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jbrookstone

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  1. Esprit V8 Final Edition Chassis Number (VIN): SCCDC08253HA10545 Engine Number:LL918040131237 (signed by Jason Lane) USA Import Date: May 15, 2004 (last Esprit imported) Current Location: Manhattan Beach, CA Yellow with black interior Former Arnie Johnson/John English Lotus company car Jay Brookstone
  2. I have the last new Esprit shipped to the USA, in May of 2004, #10545. This was Arnie Johnson's/John English's former company car. It now resides comfortably in Southern California where it is driven and pampered. No mods, period. Pictures and history are here: http://www.pbase.com/jbrookstone/lotus. And in the February 2007 issue of THOROUGHBRED & CLASSIC CARS, in the article on the Last Crystal Cove Meet Does it work? So far. To quote a favorite SoCal tune... "It has 8 cylinders and uses 'em all. Got overdrive, just won't stall."
  3. Not only my 2003.5 FE, but also my youngest son asleep in the passenger seat with a Lotus cap on!
  4. Accidentally discovered the Cal and options menu for the odometer to my 2003.5 Esprit FE. This should be the same VDO speedo used on 1999 and up Esprits. To activate the menu, switch the ignition to on them immediately press and hold the Trip Odometer select button. "PULSE" will appear in the ODO readout, and if you wait, some sort of routine will execute ending in "P6170". If you press the button again, before the routine executes, "ADJUST" will appear and if you press it again "AUTOCL" will appear. Waiting on AUTOCL will cause "BUTTON" to appear. I did not experiment further, since it would be easy to mess up the cal settings (hope I didn't already!) I'm looking for documentation on this, now. Jay
  5. I have a 2003.5 Esprit FE. According to the shop manual (which really seems to stop in 1997 for the engine section, EMM) there are two OBD II ports, one near the battery in the rear and one under the passenger side dash in the front. I've found and used the rear connector to scan the ECU (Auto XRay EZ- Scan 6000). But after alot of digging and poking under the front passenger dash, no OBD II connector has been found. The SIR and Alarm connectors were present (and the tire monitoring system CPU and alarm CPU). I'm interested in knowing if persons with post 1998 Esprits have an OBD II connector in the front, and if so, where? Particularly for 2002 and up model years and for FE's (late 2003 and 2004). The engine ECU on my car identified itself as a "2004 Sport 350", by the way, then flashed up one trouble code, "P0466 - Evaporative Emission Control System Vent Control Malfunction" This code could be caused by a loose gas cap - but the cap was secure. Hmmmm. The "2004 Sport 350" ECU code confirms that FE's were shipped with Sport 350 ECUs, but since no 2004 Sport 350's were made, the change in year may mean that there are some differences between the FE and earlier Sport 350 ECUs. Any thoughts? Jay
  6. Hmmm... Hi Shah, Hey Gonzalo... and other Espritophiles. One more US Esprit. 2003.5 Final Edition V8. Yellow with black interior. The last Esprit imported to the US, according to Customs records. Not the last built, though, according to Lotus records (that would be Denis' car - also yellow). Link to gallery: http://www.pbase.com/jbrookstone/espritfe Jay
  7. Hmmmmm. An Esprit is probably the LAST car I'd try to crank up to 750-1000HP. Too delicate. Too hard to find parts. Too rare to trash. For that, I'd go with a Viper, as a good friend of mine did. Broken parts are much easier to replace (and he's broken plenty), the the engine is much more robust (and heavy), and the transmission is, too. Plenty of 'em around to play with. Or with a Mitsu EVO, which is really heck on wheels, right out of the box. Lots of engines available, lots of performance shops sell parts. Not too pricey. AWD. I like the Esprit for the whole package - the fact that it gets off the line relatively well, goes like heck, sounds great ('02 on or with aftermarket exhaust), fits me perfectly. Comparing the Esprit to a Toyota, Mitsu, etc. is like comparing a Timex to a Rolex. The Rolex does not keep better time - and who cares? It's more about style, feel and uniqueness. And the Timex is just fine for games, running, hiking, etc. where you just know you'll bash the thing up. Easy to replace. There's millions of 'em around. What I can't understand is the British. They actually DRIVE their Esprits. Lots of British cars with 75K miles. Not too many with 500 HP, though. Well... there WAS that 5th Gear Esprit - sort of an embarrassment, I guess. (just kidding!) In the '60's and 70's Chevelles, Mustangs, Pontiac GTOs a few years old were cheap, and we fixed em to go fast and broke 'em, fixed 'em..... Today, those cars are the Honda's, Mitsu's, Toyotas, etc. Sure. Crank 'em up! Blow 'em up. That's what they are for. But. Offer to trade a Lotus Esprit V8 for a "quicker" (I did not say "faster") rice rocket and I'll bet the ricemobile owner will jump at the offer. I have one buddy who has boosted his Viper to nearly 900 RWHP via supercharger, chargecooler, ethanol injection, etc. He has the quicker and faster car, no doubt about it. And another has a Mitso EVO (that's on its 3rd engine and nth transmission) that performs about on par with the Viper in the 1/4 mile (lighter with 4-wheel traction). He's installed a rotary magazine to let him change clutches on the fly with the push of a button. (just kidding, again - but not a bad idea... hmmm patent time!) Both hang over the Esprit, though. And both recognize its not a car to beat on. The funniest articles I've seen list the 1/4 mile and 0-60 times of Ferraris with F1 trannys using the "secret launch" mode. Secret because these cars, like the Esprit were never intended for drag racing. "Secret Launch" mode is also "secret self-destruct" mode. Built for high-speed driving in style - and great sound effects... at a price. Not drag racing. Which is where HP and Torque gains really help. Unless you really feel the need to exceed... 180 MPH. OK, OK.. maybe you do. Can I watch? From a safe distance, that is. Thanks for life and stress-testing the Esprit V8. Glad its yours and not mine. Gordonie already did this and has explained to many what the results are. Now I have to go into the garage and polish the V8 for a while. Why would anybody ever really drive this mobile piece of art? Note to myself: Need to change air in Esprit tires, rotate jackstands and apply a fresh coat of varnish to license plate. Best Regards, with a little humor, Jay
  8. Hmmmm. Hate to disagree with Slade... but the southern California freeways do empty out at times. Rough roads, though, that can get you airborne at 140 MPH or better, due to uneven overpasses. That said, 140 MPH in a 2003.5 V8, only car on path, done casually, no downshift, full tanks & with passenger. So easy it was scary. Oh.. Also launched the car for about 50 feet, just a little bit off the ground. So... what does the Esprit top out at? The Sport 350's and FEs won't hit the rev limiter until about 185+ MPH (7400 RPM). So... is top speed drag limited? I have a 1999 Road & Track "Top Speed" test where the Esprit hit 179 MPH, rev-limited (7000 RPM?). The review said the Esprit needed 1 more gear to hit its drag limit. Lotus says "175 MPH+". Anybody ever do a top speed test at a track, timed, with an Esprit?
  9. During a stay at the Hyatt Regency on the Avenue of the Stars in Los Angeles, this week, I spotted a red/tan 1997 V8 Esprit, series number 65352, CA reg. (last 4 digits) J235 on Thursday. The car was parked outside, in front from at least 10 AM to 6 PM, next to a Porsche Turbo S and had a custom center-exit exhaust that cut through a modified rear valence. Tires were Michelin Pilot Sports. Clearly a daily driver, more than 30K miles, I'd guess, but still attracted attention. People were asking "What is it?" Jay
  10. Hey, Otta: Avon Connecticut? Small world. Started out there many years ago. Have friends there still. Still return to East Haddam (very close to the Goodspeed) for 1-2 weeks in the summer. Been quite a few places since. Now living in a Los Angeles beach city. Used to road race along Rt. 9 (when it was fairly new and untravelled) in a 240Z. Thanks for the Optima battery recommendation. Best Regards, Jay Brookstone
  11. Just posted an image of my Esprit in the "Garage" Paul: Thanks for the invite - I'll take you up on your offer and register. Best Regards, Jay Welcome! We have a great Esprit community in OC/LA area (see www.southcoastlotus.com) and meet each Saturday at Crystal Cove just South of Newport Beach (7-9AM). Register on the SCLC site and we'll keep you posted to any local LA/OC events. Cheers! Paul [
  12. Johan: Maybe you could get a few MPH more by removing that blonde from your windscreen! I assume she's duct-taped on? (Sorry, just couldn't help myself when I saw your Blonde-equipped leopard Esprit) Jay
  13. According to my 2003.5 manual (I assume your 2002 will be similar), the OEM battery is a Tungstone 088, 570 SAE amp battery with 100 reserve minutes. Length: 154 mm, Width: 175 mm, Height: 206 mm. The battery in mine is in fact the OEM Tungstone. I'd line to replace it with a spiral-wound Optima unit. Anyone know which one fits? Also, I've take to using a "Battery Tender Plus" to restore and maintain a charge on this and my other low-use vehicles. Though small and only of 1.5 amp capacity, this little wonder will restore and hold a charge on even older, weakened batteries. Highly recommended, as the later Esprit anti-theft system draws a considerable amount of current, all the time. Best Regards, Jay Does anybody know the exact brand and type of battery the 2002 Esprit has? Mine was replaced, but is just a little too big to fit in that little spot back there.
  14. Hi, Dave: On the F355 - agree on the styling. My favorite Ferrari body, though I still like the classic 308/328 bodies as well. Magnum PI did for Ferrari what Bond did for Lotus. The previously mentioned F355 is a '95 GTS, gated shifter with tan interior. I like the styling GTS best, particularly with the top popped. A great car for cruising PCH. That said, the Esprit blows its doors in, though its much more difficult to drive with finesse. I really can't imagine the Esprit being more difficult to maintain than the 355 - mention "valve guides" to anyone with a '95 to '98 F355 and you are likely to receive a strained expression in return - probably due to the memory of an $11K-$21K service call. Which is one reason the car will very soon be vacating my garage. There is a reason Ferrari engines drop out so neatly. They have to for regular maintainence. (OK, so I'm whining) To everyone out there with an Esprit that's been ignored - try a bright yellow repaint and a performance exhaust that's short on silencer packing. Then throw the radar detector away - its a lost cause anyway. Seems to work for me, though mine came from the factory that way. Merry Christmas and happy holidays, everyone! Now, back to the single malts! Best Regards, Jay Welcome to the forum! Aside from the high wing, your post pretty much captures my experiences also. As for the Ferrari, my guess is that a black 355 tends to hide the delicate and subtle curves the car has; I'm sure a yellow one would get more attention. It's one of my favorite Ferraris. -Dave
  15. Hello, all. As of mid-November, I am the owner of a yellow USA final run edition of the Esprit V8. My impressions during the first month... Not subtle. Loud in color and engine note. Giant wing in rear. Not terribly refined or smooth. Deceptively quick as well as fast. Requires a driving style unique to the car in order to avoid getting into trouble. Mid-engine, low polar moment of inertia means fast steering response, and an easy spin if not watched. No electronic help on tap, so demands attention - which is the whole point. This is a drivers car that likes to run, period. Oddly tight turning circle for this class of car - more like on a Volvo RWD. No turbo lag worth mentioning and plenty of torque over 2000 RPM. But easy to stall off the line in casual driving. Long, low front overhang means the nose loves to meet the road at any opportunity. So I've pulled off the lower rubber air dam before it shreds. Kids will sometimes stop and cheer at the Esprit when it goes by. Owners of other ...exotics... ask "is that a Lotus" (well.... yes). Recently a business owner invited me to park in front of the door while I shopped and assigned an employee to watch it. And LA is pretty jaded when it comes to automobiles, so this is unusual. Never had a similar reception when driving the F355 (black). I think the only similar machine that might have as much "Wow!" factor over here currently is the new Ford GT-40. Which is a light-bodied, twin turbo V8 without active stability control or active suspension. Similar formula to the Esprit. Hats off to Colin Chapman, Peter Stevens, Jason Lane (he signed my Esprit's engine) and the other fine engineers & craftsman who created this remarkable machine. There is nothing else like it on or off the road. And it needs no excuses. Congratulations to other Esprit owners - of this piece of uncommon history. Hope to talk to all of you in due course. Best Regards, Jay Brookstone
  16. Hello Tony: I've been a Lotus fan since the Esprit was introduced in 1976. From there I became familiar with other Lotus achievements, and the work of Colin Chapman and his incredibly creative staff. Growing up in and around the Hethel plant must have been an adventure, both in design and build of cars and in the financial ups and downs of a small but innovative company. Recently, I purchased a 2003.5 "Final Run" edition of the Esprit in yellow/black livery, VIN S/N 0545. I've since learned that the first VIN serial number (2003 date code) is 0543 and the last (2004 date code) is 0621. This leaves room for 79 builds, but there is contradictory information on the web that 30, 33 or 45 were made, and for the US market only. Do you have any information on how many of this model (with pleated seats, tire monitoring system, billet HVAC knobs, etc., signed engine, etc.) were produced? And were they only shipped to the USA? Thanks in advance for your help! Best Regards, Jay Brookstone Los Angeles, California, USA [email protected]
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