Stuart Mills was approached in 2008 by a major battery company to look at the feasibility of developing an electric race series. Various vehicles were considered and initially an electric motorcycle was developed, however, the client favoured the second prototype which utilised off the shelf go-kart components. A chassis was designed and fabricated that not only incorporated conventional steering, braking and axles from an F1 style go-kart, but also accommodated a 38 hp electric motor, controller, and a 72 volt 40 amp hour battery pack. Gear ratios were selected and experimented with until the final system was arrived at which limited the top speed to 50 mph but retained brisk acceleration. The vehicle was entered for the Santa Pod Alternative Fuel Race in 2009 and a victory can be claimed, although only partial, as it was the only one of its type. It recorded a standing quarter mile time of 21 seconds but reached its maximum speed of 50 mph in less than 4 seconds.
Now seen as ahead of its time, fast forward to 2018 and electric karts are becoming common place.
The Rocket was designed for a 100 ft lb of torque from the 1.6 Focus engine. Lots of builders used far more power seemingly without issue but the MKII was designed to be stronger. Rocket also suffered from straight line sensitivity, even worse with a quick rack. This issue is also address in MKII. Success of Excoet which is far cheaper and easier to build has meant that Rocket has now been replaced by Exocet.
Scooters have been converted to bike power but never before has anyone made a bike in the style of a scooter. This one off creation used a powerful motorcycle engine from a Suzuki Bandit 1200 in a bespoke chassis with a grp body in the style of a 60’s scooter.
Possibly the fastest scoot ever with its GSF 1200 engine
This Range Rover based kit car with a bespoke chassis and grp body, lighter, taller and less front and rear over hangs than the donor vehicle. Rear engine was a great idea for those flying off ramps and impacting down hard. The weight shifted to the rear helped protect the front suspension and steering.
The first car ever built by designer Stuart Mills was a vehicle inspired by the Ford model T. This GRP shell with stainless steel radiator housing was mounted on a bespoke chassis. It featurered steering and front suspension from a Triumph Herald and an engine and gearbox from an MG Magnette
A 5 door long wheel base Range Rover Classic was relieved of its roof. It was made into a pick up truck. A very early example of car wrap, now quite common but at the time almost unheard of. Silver vinyl with loud graphics to match the modified, loud exhaust note from the V8 engine.
A microlight air craft manufactured by Stuart Mills in 1994 with a Rotax 582 twin ignition 2 stroke petrol engine.
Designed specifically with the modern camper van in mind,
no nod to the past or teardrop in sight but a new concept, a contemporary mini
caravan that has so many uses. Build your own if you fancy a DIY trailer.
Off for the weekend? Where do you put the bikes, and what
about the BBQ, the folding sunbeds the picnic table and gazebo?
What about security and the advert to criminals if you
strap your kit on a van rack and leave it all on show, how about hiding it in a
secure GRP shell?
More space and less inconvenience, when you pitch up and
set up you can leave the Exopod attached or drag it around the side, it is so
very easy to pull, this is amazingly light, no wonder it does not decrease your
MPG, it only weighs 150kg!
Bed or table in the van? Don’t worry, leave the table set
up for breakfast and sleep in your towable bedroom. Plenty of room for 2
adults, 4 feet wide, 7 feet long and room to sit up in bed without banging your
head! Door opening is 28” wide and 35” high.
towing, guaranteed, notice the clever chassis design that wraps itself around
the outside allowing the wheel hubs to create a very low centre of gravity. We
tested this at 80mph and even during fairly violent manoeuvres she kept steady,
steady as a rock.
Full kit excluding wheels tyres (to be supplied by customer to match tow
vehicle) £2895 plus VAT.
Fully built and IVA tested, ready to tow away (excluding wheels/tyres)
£3999 plus VAT.
fully welded and drilled chassis, suspension, hubs bearings grease caps,
nuts, bolts, washers, pair of LED light clusters, cable and plug, tow hitch,
jockey wheel, wings, wing stays, 18mm ply floor, pair of polycarbonate side
windows, high quality UV stabilised GRP body in choice of 10 colours.
Powder coated chassis choice of colours £285 plus VAT.
Anti slip rubber floor sheet £180 plus VAT.
Roof vent colour matched in GRP £45 plus VAT.
Ask your local VW Transporter dealer for a fully kitted out
unit, the only limit is your imaginations, chose a colour for the chassis and a
colour for the grp body, a mattress and maybe even interior wall lining, or
maybe it the ideal place for the dog in which case you may choose carpet or
matting for the floor.
The track day focussed EXOBLADE. A name that relates to
it’s EXOskeleton chassis and the use of a Fire Blade engine. The whole dry car
only weighs just a smidgeon over 400kg so power to weight ratio is a huge, the
demo car is fitted with a power commander that has it’s bhp lifted from 178
standard to 202 which according to my math is a whopping 500 bhp per
Grip is supplied courtesy of a set of RRR’s and weight is kept in check
with the FOX wheels. Seats are carbon fibre from Tillett and brakes are of
course alloy, these are Wilwood. Shocks, well of course they are alloy and kept
out of the airstream with pushrod rears and seesaw fronts, linking to the
No reverse on this one but is offered if required. So too is an MSA spec
roll bar if the customer wishes to show a clean set of heals to other bike
engined cars in a race. Body work is absolutely minimal and that aggressive
front end is, well just menacing, it shouts “get out of my way or I will
penetrate”! Prices are not available yet as the prototype has not been fully
tested and the guys at MEV will only offer what they consider to be a perfected,
tested and proven product
The Rocket and Trike (tR1ke) designs were successful but I wanted to design a car with the ultimate balance. This was made possible by careful positioning of the tank the battery and radiator but most of all the engine. This was placed where we would normally expect to see a passenger. The engine was orientated with the four cylinders running east west and a drive shaft took the power to the rear mounted differential. Atomic was a drivers car, no room for non paying passengers, this was the perfect track day toy/weapon.
A great car to have fun with but no takers for racing and very low sales figures resulted in ceased production at MEV and the project was sold on.
This is a real fun trike. When Stuart Mills was commissioned to design this vehicle he discovered that many attempts from various manufacturers had been made to produce a similar vehicle. He invented and patented a tilting system that is manually controlled by the driver/rider and successfully patented the invention. The object of the exercise was to create a stable safe platform on which to perform motorcycle type manoeuvres. The engine was installed behind the driver in the non tilting section driving a differential to the rear wheels. Particular attention was paid to the rear suspension geometry, and a double unequal length wishbone set up was adopted with anti roll bar fitted. An automatic transmission was specially developed so that the driver’s feet are used only for tilting and not gear changing. A motorcycle type twist grip throttle was fitted to the remote type handlebars with two brake levers, one for front and rear. The picture shown is of the grey wooden pattern in part tilt/turn mode. The vehicle was then dismantled to enable moulds to be taken from the pattern to produce the GRP bodywork.
Not a Rocket but V8 power with a difference, we fitted the axles upside down to reverse the rotation and then put the engine in the back to allow for very short front and rear overhangs, a much lighter body and chassis and a greater ground clearance. Fantastic balance and traction off road but not a strong seller due to soft styling approach. An interesting kit car design to build that was imaginative but the market demanded a more macho style. Manufacturing ended.
Developed prior to the Rocket this was a cross between a buggy and a super-car with a V6 3.0L engine and trans-axle driving the rear wheels. A concept that found little interest when offered to market and so it was quickly withdrawn. It was novel though not only due to it’s imaginative use of Ford Mondeo power located midships but also the centre driver position with a passenger seat either side. It had a very low screen base line which made the screen look oversized but was actually only quite small and taken from a Mazda MX6.
A unique kitcar from MEV Ltd
The R2 was developed from the outset to be aerodynamic, unlike the Rocket, it’s narrow body was achieved by overlapping the seats which created a narrow cockpit with staggered seats. It was originally intended for Ford Mondeo running gear but was later sold to a lithium battery manufacturer who used it as a test mules. It was fitted with a 190BHP electric motor with huge torque.
It was back in 2001 when I became inspired to develop an exoskeleton kit car, I have Harley Davidson to thank for their pre-launch promotional material describing their forthcoming V-Rod as “having the engineering on show in a minimalist design concept. The chassis being a prominent feature of style, a statement, not something painted black and hidden beneath the tank”.
I was the first to import a V-Rod to the UK and I still love it to this day, (which is lucky as all I had seen prior to parting with money was a picture), although I prefer driving kit cars of course, that’s the right answer!
By the end of 2006 MEV had developed and been building a prototype exoskeletal car, and in 2007 it became clear that this was going to be a runaway success, by the end of 2009 had supplied around 150 kits.
The name Rocket came about as I had finished a few laps on our test track in a prototype and shouted “it goes like a Rocket”.
Strangely despite us using the name Rocket since 2006 the Light Car Company managed to slip in a registration for the trade mark Rocket in 2008 but are powerless to stop us using it due to our historical use.
We carried out one off modifications to some kits including the introduction of building with alternative power plants such as Honda, ST170’s, Volvo 5 pot and even a C-Max diesel which had so much torque it started to tear the rear wishbone mounts off!
Another one off was for Smarts-R-Us Ltd in Nottingham and was named Zonta, featuring a Smart car engine, they offered it as a kit but it did not take off. Our desire to develop other kits meant we had to shed some of our work load and so we sold a licence to Smarts-R-Us Ltd to be manufacturer the Rocket, they ran into financial difficulties, ceased trading and then formed Road Track Race Ltd (RTR Ltd), MEV agreed to transfer the Rocket manufacturing licence. They ceased trading early 2015.
The Sonic was introduced in answer to kit car customer demands for a Rocket style car but with more weather protection. It was based on a Ford Focus but the power plant was re located to the rear of the car. The contemporary style was a result of forming the ply pattern over a Rocket chassis, hence the long slow curves to the sides. It was pitched as a modern alternative to the old Lotus/Caterham/Westfield 7 lookalikes.
The Missile was a cross over car, part exoskeleton and part grp bodied. Based loosely on the Rocket It was developed from the ground up as an EV kit car, utilising a modern AC 3 phase brush-less motor power by sealed lead acid batteries. It had a range of 50 miles and was electronically limited to 50 mph and with a smooth throttle response to save energy.It also had regenerative brakes which helped charge the batteries when off the throttle.
This was to be sold as a kit car for home builders but did not have demand.
The trike or as it was known tR1ke due to it’s Yamaha R1 engine was a reverse layout to enhance stability. Power to weight ratio was enormous compared to the Rocket, these things could fly off the line in dry weather. Driver skill is need to concentrate when turning left without a passenger as the balance is compromised. Described as a motor bike with 3 wheels.
MEV did not carry out full design of this vehicle. A mock up of a chassis was made and tacked together, it was completed and sold by a Company that no longer exist.
Higher power versions were considered but traction through the rear wheel is the limiting factor.
An electric trike that is available in plan and info form only. Never sold a s a kit but often sold a s a build guide to create your own DIY EV. Powered by a 72 Volt brushed DC motor and carrying 6 40 Ah batteries, it had a range of 25 miles and a top speed of 50 mph. The Moped version has a 4kw motor and a top speed of 28 MPH.
The trade mark Battmobile is registered to Mills Extreme Vehicles Ltd.
It was based on the ubiquitous Mazda MX5 but rather than use a new replacement chassis as we did with Exocet and Rocket it retained the monocoque and was transformed by the addition of a full set of GRP panels. The doors were capped to hide there identity and the rear end was a separate clam shell. At the front a full nose clam was attached but it retained the bonnet form the MX5 with slightly modifications. All in all a very successful design but one which did not take well in the market place.
The Superlight was based on the MEV X5 but had a re styled rear end and no roof. It was inspired by the MX5 superlight concept but was also went a step further than the MEVX5 build process in that it had a replacement lightweight space frame chassis. This meant rusty MX5’s could be used as donors and the kit build resulted in a very light car, hence the name. Unlike the Rocket this car was aerodynamic but didn’t sell well at all.
The Eco-Exo trike was designed from the start with fuel economy in mind. MEV are well known for powerful cars like the Rocket but this engine and auto transmission was form a Suzuki Burgman scooter and offered 250 or 400 cc variants. The low C.O.G and narrow width with it’s tandem seating allowed it to move efficiently through the air. Not a great seller and so production came to a halt, there are many owners who still enjoy their Exo-Exo’s and we hear stories of them covering huge miles in relative comfort all over the world.
The Mevabusa was a development of the MEV tR1ke. Basically the rear end was modified to take a diff and double wishbones each side for suspension. Powered by a Suzuki Hayabusa engine, this lightweight machine found few owners and did not sell well. Limiting factor was the clutch as these were designed for bikes not cars. Similar to the Rocket and therefore production ended at MEV in 2010.
This crazy offering was based around a Chevy V8 and was tuned to over 400 bhp. It’s lightweight chassis and slimline grp body were a perfect combination as a track day weapon. It looked awesome on track but the cost to build was high and so it became a one off and never reached production. Fairly heavy with that lump up front compared to the Atomic and Sonic but a real dream to drive with that sound track bubbling away.
The Charger is a modified blast from the past, a crazy car from the 80’s with gull wing doors. It was based on a VW Beetle chassis so it did not require an IVA test. It was classed as a conversion and I was indeed converted, out went the old air cooled engine and in it’s place is a 30 KW electric motor with a lithium yttrium battery pack. Charging is from a home brewed 110v building site transformer and a MEV (BMS) battery management system. Top speed is 90 mph, not Rocket like but fast enough.
Styling was based on a MEVX5 nose that was grafted on to replace the shovel style original front.
Mevtser, a Rocket with contemporary design styling cues yet closely related to the Locost 7 approach in that it is a traditional layout, front engine, rear wheel drive. We have Mazda to thanks for selling almost one million MX5’s, a perfect donor car for MEVster. Available with GRP roof panels and rear storage if the optional fuel tank was installed. The kit proved to answer the requirements of those that had asked us but fell short of being sustainable due to low volume sales figures.
The Replicar is a low cost and easy to build kit, and can certainly stand proud at any Aston Martin event as a homage to the original.
The Replicar has a bespoke fully triangulated space frame chassis covered with a grp (gelcoat coloured) body, doors, bonnet and rear cover panels. The donor car is a Mazda MX5 which can be bought for £200-£500. You can look for an MOT failure with a V5 as normally the sills have rotted and you don’t need those.
The build of this kit requires no welding or specialist skills, it merely requires the unbolting of the MX5 monocoque which is then replaced by MEV’s bespoke chassis. We don’t take the engine out or the gearbox, we just change what is around it.
With plenty of help available from us and from our active and helpful MEV Owner’s Forum, you will never be alone when you build a MEV, and once you have finished there are plenty of places to go and meet up and have some fun with other MEV owners.
The MEV Replicar is a low cost, easy to build kit and is a real show stopping car.
Replicar has a lightweight fully triangulated space frame chassis, built to the highest standards and approved by our structural engineer. It is so much stiffer than the MX5 body shell.
Donor cars can be a 1.6 or 1.8 Mk 1 Mk 2 or Mk 2.5 with VVT engine. There are a huge range of upgrades available on the market to tune your ride. Anything from a set of track brake pads to a full blown supercharged kit to boost your 1.8 engine to 250bhp. Then it will go like a Rocket. All MX5’s have front and rear adjustable tracking and camber so you can tune the handling to suit the road or the track. You can also fit after market shock absorbers with adjustable damping and a choice of spring rates and limited slip diffs are available, in fact quite common.
If you like the idea of joining a race series, we can manufacture an MSA spec roll bar for racing. Standard cars can accommodate drivers from 5’ to 6’3” and there is generous width for large boned drivers too!
The parts retained from the donor car, married together with the Replicar kit will give you everything you need to build your kit.
This means you retain the sub frames, engine, radiator, fuel tank, all the suspension components, steering rack, steering column, brakes, transmission, exhaust system, wiring loom and engine management system, instrument binnacle, gear shift, handbrake and cables, seats and wheels (unless you choose grp ones or buy upgraded wheels). Your kit will come with bespoke chassis, alloy floor, alloy for front bulkhead and rear bulkhead and front centre tunnel (rear centre tunnel is part of the chassis), grp body, doors, bonnet and boot cover, p clips, edge trim, bolt pack to secure chassis to sub frames, and rivets for floor.
The parts from the MX5 which you don’t need, for example, doors, boot lid, seats, wings, wing mirrors, rear light clusters, soft top etc. can be sold on Ebay and doing this will significantly reduce your final build cost.
Designed and built to replace the Rocket kit car as it is much easier and cheaper to build. Builders don’t have the daunting task of removing an engine and all the associated parts, or having to use alternative suspension components, it all stays in situ. The builder is merely removing the MX5 monocoque and replacing it with the MEV Exocet chassis. This new approach to kit car building provides a quick, modern, lightweight car based on the ubiquitous MX5.
The MEV Exocet is the lowest cost, easiest to build and fastest selling kit car in the world. It shows off its exoskeleton chassis and minimalist grp panels, it’s a real head turner, a blast to drive.
With its exoskeletal chassis and lightweight grp panels the Exocet boasts a massively improved power to weight ratio as the MX5 is 50% heavier! Buying an MX5 donor is easy, there is plenty of choice and typically a donor can be bought for £200-£500. An MOT failure with a V5 is fine as it is usually the case that the sills have rotted and they are not required.
The added bonus of the use of the MX5 is the demand for parts that you don’t need. Builders finish up with a free donor once they have sold a few spares from the donor. With plenty of help available from MEV and from the very active and helpful MEV Owner’s Forum, you will never be alone when you build a MEV, and once you have completed it, there are plenty of places to go and meet and have some fun with other MEV owners.
The Exocet has a lightweight tubular fully triangulated space frame chassis, built to the highest standard and approved by our structural engineer. Donor cars can be a 1.6 or 1.8 Mk 1 Mk 2 or Mk 2.5 with VVT engine. There are a huge range of upgrades available on the market to tune your ride. Anything from a set of track brake pads to a full blown supercharged kit to boost your 1.8 engine to 250bhp. All MX5’s have front and rear adjustable tracking and camber so you can tune the handling to suit the road or the track. You can also fit aftermarket shock absorbers with adjustable damping and a choice of spring rates and limited slip diffs are available.
If you like the idea of joining in the Exocet race series (known as MX150R’s) we can manufacture an MSA spec roll bar for racing. Standard cars can accommodate drivers from 5’ to 6’3” and there is generous width for large boned drivers too!
The parts retained from the donor car, married together with the Exocet kit will give you everything you need to build your kit except for the lighting set. This means you retain the sub frames, engine, radiator, fuel tank, all the suspension components, steering rack, steering column, brakes, transmission, exhaust system, wiring loom and engine management system, instrument binnacle, gear shift, handbrake and cables, seats and wheels (unless you choose grp ones or buy upgraded wheels).
Your kit will come with a bespoke chassis, alloy floor, front bulkhead panels and front centre tunnel (rear centre tunnel is part of the chassis), PVC side panels and rear bulkheads, grp panels, brake pipe, p clips, edge trim, bolt pack, to secure chassis to sub frames, and rivets for floor. Even self tap screws are included! The parts from the MX5 which you don’t need, for example, doors, boot lid, bonnet, wings, wing mirrors, rear light clusters, soft top etc. can be sold on Ebay and doing this can significantly reduce your final build cost.