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The VW "bug platform" made early Speedster and other replicas economical and easy to create.  So far EV replicas have been a retrofit of an electric motor, controllers and batteries.  What if there was a universal/standard "EV platform" that low volume producers could utilize without needing to know all the EV tricks/trials/tribulations?

Good article on 356 EV Coupes being developed in UK.

This EV Platform is Designed to Help Low-Volume Automakers (

watt electrical company

1957 CMC Classic Speedster

    in Ft Walton Beach, FL

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@Robert M Thanks for that article, filled in some knowledge gaps for me. I LIKE that Spyder replacement trussed frame, now that's a backbone!

My friend Mike is doing an Elan up right now, he bought a semi-ratty one and got a new chassis for it. The existing backbone was cracked but beyond repair. He's repairing all the cracked and missing fiberglass. His repairs and body work are REALLY nice. The motor is almost ready for assembly with respect to machine work being done. The rubber donut inner CV joints have been upgraded with regular CV joints.

They're no smaller than a Spyder inside and out. I like it. A lot.


@dlearl476 posted:

I loved my brothers (Elan)...

...Despite what they say, a Gen1 Miata is only about 8/10ths in comparison.

Amazingly, the Miata (a real featherweight in most people's minds) weighed eight hundred pounds more than an Elan.

The Miata was a respectable 2100 pounds, but the Elan was only 1300 !

A friend's brother had one, so I got a few rides. I think that car must have been the source of the original 'handles like a go-cart' analogy. I later owned a gen 1 Miata. If I recall, the engines in the two cars made about the same power, but shaving 800 pounds does affect acceleration and handling somewhat.


After my Elan experience, I so wanted a Miata, I read everything I could about them. I remember a R&T article that mentioned that the Mazda engineers spent 800 hours on the Elan exhaust note alone.

The closest I ever got to one was renting them on several occasions when the expense account and rental availability aligned. Nicely, twice it was when I was doing the Bolshoi Academy shows in Vail.

@Sacto Mitch - I knew old Elans were light. I had no idea they were 1300 lbs. That's the very embodiment of Mr. Chapman's "simplify, add lightness" ethos. It's really, really cool.

However, I'm pretty sure the entire exercise would be lost on me (a corn-fed pipefitter trying desperately not to weigh an eighth of a ton).

Where the guy who said, "complicate, add horsepower"? That's the guy I need to find.

Last edited by Stan Galat

BITD, the line between kit car and small manufacture was often blurred. Another great candidate for a Body-on-Skateboard EV classic would be a Turner.

Originally a ladder frame with various Triumph, Ford UK bits and powered by everything from BMC 950cc to Ford 105e’s and IIRC, a few Coventry Climax twin cams, and available as a kit here and in the UK.

Best of all?  I doubt there would be any licensing problems as the company had been defunct for decades.


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