Lotus Esprit S4 (1993-1996)
British Racing Green
April 4th 2005.
After 18 months of looking at various Esprits, I went up to Wigan and purchased the car you see here. 2 previous owners and 18k on the clock with a full service history based on months and not mileage.
Its not concours, but it is well above average. The rims have a few scuff marks which I will rectify by having them refinished, or maybe a set of Nova or Futuras when I can afford them.
A couple of the headlamps have seen the reflective coating deterioate, no doubt to a blocked drain hole.
The tool kit, sunroof bag and deflector have gone awol as has the battery cover. All will be replaced in due course.
Not sure if the coolant fans are working either. I will investigate this further. The exhaust also is not square in its mounting.
The cars condition is reflected by the mileage and apart from a small nick on the centre console leather, the interior is spot on.
Having owned an S3 Turbo previously, I had been looking for an SE but to no avail. i spent 18 months looking, lots of ropey motors out there. Nice mechanicals, grotty body and vice versa.
I have got an agreed value policy on the car for a very reasonable �235 fully comp.
The rear view mirror fell on the drive home. It has cracked around the stem so a replacement will be required. Temperature gauge does not read above 45C. Hoping this is a sensor problem. The aircon also needs a regas.
I have just purchased the freescan software. So I will ahve a dabble and see whats what!
Brake light switch has a habit of sticking on at the end of a journey, necessitating a toe under the pedal to bring it home.
The oil pressure gauge dropped to zero on the way to work. Nearly had heart failure. Fortunately its only a sensor problem.
Ok, we now have some work in progress:
Find and repair water leak, around the chargecooler pump.
Regas the aircon.
Replace the exhaust mountings, as the rubber block has departed from the metal bracket fixing.
Get the cooling fans working / replaced, as all 3 are non functioning.
Replace and change oil to Castrol Rs synthetic.
Renew oil filter, plugs and air filter.
Replace juddery wiper blade.
Sort out low temperature reading on Temp gauge. Possibly the sender unit.
Fix oil temp warning, due to random working.
Replace valve caps, because a thieving scrote nicked the others!
Have a go with freescan.
Get a touch up stick to rid chips on the nose
Mmm. Bigger list than I expected, now I have written it down.
Well all the work is completed. Well chuffed. Just finished the engine service, so its ready to go for MOT. Its been nearly a year since ive driven the car. Cant wait. Insurance renewed an MOT booked. Purhased a wind deflector and sunroof bag for �80. Bargain. Also purchased an exterior car cover from Specialised. Nice
Passed the MOT today with flying colours. New Futura's fitted. Had a fantastic hoon about. All ready for the LEF weekend on the 8th. Cant wait.
Used the car non stop until Oct 2007. Good as gold all year with good mileage covered. Exhaust manifold has now cracked and needs replacing. This is a horrible job, so the car will taken off the road for the winter and the engine removed.
The crack is due to the onrush of water from big puddles. Avoid them at all costs or suffer the cracking peril! Dont believe, then try it and let your wallet take the battering.
I will do a load of other jobs while the car is off the road. Not that anything in particular needs attention. i will do some refurb and subtle upgrades which I will record on here in due course.
The nose on the car is peppered with fine stone chips again and I will need to find a solution to this!
This is a fabulous car.
Well I am still at the work in progress stage, trying to get the car ready for Donny. Im going to miss the Brands Hatch deadline I had set for the 15th. But I have come to far to compromise the work i have by rushing it to completion. By the time it is completed i will have spent a fair few pennies and invested all of the winter. I will detail the work in the mods section with before and after pictures.
The work completed will include the following:
Remove Engine and Gearbox - Done
Strip clean and overhaul whilst out of car - Done
Replace and refit new timing belt, AC, Power steering and Alternator belts - Done
Renew Cambelt tensioner - Done
Overhaul water pump - Done
Replace thermostat and gasket - Done
Fit new stub outlet to pump - Done
Replace coolant sensor in Inlet manifold - Done
Remove and replace Inlet manifold core plug which was leaking under pressure - Done
Renew all hoses with silicona alternative upgrade - Done
Renew and upgrade the Primary Injectors with blue printed RC Injectors.
Renew and upgrade the Secondary Injectors with blue printed RC Injectors.
Renew Spark plugs - Done
Renew Oil filter.
Renew and upgrade airfilter to K&N.
Renew Engine Oil with Castrol Edge 10w 60.
Renew clutch with Valeo upgrade +25% torque - Done
Renew Taf X Gearbox oil.
Clean and detail Engine - Done
Clean and detail Gearbox- Done
Renew and upgrade Turbo wastegate Capsule - Done
Inspect and overhaul turbo where required - Done
Fit new Exhaust manifold & Gaskets - Done
Replace studs & other fixings - Done
Flush coolant system and replenish with new anti freeze.
Upgrade ECU chip with PUH chip 6 Race.
Renew various fixings and detail relevant attachments.
Repair rearmost os & ns body mountings - Done
Overhaul Clutch master cyclinder and fit new seals - Done
Overhaul Clutch slave cylinder and fit new seals - Done
Remove "Red" clutch hose and fit braided stainless equivalent - Done
Renew Gearbox translator bearings and rose joints.
Make repairs to various fragile fibreglass mounting points. ie, boot floor - Done
Upgrade Front brakes to "Brembo" specification.
Upgrade Rear Brakes to "Brembo" specification.
Fit new front wheel hubs and bearings.
Fit EBC turbo groove discs front and rear.
Fit EBC Yellow pads, front & rear.
Fit new Handbrake cables.
Fit Stainless Braided brake hoses.
Fit new EBC turbo groove discs.
Fit EBC yellow pad upgrade, Front and Rear.
Upgrade rear brakes to "Brembo" spec.
Renew Handbrake cables.
Fit new bespoke Stainless sports exhaust.
Fit upgraded Adjsutable suspension all round.
Clean and detail engine bay.
Re skin heatshields in Engine bay.
Renew Suspension with AVO adjustable damping.
Fit Lotus "Eibach" Springs front and rear.
Detail and dress wheel arches.
Detail and dress all Suspension and wheel hub hardwear.
Fabricate and fit new jacking mounting plate.
Fit new all on headlamp relay.
Fit new rear view mirror.
Fit new Stainless Door sills.
Replace windscreen trims with new.
Fit new aerial amplifier.
Fit new window seals.
Fit new boot floor seal.
Fit new Engine cover Seal.
Fit new "Lotus" carpet mats.
So that is keeping me busy. Upon completion, MOT, RFL and renew insurance and Bobs your uncle. I have 18 days left.
Flew through the MOT, so happy days. Off to the Silverstone Classic. A few demonstration laps around the track add to the flavour of the weekend.
Car is running above temp and it looks as though the water pump is leaking.
Sure enough, the waterpump needs replacing. Purchased a replacement from SJS for a reasonable �95. Stripped the old and in with the new. Not a bad job actually and much more straight forward than I would have imagined.
New pump is fine, but compression check shows another issue that could be the headgasket. Number 3 cylinder has evidence of water in it. System is pressurising and compression is low. Off with its head then, but not yet. Bugger.
Still havent fitted the #6 chip from marcus either. This will have to wait now, until I am satisfied that all is good.
Brembo upgrade has proved its worth, although the EBC Yellow pads and discs are still bedding in.
Suspension upgrade is unproven as I have insufficient mileage to comment at present.
Have applied for Sorn and gearing up to possibly remove engine again to do the head work. Happy days.
Bought an Elise. Now I can Lotus 24/7. Fabulous. ready to rock n roll on the Esprit then.
Remove head and replace head gasket. Straight forward task, done with engine in situ. Head and block have been checked for being true and no issues. crack testing also reveals no issues. Cylinder liners are withing tolerance, so on with its head. Replace all gaskets. Replace anti freeze. Change Oil and filter.
100 miles of restrained running, show normal service is resumed. Like sitting in a big comfy sofa compared to the Elise.
Im not overtly happy with the new suspension. It feels far too soft, despite being on the hardest settings. I will have to have a tinker with this and optimise the settings on the rebound and pre load.
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