Starke Revolution Speedster to offer the best of both worlds

Starke Revolution Speedster CS — overhead view. — Starke handout pic via AFP-RelaxnewsStarke Revolution Speedster CS — overhead view. — Starke handout pic via AFP-RelaxnewsPARIS, Oct 10 — US automotive coachbuilder Stärke wants to re-box the Porsche Boxster as a visual homage to the iconic Porsche 356 Speedster — just don't call the finished car a restomod.

Instead, the Stärke Revolution Speedster, which is set to make its global debut on October 20 in Las Vegas, has been dubbed by its creators — father and son team Wade E and Maxwell Morrison — as a restobod.

Because rather than take a 1950s Porsche and update its engine, suspension brakes and steering for the 21st century (and in doing so destroy its value on the collector car market), the company starts with a modern Porsche Boxster that it meticulously re-bodies and re-trims so that on initial inspection, it looks just like a classic Porsche.

The car making its debut later this month is the result of thousands of man hours of development. The body alone took 18 months to perfect, but now that everything is ready, the firm hopes to be able to produce an absolutely bespoke Speedster in 120 days following final design sign off.

Starke Revolution Speedster CS — interior. — Starke handout pic via AFP-RelaxnewsStarke Revolution Speedster CS — interior. — Starke handout pic via AFP-RelaxnewsPrices for the Revolution Speedster CS will start at US$59,950 (RM253,000) and its performance, and creature comforts will be limited to those of the donor car (a 1997-2012 Porsche Boxster, the cost of which is not included in the price).

However, plump for the Speedster Outlaw and things go up a notch. Wider and lower to the ground than the CS, the Outlaw can be specified with Bilstein adjustable coilover suspension, a sports exhaust system, a hand-built, 375hp racing engine and a body formed entirely from carbon fibre rather than fibre glass. However, the engine upgrade alone will add US$40,000 on to the Outlaw's US$79,950 base price. And again, none of those prices factor in the cost of the donor car.

Nevertheless, restobodding is certainly developing as a trend within the higher echelons of the automotive market. For instance, David Brown Automotive in the UK has had huge success with its Speedback GT, a Jaguar XKR convertible with a hand-finished bespoke interior and hand-formed aluminum body reminiscent of an Aston Martin DB5. While over in Italy, Touring is producing coachbuilt classic cars based on the utterly modern Alfa Romeo 8C and Ferrari F12 Berlinetta. Even Rolls-Royce has got in on the act with the Sweptail, a one-off commission based on the Phantom Coupe. And when one considers that prices for the Speedback GT start at £500,000 and that the Sweptail is believed to have cost over US$10 million, the Stärke starts looking like incredible value for money. — AFP-Relaxnews