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Lotus Elise need some education

Discussion in 'British' started by fish78, Jul 15, 2009.

  1. fish78

    fish78 F1 Rookie

    Sep 10, 2004
    4,727
    Georgia
    I am easily confused...is the Elise a convertible a coupe or a hard top convertibele? Also, is there a roadster...no top at all...version? What are the differences in the new models vs the early models...are they reliable? Can a fat guy find any level of comfort inside? Tell me what you think I need to know...What amount can decent used models be had for?
     
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  3. bcc

    bcc Formula Junior
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    Jul 31, 2006
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    The ELISE is a convertible (a targa really with the fixed rollbar and flying buttresses behind the driver) that comes standard with a cloth removable top. A removable hard top is available as an option.

    The EXIGE has the same basic body style, however it's roof is fixed in place and not removable.

    There was a limited (just a few in US) production roadster, the 340R, available several years back. No top, very bare bones, even more so than the standard Elise.

    Check out www.elisetalk.com. Lots of great info there as well.

    Good Luck!
     
  4. Aedo

    Aedo F1 Rookie

    Feb 22, 2006
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    My favourite car :)

    As bcc says Elisetalk is a great resource (now renamed www.lotustalk.com - the other link still works though).

    Some specific answers:
    They are all targa's (rather than convertibles) in road registerable form (US) but there is a roadster, the 2-eleven, which is for track only (they can be registered in UK/Europe).
    Elise
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    2-Eleven
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    There are only two models of the Elise available in the US - the standard car which was released in 2005 (190hp NA) and more recently the Elise SC (218hp supercharged). There have been minor changes over the years such as a change to DBW throttle and better seats (probax) from 2006 and updated instruments in 2008, but nothing fundamental.

    They are a very simple car with a toyota drivetrain and as such very reliable (but obviously condition and treatment by former owners is significant) with no particular difference between the model years.

    As for fitting in one... well - you will need to try one on for size :) The biggest issue isn't fitting in it - it is getting in and out (high sill and low roof if you have the top on). There are owners who weigh in at 250+ lb and there are owners who are 6'6 who use the car daily. This issue is really a personal one.

    Cost - you should be able to get an Elise in great condition and low miles for <$30k (but I'm not in the US and not overly familiar with pricing so take that with a grain of salt)


    Beyond the Elise range is the Exige which uses the same chassis with slightly different bodywork (fastback) and do not come with a soft top option as standard (but that can be retrofitted as the roof is not structural). The Exige came out in 2006 with the same engine as the Elise but in 2007 that was replaced with the Exige S which introduced the supercharged engine (220hp). There is now an Exige S 240 with 240hp and a limited edition 260 hp version (with lots of carbon :)).
    Exige S
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  5. fish78

    fish78 F1 Rookie

    Sep 10, 2004
    4,727
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    I really wish there was a US street legal version of the 2 eleven...it seems just what I have in mind...
     
  6. Aedo

    Aedo F1 Rookie

    Feb 22, 2006
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    #5 Aedo, Jul 16, 2009
    Last edited by a moderator: Sep 7, 2017
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  8. ND Flack

    ND Flack Formula 3

    Sep 18, 2007
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    Incorrect -- the roof can be removed -- there is some debate as to whether or not that interferes with the airflow to the roof scoop.

    (I should note that I havent paid much attention to the newest Lotus developments, but the Exige of two years ago had a removable top)

    Absolutely correct!
     
  9. k wright

    k wright Formula 3
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    Feb 4, 2004
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    The Exige roof comes off just like the Elise roof. If you want to affix a soft top to the Exige it is easy and replacement soft tops are easy to come by.

    There is a kit available that sources air for the intercooler from the side scoops and it is a much higher flow rate than the small mail slot on the roof.

    It is a true sports car. Don't drive one unless you plan to buy it.
     
  10. Bullfighter

    Bullfighter Two Time F1 World Champ
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    Jan 26, 2005
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    #8 Bullfighter, Jul 22, 2009
    Last edited: Jul 22, 2009
    No.

    I love the Lotuses, but as a lean, shorter guy who does a bit of weightlifting I can tell you the seat is snug and you need to be a gymnast to exit the car without falling face-first on the pavement.

    Not sure anyone can find any level of comfort inside, but you really do feel tucked in. It makes my Ferrari 328 feel like touring car.
     
  11. Bullfighter

    Bullfighter Two Time F1 World Champ
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    Exactly. Two seats, open top, manual gearbox, mid-engined.

    Lotus deserves a standing ovation for the Elise/Exige. It weighs a little more than half of what a Ferrari 599/612/California does. An absolutely brilliant car in age of obese computerized disposable "sports cars".
     
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  13. JM4re

    JM4re Formula Junior

    Aug 21, 2006
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    I know a guy that goes to my cigar bar that just last week picked up an '06 Elise in orange. 33k 1-owner miles, sold from Lotus dealer here in town for 32.5k I believe with a 3-year ext. warranty. He's about 6' and 200-215lbs and he is rather snug but then again it's his weekend car only. And if it's out then it's likely topless so headroom isn't an issue.


    I'm sorry but this is just an asinine thing to do to a street-version of the car. He's putting a fine design under his homemade meat-cleaver. Fewer body panels, lighter, more powerful, less resistance. Why not just strap an engine to a wheelchair while he's at it?
     
  14. carguyjohn350

    carguyjohn350 F1 Rookie
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    Mar 7, 2007
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    I think it looks great for a home job, or even a pro conversion! Not what I would do but then that isnt really the point is it. ;)

    After all, most things in life anyone truly loves someone else truly hates.

    YMMV
     
  15. BT

    BT F1 World Champ
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    Mar 21, 2005
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    I think the conversion he did is awesome. If I had the skills I would love to do something like that.
    :)
    BT
     
  16. vteqe

    vteqe Formula Junior

    Mar 5, 2005
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    The Elise has about the same interior room as my 1970 Lotus 7.
     
  17. rossocorsa13

    rossocorsa13 F1 Rookie

    Jun 10, 2006
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    Just finished reading the thread on that car...

    The owner deserves a medal.

    Incredible.

    Would pay every bit of the asking price for it.
     
  18. ...m...

    ...m... Karting

    Aug 31, 2008
    126
    ...he just dropped his asking price to $32k - that is a righteous steal...
     
  19. thirteendog

    thirteendog Formula 3

    Mar 6, 2008
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    That sounds like fun :D
     
  20. JM4re

    JM4re Formula Junior

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    #17 JM4re, Aug 12, 2009
    Last edited by a moderator: Sep 7, 2017
  21. the_stig

    the_stig F1 Rookie
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    Sep 19, 2005
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    Holy crap! What's the speed rating on those tires?
     

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