You may soon see what appears to be a Volkswagen Bus or 1970s Dodge Charger cruising on a lake, but it won’t be driving on water. It will be part of a new line of products called Floating Motors.
Italian freelance automotive designer Pierpaolo Lazzarini of Lazzarini Design Studio, in partnership with Italian watercraft builder Jet Capsule S.r.L., is creating restored floats, or resto-floats, based on classic car designs. The car’s design is copied, then built of fiberglass and/or carbon fiber. The resto-float is retrofitted with a floating hull and a gas or electric motor. The proportions and sizes of the original car are respected in the design of the watercraft, and the construction using advanced materials ensures durability in harsh conditions.
There are currently two versions of the classic Fiat 500 (a catamaran version and a hydrofoil version), a version of the original Mini Cooper, a version of the Jaguar E-Type, and a version of Porsche’s classic 550 Spyder. Floating Motors plans to develop resto-floats based on the design of the Mercedes-Benz SLS, the VW Bus, and more. Custom orders will also be available. The watercraft will range in length from 3 to 3.5 meters up to 7.5 meters.
Three types of hulls will be available – catamaran, conventional, or foil. The VW bus Floating Motor, for instance, will feature carbon fiber pontoons. Five models will be available with Mercruiser outboard motors providing between 40 and 240 horsepower depending on the model. Zero-emission motors will also be available with single or twin Torqeedo electric engines providing from 20 to 270 horsepower. A variety of suspension set-ups will also be available.
The company is raising funds now to build molds and prototypes, and the new models will be introduced within the next two years.