Based in the secluded and off beaten tracks of Norfolk (UK), Qwest’s team of legendary automotive and motor racing designers and engineers have been working for two years on the creation of the world’s first and quickest EV Shooting Brake.
Starting out as so many good things do, QWEST project came about following a chat down at the
local pub in January 2016 where a successful business man who had just bought his second Tesla
Model S, was lamenting its impracticality with a friend and fellow entrepreneur. The impracticalities
lay with carrying his canine buddies. This was due to the shape of the Tesla S, with a standard sloping
roofed hatchback or fastback style, giving almost no head room for his furry best friends to spread
The wish was that the Tesla had an Estate, a proper large estate, a shooting brake, that long lost
vehicle format reserved for the annals of history, reminiscing over Volvos and Peugeots of the past
long before SUV’s and MPV’s ruled the planet. Low enough to get in, but big enough to fit
everything life throws at you, within. No compromises.
The friend, Dr. Dorian Hindmarsh, has been working with the automotive and motor racing sector
for nearly 20 years and knows Norfolk is the place to develop a concept like the world’s first EV
The car is based fully on the Tesla Model ‘S’ car, and the design that was developed had to be complimentary to the muscular stance and style of the base car, but with increased capacity and
access. Jim Router, Qwest’s Engineering Director, is a legend in the automotive world and has been involved with many of the world’s iconic vehicles both for the road and race track, with Le Mans and Supercars just happening to be his bread and butter. Jim was able to develop a uniquely stylish body
section that could be manufactured out of carbon fiber, for strength, durability, weight, and
aesthetics. The swooping roofline and high waistline give rise to the classic Cola bottle profile
emphasised by the bespoke carbon fiber roof finisher named the “Flying Scarf”
Tesla was made aware of this project from the outset and some specific criterions are adhered to, to
maintain support for their unique method of vehicle updates etc.
Roll on 12 months, and QWest Norfolk Ltd is established, and cutting a £90+K Tesla car up with TV’s
and online host Jonny Smith from “FullyCharged” running a feature throughout the project.
The sections of the coach built conversion, including the roof, are manufactured at a specialist
carbon fiber producer CODEM Composites in Huntingdon who traditionally produce F1 components
for leading teams, before being meticulously hand assembled by Qwest’s Skilled engineers
The QWEST carbon fiber body shell is bonded to the Tesla’s Aluminium utilising the latest in aeronautical chemical multi material bonding systems and painted in the client’s choice of matching or contrasting colours with subtle, tantalising glimpses of the carbon fiber weave around the bespoke tail gate opening.
The new larger rear three-quarter glass and specially curved rear roof glass are provided by world leader in automotive glass, Pilkington, securing global coverage for the car’s glazing.
QWest does not currently plan to sell converted cars, but instead to alter client based vehicles in the
art and ethos of the true British coach builder, with bespoke offerings around interior trim and
selected options, of which there are many choices; from teak floors, to napper leather, dog friendly
surfaces, and simple carpets…
The clients of QWest will be able to select interior features to match their lifestyles and pursuits with
some basic appointments for more aqua based sports and activities, with rear section features to
cope with water and ease of handling and storage of associated paraphernalia. There’s an offering
for the country lifestyle, which has a more rugged stance and key body protection, with features to
cater for outdoor activities and country pursuits. And for the more urban user there will be a
standard trim to complement the Tesla original features and fittings.
There is already fully engineered solution for a split carbon fiber tailgate option, which it is envisaged will be requested by a number of clients. As each car has an element of client focused individualism they cannot be rushed, but a typical QSB should take around 10 weeks to craft to its basic form.
Qwest has been on a fantastic journey over the last year and is already looking at the prospects of
engineering other EV and Hybrid vehicle coach building and engineering projects.
For further information, discuss QWEST in more detail, or arrange to review a car please contact us.