Before the Geneva Motor Show, we couldn't figure out much about the new British company called Eadon Green, nor its first (and possibly only) product, the Black Cuillin. Of course what was labeled by the press as "some sort of a Morgan competitor" has no intention of luring away Morgan customers. Instead, the Black Cuillin is one man's extra-long-wheelbase art deco dream with a modern V12 drivetrain. Twenty-two years after the Bugatti-inspired Chrysler Atlantic concept car, this is a private attempt at creating something similar, perhaps, to what Daimler is trying to do with its Mercedes-Maybach 6 Concept. But unlike the daydream electric Mercedes, this one burns premium gasoline.
"Project FE57" was first inspired when founder Felix Eaton was watching Agatha Christie's Poirot on TV. When the young shopfitting designer laid eyes on the , he fell in love with the shape immediately (the car's, not Mr. Hastings'). But after doing his research on the Talbot Lagos, Delages and Delahayes of the 1930s, Eaton came to the conclusion that, while beautiful, these cars are not only rare and ridiculously expensive, but also hopelessly useless as modern daily drivers. And since he couldn't find a similarly stunning car to buy today, he decided to make his own.
Six month ago, the company started out as Eaton. Then, the name had to be changed to Eadon due to an existing trademark, with Felix deciding to add his grandmother's maiden name, Green, as well. Don't ask where the name Black Cuillin came from, but the long wheelbase and the considerable curb weight was all part of Eaton's original idea—he believes small and light cars are jerky, while weight can bring the benefit of having a quiet, refined ride. As for the length, Felix says anything shorter would start to make the Black Cuillin's elegant roofline "look humpy instead of delightful."
Eadon Green's sole product should offer refinement and beauty all in one package, sort of like a Maybach Exelero did in 2004 (if you fancied its polarizing design). Felix's original intention was to produce just one car for himself, which the newly-founded company did after bringing in some CAD experts from the car industry—and finding a V12 platform over which to drape the new body.
Eadon Green's running prototype has a full carbon fiber body, though for a limited run of cars, they would like to switch to aluminum. Felix says fixing a hand-built aluminum body should be easier around the globe than dealing with broken composites. The underpinnings should be serviceable too, since the V12 and the chassis comes from a "high-end European manufacturer." Aston Martin's Lagonda platform? BMW through Rolls-Royce? Mercedes-Benz? Since the show car was just a full-sized shell, I couldn't find out.
Either way, the Black Cuillin is said to be production ready, meaning that the show car is the final shape satisfying all the legal requirements, and the prototype "drives very nicely." With the engineering part done, Felix brought the car to Geneva to put it in the history books and see if anybody likes it enough to invest in the tooling for the aluminum cars. He says it's going to be expensive even if five or10 people decide to buy one, but if nobody agrees with him that it's beautiful, it can remain his personal one-off carbon fiber luxury coupe.
Like it or not, just try to look at it as a specific version of art deco perfection that might come back in vogue in the 2030s—only this one arrived more than a decade early.