Steve Cropley: The only EV conversion I love is a vintage Porsche


This week, Steve mulls the prospect of an electric Porker and the underrated joy of renewing club memeberships, before swooning over his new Bentley Bentayga long-termer – and it hasn’t even arrived yet. 

Monday

The current fashion for re-equipping classic cars with electric motors doesn’t sit well with me, although I do make an honourable exception for the Swindon folks who’ve been making city EVs from Issigonis Minis. However, this instinctive dislike of bastardised big-name classics didn’t stop me getting into a serious lather this week when my eye fell on the WEV Coupé, a new, Cornish-built machine with a superb Porsche 356 replica body on an all-new chassis.

This coupé has a higher purpose than simply attracting people who love its lines but can’t afford the real thing: it is ace engineer Neil Yates’ top hat for his ingenious EV skateboard, which is designed to be affordable enough to be built in the tiny numbers the UK’s under-pressure niche vehicle industry will need after 2030. Not too sure exactly how I’ll sneak my latest plan to pay £75k for an electric Porker rep past the bank manager and Steering Committee, but maybe if I announce it now, they’ll get used to the idea.

Tuesday AM

Pinched half an hour of the boss’s time this morning to renew my various club memberships (MAC, BOC, GRRC, VSCC, VMCC and LDMC) and reactivate my competition licence, a handy way to get rid of £600.

This renewals rush occurred because, while reading in bed last night, I noticed that the MAC wants to stage its first evening get-together of 2021 at Shelsley Walsh hillclimb on 4 March, just five weeks’ time.

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The thought of visiting this wonderful place, albeit socially distanced, fills me with determination to be ready to participate. Of course, it’s on a Thursday evening (6pm to 10pm) and I’ll probably be bashing the typewriter, but it still creates an enticing vision of normality.

Tuesday PM

Should I be complaining about work? An exceedingly nice bloke from Bentley has just rung to say that my next long-termer, a Bentley Bentayga V8, arrives on Monday. Since when was Christmas crammed into the back end of January?

Wednesday

Forgive this; there’s very little excuse for one member of the chain gang to write about another. But as you’ll see, I’ve just been at Brands Hatch watching Colin Goodwin (and a 40-strong band of helpers and drivers who Porsche GB brilliantly assembled on his behalf) set 13 new UK electric time and distance records using a pair of Porsche Taycans. The idea came, as many have done over the years, from Goodwin opening his gob and being taken seriously. Quite right, for a bloke who follows through: remember his importation of a Chevy El Camino whose Big Block V8 was rebuilt in the front room (using valve lifters stashed in the sock drawer)? Or his 200mph kit-built RV aeroplane that started with the innocent erection of a garden shed in the back garden? I’m already impatient to hear about his next trick…



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