THE SHOP

November '20

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84 THE SHOP NOVEMBER 2020 I 'm not at all sure that electric-powered automobiles are the ultimate answer we're looking for, but for now, at least, they are a viable alternative to the infernal combustion engine. But, what does someone who doesn't want to drive a cookie-cutter Tesla do—somebody who wants an electric hot rod, for instance? I didn't give the question much thought until I attended Dragstalgia, a nostalgia drag race at Santa Pod Raceway in the UK. In most instances, I'd walk right past the diminutive yellow box, a Pac-Man on wheels. What caught my attention was the punny name, Jonny's Flux Capacitor, and the sponsor, Adrian Flux, an auto insur- ance company. It was clever and catchy marketing that got my attention. The car is actually a mid-1970s British Enfield 8000 that was built as an electric city car. Only a little more than 100 were made between 1973-'76 and they were pow- ered by a 48V 8hp/6kW DC motor that drove the rear wheels. They had a range of 35-55 miles and a top speed of 40 mph—not a real commercial or technological success. Not, that is, until Brit auto journalist Jonny Smith got ahold of one and swapped out the original motor for a twin-series-mounted 9-inch DC racing motor with Helwig Carbon split brushes and silicone insulation rated for 2,000 amps at 170V with a max of 5,500 rpm. Plug-In Classics Spotted at the UK's Dragstalgia, "Jonny's Flux Capacitor" is a mid-1970s British Enfield 8000 up- dated with a twin- series-mounted 9-inch DC racing motor by Brit auto journalist Jonny Smith. ePerformance continues to make inroads. By Tony Thacker

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