THIS is the car that Jamie McCartney built... the young experimental artist from Brighton has turned an old smoke belching East German Trabant, the most polluting car ever, into a car with no carbon "tyre"print whatsoever – unless towed away by a motoring rescue organisation.
Car-bon Miles debuts on Saturday in the Manchester Art Car parade, but pedals into Blackpool, clad in funky lighting, solar panels, neon tubes, and chasing LEDs, for the UK’s first Illuminated Art Car Parade for the Festival of Light on October 21.
Jamie explains: “Me and my tireless engineer James Fleming will be the pedal power. We’re now known as pedal heads rather than petrol heads.
“It’s the 50th anniversary of the Trabant, and using humour to attract attention is my way of getting the public to consider the impact of cars on our environment, health and future.
“In simple terms, Car-bon Miles is a real road car converted to pedal power. Stripped of the engine, tank, gear box, back seats etc, in order to save weight, she is pedalled by two people.
“This contraption was inspired childhood memories of my pedal car and the foot-powered cars in the Flintstones, Wacky Races and Bugsy Malone.
“Imagine my delight when I found this car, which still had its old German licence plates, beginning with the letters ‘ART’. It was fate.
“I’m delighted to be returning to Blackpool. My last trip was with a very lovely girl who I probably should have married. We had a fun and cuddly evening on Blackpool beach.
“As an artist with a Brighton studio by the sea, it’s great to have the opportunity to exhibit in another of Britain’s great seaside towns.”