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Classic cars

The sustainable transformation of classic cars

While people need cars and enjoy driving, there is a compelling argument to find more sustainable solutions. The quest for greener vehicles has only begun. We spoke with Justin Lunny, Founder and CEO of ionic cars about passions, aesthetics and sustainable values in light of the sustainable transformation of classic cars.

Justin Lunny

"Those who love cars actually just want to get in and drive the car. But now if they can do it in a sensitive and ecological way…"

- Justin Lunny

An entrepreneur’s dream

Justin Lunny, a self-described petrolhead, is concerned about the environment, sustainability, and the world his two young children will grow up in. A dreamer, entrepreneur, and engineering buff, Lunny acknowledges that while there are some great electric cars, they do not embody the passion and aesthetics associated with classic cars. And so began his journey of building a business around the revival of iconic cars, but in a way that makes them relevant well into the future. His company, ionic cars, is in the business of restoring old cars and fitting them with electric engines. Ionic is now very close to having their first cars on the road.

From “reversible” heart surgery…

The restoring experts retain as much of the old classic car as possible without diluting its beauty or value. They reconceive and upgrade each vehicle to offer unparalleled luxury, high performance, and zero-​emission electric power. After an elaborate and precise scan and measurement of the car, the company essentially replaces the old engine system with a new electric engine, akin to, in Lunny’s words, “heart surgery.” In case of any buyer remorse, the entire process is reversible.

…to new-age art

For those who may be emotionally attached to the old engine, the company can remove, clean, and return it to the owner. This allows the owner to keep the matching numbers, capability, and history of each car – and display the engine at home or in the office with the newly upgraded car outside. The emotions surrounding classic cars vary, with some aficionados affected most by the roar of the engine. In response to client demand, there is a project to recreate the exact sound of old car engines.

Electric classic cars: The shape of things to come

With most classic cars emitting their own body weight in CO2 in a range of 1,400 to 2,000 miles, it will become more difficult to drive classic cars in the city over the next five to ten years. As it might not be possible to drive a traditional vintage car at all in the future, ionic gives these cars a new lease of life. The volume of advance orders for ionic cars shows that many classic car enthusiasts want to be able to drive with a conscience and without emissions.

Sustainable transportation and the road ahead

Electric classic cars and, indeed, electric vehicles, are just two elements in a wide array of choices in the sustainable transportation space. Solar cars are also emerging as a new technology. But what will lead the auto industry into a sustainable future? The answer lies in regulation and infrastructure, which will both have to change and accelerate. At this point, innovative infrastructure technology seems to be developing very quickly – though the same cannot be said about regulation, at least right now.

Source: “Sustainable Lifestyle Virtual Talk” of June 16, 2020

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