Why Helm Motorcars’ E-type Series 1 Roadster is Our Restomod of The Moment
Newsflash: it turns out you can improve upon perfection.
If you missed it, Helm is giving the classic E-Type Jag roadster an exquisite redo. Planning a series of 20, the brand completed the first restored car back in 2021. Mirroring the production rate of the Tesla Cybertruck, the second car is now finished and there are some rather gorgeous pics to showcase its efforts.
Helm founder Chedeen Battick doesn’t really like to call them ‘restomods’. Battick told TopGear.com: “The ‘restomod’ name seems a little crude - but this is my thought only. Our cars are genuine restored E-Types with original engines and drivetrains but with an emphasis on improving every aspect such as materials used, power, and build quality. We do not use another brand's engine.”
Indeed Battick and the team don’t really mess with the 4.2-litre units from Series 1 models (first found in the 1965-1967 models), but they make 'em 'race-built'. Contemporary touches – like an electronic fuel injection system, a bespoke alloy handcrafted airbox, silicon hoses and fancier heating and cooling system - help deliver 300bhp, keeping the cars fast and reliable.
The team also restores 90 per cent of the bodywork and parts, including heavily uprated braking systems on the front and rear, fully adjustable suspension and power steering.
The finished product is undeniably more premium than the one the cars had when they first left the factory in the 1960s. Less mass-market and more high net-worth market – Battick reveals that these creations tend to cost around half a mil once taxes have been factored in.
For that kingly sum, the E-Type has a greater level of comfort and convenience than the originals – as you might expect for the price of a family home.
Hand-stitched custom detailing and made-to-order cowhide seat covers are Helm's collaborative approach with leather expert Bill Amberg. Amberg is located near the Helm HQ, like many of the craftspeople whose skills are used to create these fine things. Each car takes its team over 3,800 man hours.
However, this particular example took 6,000 hours. Battick tells us this was due to a "huge number of prototyping firsts, including the hood made with a headlining, reverse parking sensors, automatically closing reverse camera display and automatic gearbox" to name but a few. It being shipped to its new owner in Australia.
Since you can't actually tell any of these modern gadgets things have been worked into the design, there's either mastery or magic at play here. See you again in 2025 when Car Number Three is ready?
The design tenets of classic English racing characterise the leatherwork, with vegetable-tanned black suede and leathers previously used only in luxury residential interiors contrasting subtly and elegantly. The Roadster also comes complete with its own pair of purpose-built Bill Amberg-designed weekend bags, made from soft, lightweight black Italian calf-skin with handmade leather straps: “Casual, spur-of-the-moment travel bags”, as Amberg himself puts it.
Original Article Source: https://www.topgear.com/car-news/retro/check-out-second-instalment-helms-exquisite-e-type-restomod