Electraction Tropicana
front rear

Electraction Rickshaw

Electraction, led by an ex-ford designer called Roy Haynes, bombarded motor shows in London and Chicago with designs for a two-door saloon, a two-seater roadster (called, the Tropicana shown above), a van and a pick-up featuring hefty packs of heavy duty Oldham lead acid batteries and a 7.5bhp electric motor. The strange Rickshaw was the fifth variant (pictures and words courtesy of Matt @ Chase Autos who offered the car for sale on eBay in September, 2004). Like no others, it used a mixture of Vauxhall parts and glass it was aimed at sun drenched holiday resorts or similar ‘contained environments’ where its 88km (55 mile) range and 48km/h (30mph) top speed would be ideal. And if the beating of the sun’s rays became too much, the fringed ‘Surrey’ top at the back could be raised as a handy automotive parasol. ‘Electraction’s marketing director’, said the company in 1977, ‘has the job of holding back the avalanche of potential customers until production gets underway.’ Fond words! Alas, despite relentless promotion, support from the British Trade Development Office, and a merger with famous sports car firm AC, Electraction seems never to have sold any cars at all- like so many other British electric hopefuls, dashed by they markets total indifference to the concept of plug in motoring. The prototype Rickshaw ended up abandoned headfirst in an overgrown ditch in Thames Ditton, Surry, from where it was rescued by a local collector.


© and Copy, 1996-2004:

Paul Negyesi npaul@hu.inter.net