Luxury Lifestyle

Sutton Bespoke creates super-luxury version of the classic British black cab

The Sutton VIP Class LEVC takes incognito luxury travel up a notch.

Photos courtesy of Sutton Bespoke

When you can travel to England again, you might want to consider traveling in style in this discreet black cab. Though it is likely to blend in with much of the classic cab landscape, Sutton Bespoke has taken the cab from traditional to super-luxurious with some key modifications.

Known as the Sutton VIP Class LEVC, the taxi is based on the heralded LEVC TX platform. It's a next-gen, low-emissions black cab, which means that it can operate in London's Ultra Low Emissions Zone without having to pay a pollution tax.

Sutton VIP Class LEVC exterior doors The black cab looks relatively traditional on the outside, but the interior is unique.Photos courtesy of Sutton Bespoke

The Sutton VIP Class LEVC taxi has an interior that has been completely redesigned from the traditional black cab setup. Its rear seats are angled for comfort and covered in Sandalwood leather with Alcantara trim. Instead of rubber flooring, the cab features high-quality thick-pile carpet. Hand-crafted wood veneers adorn the door trims.

Above the passengers' heads is a panoramic roof. Ambient lighting can be changed to the color of the passengers' choosing.

Just because it's functional doesn't mean that the cab is lacking high-tech features. It includes haptic climate controls, an upgraded stereo system with Bluetooth connectivity, a TV tuner with Apple TV, and a Sony PS4 games console. Between the rear passengers there is an armrest complete with cupholders, and behind that a refrigerator.

Sutton VIP Class LEVC interior driver The interior of the vehicle is adorned with Alcantara.Photos courtesy of Sutton Bespoke

Driver and passengers are separated by a retractable screen. A fully electrically adjustable leather seat and a state-of-the-art digital instrument cluster ensure the driver remains comfortable during prolonged stints at the wheel. Soft-close doors can also be specified.

A subtle two-tone paint job has been applied to the exterior of the model. It features the iconic black taxi paint for the lower portions and Ferrari's Grigio Silverstone above.

Sutton VIP Class LEVC interior doors Doors open wide and seating is at an angle for additional comfort.Photos courtesy of Sutton Bespoke

The taxi sign on the roof will remain to preserve the iconic silhouette of the vehicle, albeit with the 'TAXI' lettering replaced by 'VIP'. The price of the vehicle will be in the region of £100,000 (excl. VAT) for business buyers, or £120,000 incl. VAT for private buyers.

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Nuts & Bolts

 
 

A new run of Jaguar XK engines is available.

Photo courtesy of Jaguar Land Rover

Jaguar Classic is making a new, authentic 3.8-liter engine for the Jaguar sedans and sports cars. The engine was originally fitted to Jaguar models sold in the 1950s and 1960s. This is the first time in 50 years that brand-new XK engines are available.

The new engine line was created to the exact, original specifications with the guidance of Jaguar engineers. It is a direct replacement for the 3.8-liter six-cylinder units originally fitted to the Jaguar XK150, XK150 S, MkIX, Mk2, MkX, E-Type Series 1 and S-Type.

Jaguar Classic XK engine Buyers can buy a replacement engine for their classic car.Photo courtesy of Jaguar Land Rover

Many of these models are desirable classic cars, including the Jaguar D-Type, XK120, and E-Type all recently were voted onto the list of the best British classic cars.

The new engine replaces cylinder block casting numbers C16020, C17567, C17200/1, C19292, C19983, C22290, C20012, and C22250.

To qualify to get an engine, Jaguar Classic requires that the owner of a vehicle must confirm proof of vehicle ownership. Customers can choose to retain the serial number from their original engine block, which will be stamped on the new casting with a an additional asterisk denoting the new block is a replacement item. Alternatively, the new block can be stamped with a new unique serial number.

Last year at SEMA, Jaguar Classic announced that it was reintroducing the original E-Type toolkit after a 50-year hiatus. The owner's toolkit was originally ordered with Series 1 and Series 2 E-type sports cars but hasn't been available since the Series 2 went out of production in 1971. The E-Type toolkit and other parts can be purchased from the recently-launched Jaguar Land Rover Classic online parts shop.

Jaguar Classic XK engine The six-cylinder engine is a faithful replication of the original.Photo courtesy of Jaguar Land Rover

The new 3.8-liter Jaguar XK engine blocks are priced at £14,340 each (approximately $17,914) and come with a minimum 12 months Jaguar parts and accessories warranty and certificate of authenticity, exclusively from Jaguar Classic.

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This 1963 Aston Martin DB4 Series 5 is one of one.

Photo courtesy of Silverstone Auctions

Three vintage Aston Martins will be part of the first Silverstone Auctions sale of the year on March 5-6, 2021. The three models represent some of the rarest Astons in the world. Let's take a closer look.

1963 Aston Martin DB4 Series 5

This car (seen above at the top of the page) is one of just 50 Series 5 DB4 saloons built prior to the arrival of the DB5, and it was one of the last ones off the line. The left-hand drive car retains its original engine and gearbox, and is finished in its original specification of Aegean Blue over White Gold.

The car is well-traveled. It was originally delivered new to California and comes to its new owner with an Aston Martin Assured Provenance document.

If it looks familiar, Bond fans, that's because it was a DB4 Series 5 Vantage that was used in filming "Goldfinger".

1970 Aston Martin DB6 Mk2 Vantage

1970 Aston Martin DB6 Mk2 Vantage

Photo courtesy of Silverstone Auctions

This is one of only 71 DB6 Mk2s that was equipped with the Vantage engine straight from the factory when new. Making it more rare is the fact that it is a right-hand drive saloon with a factory fitted manual gearbox. Those factors make it a one of one.

This chassis has been presented in multiple concours, had several successes with the Aston Martin Owners Club, and has undergone a significant engine overhaul by Aston Martin Works. It's finished in British Racing Green.

1969 Aston Martin DB6 Mk2

1969 Aston Martin DB6 Mk2

Photo courtesy of Silverstone Auctions

Lots of special attention courtesy of Aston Martin Works has made this 1969 DB6 a model worth taking a second look at for enthusiasts looking to invest. A history file of the car detailing all the work done includes notes regarding a full interior retrim, which was conducted at the same factory where the car was originally built.

The model was originally delivered new to Halesowen in October 1969. The car's original Celeste Blue metallic paint job was accompanied by a dark blue Connolly hide interior (bodywork is now finished in dark blue). It was supplied with the optional two front seat belts when new.

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