For some manufacturers, the EV craze has morphed right into a bizarre rose-tinted acid journey. There’s no motive Renault couldn’t have offered a automotive that appeared just like the upcoming Renault 5 EV with an internal-combustion engine, or Hyundai couldn’t have made a gasoline-powered Ioniq 5 years in the past. But seemingly , automakers have come to appreciate that nostalgia is the simplest technique to promote one thing new and unfamiliar, even when the nostalgia that’s doing all of the heavy lifting isn’t their very own.
It’s that final level that actually sticks with me as I flip by renderings of the Vanwall Vandervell: an electrical, five-door hatch that might not be extra of a Lancia Delta Integrale sendup if it tried, pitched by a German endurance racing workforce that could or could not personal the rights to a long-defunct British Formula 1 constructor. (“Vandervell,” you see, was the surname of Vanwall’s founder, Tony Vandervell, which makes this type of like their Enzo.) The EV that bears his identify is projected to price about $138,000, with solely 500 slated to be constructed by the third quarter of this 12 months.
I received’t deny the Vandervell appears good, however let’s be actual — you may’t not with these Giugiaro-aping, two-box proportions. Besides, the sharp exterior doesn’t change the truth that the Vanwall selecting to construct an electrical sizzling hatch impressed by an Italian all-wheel-drive rally icon makes about as a lot sense as Polestar’s subsequent automotive being a love letter to the Nissan Silvia. Neat, I assume, however why?
As far as specs go, Vanwall — or ByKolles, if we’re contemplating who actually made the announcement — claims the bottom mannequin will supply 315 horsepower, attain 62 MPH from a standstill in 4.9 seconds, high out at 114 mph and final for 279 miles on a full cost, per Autocar. That’s not significantly brisk, at the very least in opposition to different efficiency EVs. For that there’s the Vandervell S, with its 572 hp, 3.4-second 0-62 MPH dash, 144-mph high velocity and 260 miles of longevity. We don’t but know the way a lot that one will price.
We additionally don’t know the way a lot the Vandervell will weigh, regardless that it’s been known as “lightweight,” nor what the inside appears like, although it’s been stated to function “outstanding ergonomics.” Leather and uncovered carbon fiber, too. What a time to be alive.
Exterior renderings are all now we have for the time being. Vanwall’s actually not the primary new (or newly reborn) automotive firm to guide with online game fashions, however provided that the Vandervell’s solely six to 9 months away, photos of an actual automotive would lend some useful credibility. ByKolles additionally needs to construct and promote a roadgoing model of its Le Mans Hypercar, which is gearing up for its maiden World Endurance Championship bid when the 2023 season kicks off with the 12 Hours of Sebring in March.