WORDS: ELLIOTT HUGHES | TLCC
Bentley Motors and The Little Car Company have revealed a road-legal 85 percent-scale recreation of the famous 1929 4½ Litre Supercharged Team Car No. 2, dubbed the ‘Blower Jnr’, at Monterey Car Week.
The all-electric Blower Jnr is based on the actual car driven by original Bentley Boy Sir Tim Birkin at the Le Mans 24 Hours in 1929. Team Car No. 2 was acquired by Bentley in 2000, and the marque used it as the template for 12 Continuation models to mark its 100th anniversary in 2019.
Batteries and drive electronics are cleverly concealed in a hidden undertray, while the car’s trademark front-mounted supercharger houses the charging port
The Little Car Company’s miniaturised rendition of Team Car No. 2 measures 3.7 metres long and 1.5 metres wide. It is underpinned by an authentic painted-steel chassis with leaf springs and period-correct friction dampers. Stopping power is provided by Brembo disc brakes at the front and drum brakes at the rear.
On the rear axle, a 15kW (20bhp) electric motor drives the rear wheels. The powertrain’s batteries and drive electronics are cleverly concealed in a hidden undertray, while the car’s trademark front-mounted supercharger houses the charging port.
The 48v electric powertrain allows the car to reach a top speed of 45mph – limited to 25mph in the US due to legislation. The Little Car Company estimates that the Blower Jnr will travel 65 miles on a charge.
Clothing the chassis and powertrain is handcrafted bodywork that’s built in two sections. The rear body structure is manufactured from carbonfibre, but aesthetically mimics the ash frame of the original by being sheathed in impregnated fabric.The louvred bonnet is recreated in aluminium using traditional techniques, and is secured with a pair of leather buckled bonnet straps.
The cockpit provides seating for two adults in a 1+1 layout, and luggage can be stowed in the rear-mounted fuel tank. At first glance, the turned aluminium dashboard appears to be a direct replica of the original, although several changes have been made to accommodate the buttons and switches needed for the electric powertrain.
One example is the fuel-pressure pump, which has been repurposed as a drive-mode selector. Three modes are available, and each increases the power output of the electric motor. The 2kW Comfort mode is the tamest, followed by the intermediary Bentley setting (8kW), with Sport providing the full 15kW.
Forward, Neutral and Reverse are selectable via what would be the ignition-advance lever in the full-size car, while the headlights and indicator controls masquerade as magneto switchgear. The ammeter gauge has also been repurposed to indicate battery charge. There’s a concealed USB charging point, too, and a dual-function display for the sat-nav system and reversing camera.
The Little Car Company has confirmed that the first 99 Blower Jnrs produced will be First Edition Models, adorned with special badging on the bonnet, sill plate and dashboard as well as an engraved numbered plaque. All First Edition Models will be finished in Blower Green over Dark Green Lustrana hide. Other First Edition details include hand-painted Union Flags on each side of the bodywork, period-correct racing numbers and a rope-bound steering wheel.
Blower Jnr production is expected to begin in the second quarter of 2024. Pricing has not yet been disclosed.
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