Restomods - When old meets new

Restomods are an emerging phenomenon in the luxury and collector car market, but just what is a restomod and is it a passing fad?

 

We’ll go out on a limb here – but we reckon 2019 will be remembered as the year when the ‘restomod’ moved from being an automotive outlier genre to being part of the establishment. Cars such as those created, or modified, by specialists such as Singer Vehicle Design, Alfaholics and Eagle have become as desirable, if not more so, than those upon which they’re based – and their values continue to spiral upwards. But let’s rewind a moment.

What exactly is a restomod?

Well, unlike a restoration the point of a restomod is to mix old and new technology to create a car that from a dynamic perspective is significantly improved over the original. Comfort and driveability are significantly improved, with brakes that actually, erm, brake, improved body control and steering improved by a power-assistance. Restomods address pretty much all the negative aspects of enjoying a classic car, while maintaining the look and appearance of the original.

Of the numerous firms emerging to deliver restomods into this growing market, some stand head and shoulders above the others. Broadly speaking, these firms are steered by people whose deep appreciation for the base car is matched only by their desire to amplify them – some more sympathetically than others. We’ve picked six of the best below.

 

6 BEST RestomodS

Pure McLaren GT Series with jbr capital

Superformance Future GT Forty

Pure McLaren GT Series with jbr capital

Dodge Charger Hellephant

Superformance Future GT Forty

Using a replica GT40 as a base, Superformance install a new 3.5-liter twin-turbo EcoBoost V6 from the latest Ford GT into the iconic design. It also features aerodynamics based on the modern Ford GT race cars.

Dodge Charger Hellephant

Based on a 1968 Dodge Charger, this 1000bhp monster is fitted with a new 7.0-liter (426-cubic-inch) supercharged engine. This car was built for Dodge to celebrate the launch of the remarkable engine which, believe it or not, can be bought off the shelf.

“Restomods address pretty much all the negative aspects of enjoying a classic car, while maintaining the look and appearance of the original.”

Pure McLaren GT Series with jbr capital

Frontline Developments MG LE50

Pure McLaren GT Series with jbr capital

Porsche 911 Reimagined by Singer – Dynamics and Lightweighting Study.

Frontline Developments MG LE50

It’s a classic MGB, but significantly reimagined and re-engineered. It’ll do 0-60 mph in 5.1 seconds and reach a top speed of 160mph. Retro styling and a set of gorgeous wheels complete the look.

Porsche 911 Reimagined by Singer – Dynamics and Lightweighting Study.

A quite extraordinary evolution of the air-cooled Porsche 964. Titanium valves, 4 per cylinder, dual overhead cams, 500bhp at 9,000 rpm – and no turbos. Subtle aerodynamic modifications keep the classic silhouette intact.

“…there’s been an inevitable trickle down effect to more modestly-priced base cars and modern classics.”

Pure McLaren GT Series with jbr capital

Alfaholics Zagato-R

Pure McLaren GT Series with jbr capital

Eagle

Alfaholics Zagato-R

Built for McLaren F1 designer Gordon Murray. 230bhp, uprated brakes, improved suspension – the R ticks all the boxes. But it’s the details where this car shines; such as the Ferrari Dino door openers and the rear bulkhead significantly modified to fit its 6ft 5in driver…

Eagle

Arguably the restomod firm that started it all. Eagle has been re-manufacturing the E-Type since 1991, and the Speedster is perhaps its most desirable car. In 2011, Jeremy Clarkson famously said ‘I think this, by a long way, is the most beautiful car I have ever seen.’

In truth, the term ‘restomod’ doesn’t do justice to the skill, expertise and cost that goes into developing the cars mentioned above. For instance, Singer’s next vehicle is the result of a collaboration with the Williams F1 team and Hanz Mezger, the engineering genius behind many of Porsche’s greatest cars. It’s a mashup of Califorian hot-rodding, British Grand Prix racing expertise, and the skill and experience of one of Germany’s greatest automotive engineers (and there have been many).

 

So what of the restomod’s future?

While it’s a relatively recent phenomenon in the collector-car world, there’s little doubt it’s here to stay. Furthermore, there’s been an inevitable trickle down effect to more modestly-priced base cars and modern classics. Take a look at the Pug1Off Peugeot 205 GTis. If you can look past their name, they offer a similar ‘re-imagining’ service on one of the most famous hot-hatches of them all. Either way, we’re moving into an exciting age – where preservation and dynamic improvement of classic cars is on the up. And that’s something to celebrate.

For more information on car finance or restoration finance and to speak to one of our experts, call 020 3603 0074.

#fundyourpassion, with JBR Capital

Author: Cyrus Fateh, Team Leader Direct Sales

Cyrus Fateh, Team Leader Direct Sales

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