Everrati Ford GT40 — The Green Lane
JS – Even I recognise this car. Something of a motoring racing legend – and wasn’t the GT40 star of that Matt Damon film, Ford vs Ferrari?
JT – That’s right, with Christian Bale. The film was actually entitled Le Mans ’66 here and in Europe but fearing the American’s wouldn’t know what or who Le Mans was, the movie was renamed Ford vs Ferrari in the States.
Interesting! It was a great film. Cinema-goers could almost inhale the fumes from that high-octane scrap between Ford and Ferrari, squabbling to claim the most coveted prize in endurance racing.
Ford’s hugely powerful GT40 finally broke Ferrari’s six-race winning streak at Le Mans in 1966, then won the French classic three more times in a row. The turnaround rubbed salt in the wounds of a furious Ferrari boss, Enzo Ferrari, who ungraciously branded Ford vehicles ‘ugly little cars’.
I don’t think you can call the GT40 ugly. However, I’m certain that 7.0-litre V8 engine didn’t offer much to the environment?
No – it was all very different in the 1960s. That said, Oxfordshire based Everrati, has taken the gas-guzzling GT40 to task and created an all-electric version. It’s their third battery conversion of a famous classic car. The other two were a Land Rover and a Porsche 911.
I can spot little difference between this electric version and the original. What’s it like inside?
Well, the centre-mounted rev counter is switched to a retro-look battery monitor, while customers opting for a £528,000 ‘standard’ car can also benefit from air conditioning. Adjustable suspension and a music system are optional.
How much? That’s more than a house. Is it really worth that sort of money?
I think it could be – especially in the all-electric future, when collectors and enthusiasts will be looking for battery-powered fun in a genuine classic.
Is it exactly the same as the original otherwise?
The shell comes from the official US manufacturer of replacement GT40 bodies. The car will fast charge from 20 to 80-per cent in just 20 minutes, while range is restricted to a maximum of 160 miles – or considerably less if you drive it like a Le Mans racer.
Don’t you miss the noise of the original – it was quite a beast?
The complicated exhaust system of the petrol original was affectionately known as the ‘bundle of snakes’. It’s not quite the same with batteries, so Everrati has come up with a solution. Their car will run silently on battery power like any EV, or drivers can indulge in a speaker package that recreates 110 decibels of soul-stirring V8 noise.
Good thinking. Just what you need to create your own Le Mans soundtrack.
Jessica Saunders is Director of Programmes at London College of Fashion, studying for a PhD in sustainable e-textile design.