If you’ve owned or been around classic British cars, you have heard all the jokes about the Prince of Darkness. But banish Lucas from your thoughts, because RBW’s reimagined MGB roadster has very little to do with its ancestors of questionable reliability—and dubious positive grounding. Yes, this is superficially an electrified MGB, but it also isn’t. That sounds like an oxymoron but bear with us.
For one, that’s an MGB shell, yes, but not a vintage one. The RBW Roadsters utilize the reproduction body shells from British Motor Heritage, which are normally used to re-shell the rotted bodies of classic MGBs. Things diverge even further from the classic model under this EV’s skin. For one, the electric motor is located in the rear of the car, cradled in a custom subframe. Meanwhile, a lithium-ion battery pack goes under the hood.
The suspension is unique to the RBW. It’s fully independent at both ends and utilizes coilovers at each corner. There’s regenerative braking, as well as conventional OE-style disc brakes. RBW claims the car has a near 50-50 weight distribution, so that’s a promising sign for the car’s handling characteristics.
While the look is purposefully vintage, the RBW is actually all-new—a combination of custom bits, off-the-shelf modern components, and reproduction items such as the bodyshell. Given the United Kingdom’s increasingly stringent urban polluter tolls, this might be a very attractive option for an emissions-free classic motoring experience.
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RBW will build 30 of the EV Roadsters and claims the powertrain components can also be retrofitted to other classic sports car body shells, including Austin Healeys, Jaguar E-Types, and even vintage Minis. The EV Roadster starts at around $116,000 at today’s exchange rates and will enter production early next year.
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