Button and Anstead rev up Radford with Project 62 mid-engined sports car

by James Mills
19 May 2021 3 min read
Button and Anstead rev up Radford with Project 62 mid-engined sports car
Photos: Radford

Jenson Button and Ant Anstead have revealed details of Radford’s first sports car – and it is based on a little-known racing machine that was built long before either of them were born. Radford will launch ‘Project 62’ as a recreation of the Lotus 62, a relatively obscure racing car with a mid-engined, two-seat configuration.

The pair are resurrecting Radford as a boutique car builder, with a vision to build limited edition cars influenced by iconic models from yesteryear. Former 2009 Formula One World Champion Button summed up the reasoning behind the new homage to the Lotus 62: “For me, a key purpose of Radford is to celebrate iconic automotive moments by bringing them back to life for a new, modern audience. Our first car, Project 62 embodies that ethos to a tee.”

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Anstead reinforced Button’s view: “We are bringing the spirit of Radford back with the Project 62 – which completely embodies the historic attributes of the brand – it is coachbuilt, luxurious and exclusive. The craftsmanship bestowed upon each build and the level of personalisation available position ‘Project 62’ among the best of the British luxury brands.” Time will tell if those claims stand up to scrutiny.

Ant Anstead, Jenson Button and Mark Stubbs with original Type 62

Seen here for the first time, Project 62 is a low-slung two-seater that is clearly influenced by the Type 62 racer. Radford says it is working with Lotus to develop the chassis and hone the driving experience, although it hasn’t revealed details of that platform. Radford told Hagerty that the car will not be based on a particular Lotus platform: “Radford has use of Lotus technologies, meaning it is able to select parts that it wants to use.” The company has not yet revealed which engine will power the rear-wheel drive machine, either.

No prizes for guessing how many will be built; Radford says 62 will be made, all personalised to each customer’s requirements, and each buyer will have the chance to join a Radford track day – in the company of Jenson Button. If he can’t help them perfect their turn-in, apex and exit points, no one can.

Commenting on the approach being taken with the Project 62, Jenson Button, said: “We’re already hard at work developing this car and the driving experience will be different and very special. It’s going to be truly analogue and thoroughly engaging, but with all the refinements that you would expect from a Radford. 

“It will drive like nothing else. There is a purity to driving that is lost in many cars of today. I will ensure we create a driver’s car, a trait that is embedded within the DNA of all Lotus cars.

“With the dynamic development of our car already well underway, we are working hard to ensure we do this car justice, and I can’t wait to put it through its paces on the Radford Track before inviting today’s Project 62 owners to come and do the same.”

Harold Radford founded his eponymous company in 1948 and unveiled its first creation, the Bentley Countryman, to the public at the London Motor Show in 1951. Radford would go on to develop the Aston Martin DB5 shooting brake variant, customised Minis and even the bodywork for the prototype of the Ford GT40.

The company is accepting deposits, telling Hagerty that a £1000 sum will be fully refundable and allows Radford to “start the process at which point Radford will evaluate applications.” At the time of writing Radford was unable to provide Hagerty with details of how much the car would cost, or any further technical information about Project 62.

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  • Tim Engel says:

    Is the Radford Project 62 a 1:1 scale version of the Lotus Type 62? In the above photo, looking back through the windscreen at Jensen Button in the car, it looks larger than I’d expect. My frame of reference is 50 years of owning four Europas, and using them as daily drivers during the snow-free months.

  • peter hughes says:

    Hope they are a lot safer and a whole lot more reliable than contemporary Lotus products…..

  • Art says:

    Is this a street car, or track-only?

  • Adam Miles says:

    The first Tesla roadster was on a Lotus platform…

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