the body stripped to bare metal and returned to as-new, and brakes, steering, suspension and electrics all modernised to current standards, including fully-adjustable coil spring suspension.
The interior is treated to a ‘Green’ update with leather made from hides tanned with naturally-fallen olive leaves, carpets made from 100 per cent regenerated nylon fibre with backing made from recycled plastic bottles, and wood veneers from sustainable sources.
Lunaz has clearly gone to extreme lengths to make the S2 EV ‘green’, but despite its EV powertrain and woke materials its battery is still going to be a bigger CO2 emitter than leaving the S2’s V8 engine in situ for the rest of its days.
So, is the 1961 Bentley S2 Continental S2 EV conversion by Lumaz a smart way to make a 60-year-old Bentley fit for the future, or a sacrilege?