David Lorenz is a devoted collector of classic cars. He’s also the founder of Lunaz, a fast-growing UK-based EV company – with a difference. He’s been talking to Auto Futures about his goal to make the world’s most beautiful classic cars reliable, sustainable and usable propositions for the future.
“The birth of my first child sharply placed into focus a concern that her generation will not have access to beautiful classic cars. Without doing this, I feared this would be the future she faces. We set a mission to create the very best machine. Electric proved the very best powertrain to achieve this. The name Lunaz, is a tribute to my daughter Luna,” says Lorenz.
He explains that there is a growing demand for electrified classics as cities and governments start making it more difficult to bring ICE classics into their urban centres.
“We really are entering an era where there is sharp focus on personal impact around air quality. Beyond that, we have introduced new clients to classic ownership who have always admired the aesthetics but don’t have the capacity or desire to overcome the well documented issues of reliability and usability.
“Suddenly, we are placing into their hands a car that marries those enormously desirable old world aesthetics and character with the absolute ease-of-use of a modern EV.”
An Intimate Understanding of Classic Cars
Lunaz was founded in 2018. Its HQ is located at the Silverstone Technology Park- a site that’s globally renowned as a centre of innovation. Its technical workshop also stands next to Ferrari’s Corse Clienti race team.
“Lunaz focuses on converting and restoring only the very best expressions of classic motoring. The company is committed to remaining faithful to the beauty of these cars. The founders’ approach to selecting a vehicle for restoration is informed by an intimate understanding of the classic car world and utilises a network built over decades,” says Lorenz.
He tells us how the restoration and conversion process works. It starts with an exhaustive inspection. This information informs decisions on chassis set-up, powertrain packaging and suspension. The internal combustion engine and associated systems are then removed and the chassis is prepared for electrification.
The car is then 3D scanned. This allows engineers to create detailed CAD models to ensure technical perfection in every step of the process.
Traditional coachbuilding and restoration skills are then employed and the car is stripped down to a bare metal shell. Even imperceptible body defects are addressed by hand before the surface finish process begins.
The same approach extends to the interior. However, the in-house design team do make adaptations to integrate modern conveniences such as satellite telecommunications, WiFi, audiovisual entertainment and navigation aids.
The accessories associated with electric powertrains, including battery chargers and DC converters, are then sensitively integrated into the existing design of the car.
“The specifics of Lunaz’s electric propulsion technology is closely guarded, but each classic by Lunaz is designed, developed, engineered and tested in-house using the highest specification modules available for automotive applications,” Lorenz notes.
The Rolls-Royce Phantom and Rolls-Royce Cloud by Lunaz are nearing completion at the firm’s technical base. Following restoration and conversion, the cars will join the Jaguar XK120 in being subjected to an exhaustive period of testing and proving in all conditions and road types.
The very foundations of our mission is to make classic cars a relevant proposition for future generations.
Lunaz is expanding rapidly to keep up with demand but Lorenz says the company is not in the business of chasing volumes.
“Our focus is on creating highly limited and exclusive production runs. Our allocation for 2020 is very almost full for our XK120 and XK140 models in both roadster and coupe body styles. I’d urge anyone considering placing an order to speak to us soon as demand is incredibly strong.”
He adds: “To meet this growth, we are very proud to say that we’ll double a workforce already drawn from the likes of Rolls-Royce, McLaren, Ferrari, Cosworth, VW, Aston Martin and Ford by the end of this year.”
Preserved and Enjoyed
Lorenz tells us that the Covid-19 pandemic may accelerate a desire amongst classic car collectors to look to rebalance their collections for a clean air future.
“We’re pleased to observe extraordinary progress in the growth of the UK EV market. We can only comment on our own market position and say that we are seeing sustained increased interest in an electric future.
“The very foundations of our mission is to make classic cars a relevant proposition for future generations. We are all confirmed classic car lovers and want nothing more than these beautiful cars to be seen, enjoyed and preserved for many generations to come.”
“By addressing the key questions of reliability, sustainability and usability we make classics ownership an enormously desirable ownership proposition for a much larger group,” he concludes.