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Images of brand-new, future-focused versions of the iconic Austin J40 pedal car have been released.
The project is a collaboration between well-known automotive artist Stefan Marjoram (C&SC, July 2018) and Burlen, the firm that acquired the J40 parts and spares company from Roy Halford earlier this year.
Since launching the J40 Motor Company this April, as well as a new website, the company has reintroduced previously out of stock J40 parts, added new accessories and more – and these new concepts offer a potential glimpse into the future.
At first glance you might not believe that every panel of the concept is different from the original, but this gentle modernisation of the well-known shape has moved things on.
There are larger wheels and tyres, lower and longer wings, the car’s lines have been smoothed and exaggerated, plus there’s a new grille, bumpers, headlights and an aero screen.
And there are two versions: Sports and Racing (at the top of the page), the latter gaining a side-exiting exhaust and a pair of stripes.
You can view a time-lapse video of Marjoram’s work here.
“This concept starts a new chapter of the J40 story and gives a glimpse into what a new model could look like,” said Jamie Burnett, Burlen and J40 Motor Company Director.
“To take charge of a new-look concept was an honour, but also quite daunting and was a task which needed respect.
“What we present is a true evolution of the world’s famous pedal car and is a concept that shows our future ambition for the brand.
The market for pint-sized classics seems to be booming at the moment, no doubt boosted by the Settrington Cup kids’ race at the Goodwood Revival for Austin J40s.
Both Bugatti and Aston Martin have launched scaled-down versions of classic models, and RM Sotheby’s held an auction dedicated to pedal-powered classics in June.
And just last weekend at the Concours of Elegance was the first Junior Concours, for the best half-scale petrol-, pedal- and electric-powered cars of all ages, where a child-sized version of the Porsche 917K in which Hans Herrmann and Richard Attwood won the 1970 Le Mans 24 Hours took top honours.
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