Road-go­ing sofa re­stored to cel­e­brate open­ing of a garage

Classic Car Weekly (UK) - - This Week -

Edd China’s in­fa­mous 1994 Ca­sual Lofa sofa car has been made road-le­gal again to front a new MoT busi­ness’s launch day cel­e­bra­tions in Brack­nell, Berk­shire.

Motest, which has 21 ser­vic­ing and MoT test sites across the south of Eng­land, bought China’s Grease Junkie garage in De­cem­ber last year and has fixed up the sofa. It’s bor­row­ing it from him to use it as part of its open­ing event on 30 April.

The for­mer Wheeler Deal­ers star still has a con­nec­tion with his old garage – he does the voice-overs on its lo­cal ra­dio ads.

John Ball, Motest man­ag­ing direc­tor, says: ‘It’s blue and fluffy now rather than the orig­i­nal leop­ard skin uphol­stery, but other than that it’s as it was in 1994.

‘ We had to re­new the track rod ends and ball joints. We then road-tested it and gave it an MoT, which it passed with no ad­vi­sories.’

The sofa, which is pow­ered by a 1.3-litre Mini en­gine, fea­tures a pizza dish as the steer­ing wheel, a beer can as the hand-op­er­ated brake ‘pedal’ and a cho­co­late bar as the gear­stick.

The open­ing event at the garage in Brack­nell will fea­ture a free and in­for­mal clas­sic and retro-car event from 11am un­til 4pm.

Ball is also plan­ning to have a clas­sic MoT test demo to show vis­i­tors what to look out for.

He adds: ‘This is a great ex­cuse for peo­ple to get their clas­sics out for a drive and dis­play them. Edd will be giv­ing peo­ple rides in the sofa through­out the day.

‘All we would ask is peo­ple turn up in some­thing clas­sic or very in­ter­est­ing — a bit like at the Ace Cafe!’ he laughs.

China has a his­tory of mo­toris­ing var­i­ous pieces of house­hold fur­ni­ture and cur­rently holds Guin­ness World Records for the fastest of­fice (Hot Desk, 87mph), mo­bile bed (Street Sleeper, 69mph), gar­den shed (Gone to Speed, 58.41mph) and not for­get­ting the toi­let (Bog Stan­dard, 42.25mph). www.motest.co.uk

Chris Evans be­hind the wheel of the sofa at CarFest North in 2009.

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