A week after showing off its (not so unique) take on the Land Rover Defender, Ares Design has unveiled something a bit more adventurous: the first Tesla Model S convertible. Not only is it topless, it's also now a two-door model, meaning both the Tesla-made structure and its body have been subjected to significant modification to ensure that it doesn't fold up like a house of cards. Naturally, it's one-off commission for an unnamed customer - built to an undisclosed budget.
Ares obviously has form here, but even for it the project must've been quite an undertaking. The Modena team – headed by CEO Dany Bahar – claims to have retained rigidity in the body by bolstering the sills, floor and rear seating area, so there’s apparently no risk of bending the massive battery over speed humps. The original B-pillars and doors have gone with the roof, with new, longer doors and an extended rear body panel in their place, along with a folding soft top.
Ares also added a carbon fibre aero kit, as well as a retrimmed interior featuring new leathers and fabrics, for a cabin with custom-made rear seats. The client went for white leather with orange detailing, if you’re wondering, but opted not to touch the major Tesla interior features. We’re not told which specification of Model S the car is based on, but given that all are pretty rapid off the mark, we’d expect this convertible to be capable of going from 0 to lots of wind in your hair in practically no time at all.
It’s arguably the most significant Tesla Model S modification yet, with the previous shooting brakes – done first by Britain’s Qwest Automotive and then Holland’s Niels van Roij – not requiring any substantial load-bearing modifications. In fact, both of those projects intentionally avoided cutting into any major structural elements, so Ares’ latest undertaking really does stand out even in the world of coachbuilt EVs.
Bahar said of the project: “Our Co-create philosophy allows clients to work side by side with our designers and engineers to create their very own bespoke vehicle, a service that is unique to Ares. This Tesla project is a superb example of this; it was a pure coachbuilding project which we very much enjoy doing and seeing the results of our uncompromising standards."
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