UK firm to convert 30 vintage Rolls-Royces into electric cars

Rolls-Royce bosses have already said it will be producing only electric cars by 2040, but the iconic British brand has been beaten to the punch by a small UK firm that is converting 30 of its beautiful vintage models into zero-emission vehicles.

Lunaz, which specialises in ripping petrol engines out of classic cars and replacing them with batteries and electric motors, has today announced the availability of vintage Phantoms and Silver Clouds that produce no exhaust pollution whatsoever.

Just 30 examples are due to be built at its headquarters in Silverstone, all of which will have ranges in excess of 300 miles on a full charge and their own on-board bar service. 

And they won’t be cheap. Prices start from £350,000 for the Silver Cloud examples and the Phantoms are half a million pounds, That not only means these suave – and silent – recreations are six seven times pricier than a standard sixties Roller, but also pricier than the current Phantom VIII built at Goodwood.

Electric Roller: British firm Lunaz will convert 30 vintage Rolls-Royce cars into 21st century electric vehicles, beating the iconic car builder to the punch

Electric Roller: British firm Lunaz will convert 30 vintage Rolls-Royce cars into 21st century electric vehicles, beating the iconic car builder to the punch

Electric Roller: British firm Lunaz will convert 30 vintage Rolls-Royce cars into 21st century electric vehicles, beating the iconic car builder to the punch

Rolls-Royce Motor Cars has plans for its entire fleet of future models to be fully electric by 2040. But Lunaz, based in Silverstone. is already converting its classic cars to zero-emission models

Rolls-Royce Motor Cars has plans for its entire fleet of future models to be fully electric by 2040. But Lunaz, based in Silverstone. is already converting its classic cars to zero-emission models

Rolls-Royce Motor Cars has plans for its entire fleet of future models to be fully electric by 2040. But Lunaz, based in Silverstone. is already converting its classic cars to zero-emission models

Lunaz isn’t new to the scene of repurposing vintage cars to make them zero emissions, ULEZ compliant and quieter than an ant in slippers.

The Northamptonshire conversion specialists have been doing the same to classic Jaguars and Bentleys for some years.

‘The time is right for an electric Rolls-Royce,’ says its founder, David Lorenz.

‘We are answering the need to marry beautiful classic design with the usability, reliability and sustainability of an electric powertrain. 

‘More than ever we are meeting demand for clean-air expressions of the most beautiful and luxurious cars in history. We are proud to make a classic Rolls-Royce relevant to a new generation.’ 

Lunaz, which specialises in ripping petrol engines out of classic cars and replacing them with batteries and electric motors, has today announced the availability of vintage Phantom Vs (pictured) and Silver Clouds that produce no exhaust pollution whatsoever

Lunaz, which specialises in ripping petrol engines out of classic cars and replacing them with batteries and electric motors, has today announced the availability of vintage Phantom Vs (pictured) and Silver Clouds that produce no exhaust pollution whatsoever

Lunaz, which specialises in ripping petrol engines out of classic cars and replacing them with batteries and electric motors, has today announced the availability of vintage Phantom Vs (pictured) and Silver Clouds that produce no exhaust pollution whatsoever

Just 30 examples are due to be built at its headquarters in Silverstone

Just 30 examples are due to be built at its headquarters in Silverstone

All will have driving ranges in excess of 300 miles on a full charge

All will have driving ranges in excess of 300 miles on a full charge

Just 30 examples are due to be built at its headquarters in Silverstone, all of which will have ranges in excess of 300 miles

Performance figures and charging times haven't yet been revealed to the mere mortals who could never afford a Roller in the first place, but it should be capable of taking rapid charging, with the port located on the driver's-side rear wing

Performance figures and charging times haven't yet been revealed to the mere mortals who could never afford a Roller in the first place, but it should be capable of taking rapid charging, with the port located on the driver's-side rear wing

Performance figures and charging times haven’t yet been revealed to the mere mortals who could never afford a Roller in the first place, but it should be capable of taking rapid charging, with the port located on the driver’s-side rear wing

The first of the 30 models to have their 6.2-litre V8 engines dissected and replaced with a green powertain has been completed – and looks incredible.

Each car will be stripped back to the base metal, 3D-scanned, weighed and then fully restored before the eight-cylinder lump and the remaining drivetrain is ripped out.

In its place will be a massive 120kWh battery pack. The UK firm says this should be good enough for a range of 300 miles and more.

Performance figures and charging times haven’t yet been revealed to the mere mortals who could never afford a Roller in the first place, but it should be capable of taking rapid charging, with the port located on the driver’s-side rear wing. A convetional socket looks like it is under a separate cover on the opposite wing.

The first of the 30 models to have their 6.2-litre V8 engines dissected and replaced with a green powertain has been completed - and looks incredible. First, it had to be stripped back to the bare metal

The first of the 30 models to have their 6.2-litre V8 engines dissected and replaced with a green powertain has been completed - and looks incredible. First, it had to be stripped back to the bare metal

The first of the 30 models to have their 6.2-litre V8 engines dissected and replaced with a green powertain has been completed – and looks incredible. First, it had to be stripped back to the bare metal

Once stripped back, the V8 engines are pulled out and replaced with a massive 120kWh battery pack and electric motors. The UK firm says this should be good enough for a range of 300 miles and more

Once stripped back, the V8 engines are pulled out and replaced with a massive 120kWh battery pack and electric motors. The UK firm says this should be good enough for a range of 300 miles and more

Once stripped back, the V8 engines are pulled out and replaced with a massive 120kWh battery pack and electric motors. The UK firm says this should be good enough for a range of 300 miles and more

Performance figures and charging times haven't yet been revealed to the mere mortals who could never afford a Roller in the first place

Performance figures and charging times haven't yet been revealed to the mere mortals who could never afford a Roller in the first place

Performance figures and charging times haven’t yet been revealed to the mere mortals who could never afford a Roller in the first place

And while on the outside it might look like a debonair limo lifted from the sixties and dropped into a world of electrified motorcycles, cars like Teslas and even scooters, from the inside it will fit seamlessly into 2020.

That’s because the period cabin will be modernised with the inclusion of sat-nav, onboard WiFi, a full infotainment system, USB charge ports and air-conditioning – though Lunaz says this will all be ‘sensitively integrated’ into the car’s original woodwork.

There are current-era treats for those in the back – with the Phantom able to carry up to eight people at a time – with stunning leather-covered chairs, rose-gold inlays, two televisions, a privacy screen dividing them from the driver and a full bar service complete with finely-crafted decanters.

There are current-era treats for those in the back - with the Phantom able to carry up to eight people at a time - with stunning leather-covered chairs and rose-gold inlays

There are current-era treats for those in the back - with the Phantom able to carry up to eight people at a time - with stunning leather-covered chairs and rose-gold inlays

There are current-era treats for those in the back – with the Phantom able to carry up to eight people at a time – with stunning leather-covered chairs and rose-gold inlays

Two television screen are fitted for rear-seat passengers and there's a privacy screen to separate them from the driver

Two television screen are fitted for rear-seat passengers and there's a privacy screen to separate them from the driver

Two television screen are fitted for rear-seat passengers and there’s a privacy screen to separate them from the driver

Electric Rolls-Royce with Spirit of Ecstasy emblem

Electric Rolls-Royce with Spirit of Ecstasy emblem

The period cabin will be modernised with the inclusion of sat-nav, onboard WiFi, a full infotainment system, USB charge ports and air-conditioning - though Lunaz says this will all be 'sensitively integrated' into the car's original woodwork

The period cabin will be modernised with the inclusion of sat-nav, onboard WiFi, a full infotainment system, USB charge ports and air-conditioning - though Lunaz says this will all be 'sensitively integrated' into the car's original woodwork

The period cabin will be modernised with the inclusion of sat-nav, onboard WiFi, a full infotainment system, USB charge ports and air-conditioning – though Lunaz says this will all be ‘sensitively integrated’ into the car’s original woodwork

The brakes, suspension, steering and entire electronics will also be upgraded to ensure it goes, stops and rides like a modern vehicle – and without breaking down each time you take it out.  

Priced at £500,000, each will be almost £150,000 more expensive than a brand new – though entirely standard and bespoke-option-free – Phantom VIII.

And with classic car insurer Hagerty valuing a ‘concours’ example of a 1961 Phantom V at between £76,900 and £138,600, you’re certainly paying a premium to go emissions free and avoid London’s Congestion Zone and ULEZ daily charges. 

The cabin also benefits from a full bar service, complete with finely-crafted decanters just incase you wanted a quick tipple on a journey

The cabin also benefits from a full bar service, complete with finely-crafted decanters just incase you wanted a quick tipple on a journey

The cabin also benefits from a full bar service, complete with finely-crafted decanters just incase you wanted a quick tipple on a journey 

Lunaz isn't new to the scene of repurposing vintage cars to make them zero emissions, ULEZ compliant and quieter than an ant in slippers

Lunaz isn't new to the scene of repurposing vintage cars to make them zero emissions, ULEZ compliant and quieter than an ant in slippers

Lunaz isn’t new to the scene of repurposing vintage cars to make them zero emissions, ULEZ compliant and quieter than an ant in slippers

The brakes, suspension, steering and entire electronics will also be upgraded to ensure it goes, stops and rides like a modern vehicle - and without breaking down each time you take it out

The brakes, suspension, steering and entire electronics will also be upgraded to ensure it goes, stops and rides like a modern vehicle - and without breaking down each time you take it out

The brakes, suspension, steering and entire electronics will also be upgraded to ensure it goes, stops and rides like a modern vehicle – and without breaking down each time you take it out

The Northamptonshire conversion specialists have been doing the same to classic Jaguars and Bentleys for some years

The Northamptonshire conversion specialists have been doing the same to classic Jaguars and Bentleys for some years

One of the finely-crafted wood cabinets inside the Rolls-Royce EV

One of the finely-crafted wood cabinets inside the Rolls-Royce EV

The Northamptonshire conversion specialists have been doing the same to classic Jaguars and Bentleys for some years

The re-covered leather seats also feature Lunaz Design's own motif stitched into sections of the cabin

The re-covered leather seats also feature Lunaz Design's own motif stitched into sections of the cabin

The re-covered leather seats also feature Lunaz Design’s own motif stitched into sections of the cabin

If your budget doesn’t quite stretch that far, some of the 30 examples Lunaz creates will also be Silver Clouds from the same era, which ring in at a slightly cheaper £350,000.

That’s still a very big chunk of cash for a classic Silver Cloud. Hagerty says a 1961 Sliver Cloud II – in incredibly good condition – would today cost around £58,500, which is six times less than Lunaz’s electric version. 

The Silver Cloud’s cheaper price will partly be down to them having a slightly lower battery spec than the one in the Phantom – an 80kWh pack – but the same projected range on a full charge in excess of 300 miles. 

If your budget doesn't quite stretch that far, some of the 30 examples Lunaz creates will also be Silver Clouds from the same era, which ring in at a slightly cheaper £350,000

If your budget doesn't quite stretch that far, some of the 30 examples Lunaz creates will also be Silver Clouds from the same era, which ring in at a slightly cheaper £350,000

If your budget doesn’t quite stretch that far, some of the 30 examples Lunaz creates will also be Silver Clouds from the same era, which ring in at a slightly cheaper £350,000

he Silver Cloud's cheaper price will partly be down to them having a slightly lower battery spec than the one in the Phantom - an 80kWh pack - but the same projected range on a full charge in excess of 300 miles

he Silver Cloud's cheaper price will partly be down to them having a slightly lower battery spec than the one in the Phantom - an 80kWh pack - but the same projected range on a full charge in excess of 300 miles

he Silver Cloud’s cheaper price will partly be down to them having a slightly lower battery spec than the one in the Phantom – an 80kWh pack – but the same projected range on a full charge in excess of 300 miles

Customers can choose either a fixed-head and drop-head version of the Silver Cloud I, II and III models – all of which will be sourced by Lunaz and meticulously converted.   

Commenting on the creation of the electrified classic cars, Jen Holloway, design director at Lunaz, said: ‘My approach to design is defined by Sir Henry Royce’s philosophy that ‘small things make perfection and perfection is no small thing’. 

‘Together with our clients we work to create relevant expressions of the most significant cars in history. 

‘I am proud to give new purpose to some of the most beautiful objects ever created.’ 

CARS & MOTORING: ON TEST

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