Radford was once a luxury coachbuilder in the mid-20th century before gradually disappearing from view. The name was revived, however, by a team that included Jenson Button and Ant Anstead, with the Radford Lotus Type 62-2 the new company’s flagship product. This week, Radford announced that the limited edition sports car will have a bespoke interior designed in collaboration with luxury watch maker Bremont to complement the vehicle’s sleek retro styling.
The aim was to adopt the lightweight ethos of the Lotus brand as the car is based on an Evora platform and is inspired by the original Type 62 racer. For this purpose, a lot of carbon fiber is used from the A-pillars to the headliner to the floor, which offers a modern aesthetic that is both sports car-friendly and high-end feeling.
The design is meant to keep drivers comfortable and focused as they stretch the legs of the car, which comes with a 430-horsepower supercharged V6 in classic guise shared with the Lotus Emira. The Radford Gold Leaf models are increased to 500 hp. In the meantime, the limited edition of twelve John Player Special models is being equipped with an improved compressor that takes up to 600 hp on the flywheel.
Bremont’s influence can of course be felt strongly in the design. Nick English, Bremont co-founder, takes pride in the company’s work on the interior. “We are delighted to have been asked to design a beautiful mechanical rally timer with stopwatch and clock for the interior of this car, all exquisitely designed in the UK, just like the Radford Lotus Type 62-2 itself,” said English dual dials are big, bold, and bold, and unmistakable wherever they stand out on the dashboard.
Looking back at the past, Radford Design Director Mark Stubbs wanted to pay tribute to the brand’s history. “I always wonder what would Harold have done?” Stubbs said, referring to the original company’s owner, Harold Radford. “We want it to be still a Lotus Type 62-2, but with expert craftsmanship and the best available materials that don’t take away from a lightweight sports car driving experience,” adds Stubbs.
To achieve this goal, much of the interior has machined, milled and turned surfaces on metal parts that give the car a handcrafted, high quality feel. The manual transmission receives an exposed linkage for the gearshift lever with lots of shiny metal parts and the dashboard carries a number of powerful toggle switches.
As the driver’s primary interface with the road, the steering wheel itself is beautifully simple, a three-spoke design with a bold R for Radford right in the middle. It is paired with clean, simple controls so as not to detract from the vehicle’s puristic character. The seats, meanwhile, are real racing shells, complete with belts and embossed metal plates with the Lotus word mark.
While the design is primarily meant to be reminiscent of the era of the original Lotus Type 62, the technology has actually advanced. There’s a main digital display in front of the steering wheel, and instead of the traditional rear and side mirrors, cameras and screens do the job. There is also a magnetic phone dock with wireless charging, but this can be deleted for drivers who want an “uninterrupted” driving experience.