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Elite 4.9

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  1. Jimmy smoked'em with Fords purpose built injected, 4 valve, gear timing with 11 gears and Chapman's beautiful Indy racer.

    Jimmy skipped the Monaco GP to race the 500 with this Lotus 38 Indy racer and what a beauty Colin and Ford put together that year including using the Wood brothers as their pit crew from American stock car fame. I remember the day.

    Jimmy really only lost the lead to pit and gas up. Not even close! 

    Jimmy and Lotus also won the world F1 title again that year as Jimmy was unbeatable in his Lotus 33. Them were the days !!!

    great picture,



    • Like 1
  2. 5 hours ago, mayevora said:

    Well said. 👍

    The problem with a single Test at age 17 (U.K.) if you stay fit healthy and well you could still be driving 80 odd years after that original test on you same license. I can’t see why a retest every 10 years (to coincide with driving license renewal) isn’t mandatory (my opinion)

    I wouldn’t mind betting that if a poll was set even here on a motoring forum that the majority would prefer not to retest for any number of reasons. (Prove me wrong someone please) 

    Then there would most likely be a completely different answer if the same question was asked, but stating that only an individual who passes their test after, for example January 2023 would have to resit and wouldn’t apply retrospectively to existing license holders - everyone would agree. 

    Question @Elite 4.9
    Why a 3 strikes and you are out rule on Drink Driving? - Make it just 1 and a custodial sentence (as a deterrent) and would surely cut the number of offences in half.

    yeah well, I didn't make the rule and you just can't stop people from doing what they do even if they are breaking the law. Many just don't care one bit. Too much booze.

    Years ago, I visited a gal in BC just across the boarder from Washington state where I live, and the cops would, on a regular basis, put up a road block and check each driver to see if he had been drinking. This of course was done late in the evenings and nearly always on the weekends when more drunks are out driving.

    I am sure it was effective at stopping people from drinking and driving but it would not stop all of them. A problem which more than likely will never get totally fixed until you have your car drive you home all by itself which they are building right now.

    • Like 1
  3. Hey Ivan,

     Unfortunately I had my bumpers made years ago and I have not kept in contact with the guy who pulled my parts. But his name is Jerry Foley and he lived in Tacoma, Washington.

    Not sure if he is even still alive but you could do a search and maybe find him.

    Also inquiring with other Lotus clubs that are not in your area is a place I would try as well. If you have an old part, nearly any fiberglass man could make a mold for you and pull some parts and if you go that route, find others who will help cover the cost of the molds and hook him up with Lotus clubs in your area so others may want these Eur spec parts.



  4. Hey Ivan,

    The Fed version of the second gen Elite had the most ugly bumpers and really did nothing except make it a foot longer. The black rubberized cover went south quickly so I discarded mine  and I found replacements.

    I bought my front and rear bumpers ..(Eur spec ) and the front air damn from a local fiberglass man who had molds to pull parts. This guy also had other Lotus molds to pull parts from.

    Probably your best bet is to join the local Lotus Club and inquire there for similar parts.

    I always found this to be a most excellent decision when buying a car like a Lotus. Most shops don't even know how to work on them so you have to either do it yourself or use the clubs for a good shop.




  5. What I have learned in many years on the road, is that 80 % of the people should be ridding the bus. They are mentally, mostly absent driving their car and are on auto. I call it route 350. Their bodies are present but their minds are on some other important matter and they really aren't paying attention. 

    We had an accident, a while back, on a major two lane ( each side ) divided freeway, 70 mph limit. This happened on a long, very steep grade up hill stretch, maybe a good 5 miles and straight as an arrow so one can easily see for miles.

    A gasoline double tanker was loaded and only able to make about 25-30 mph going up this hill and a full sized van ( same size as a full size pickup ) hit him in the rear starting the gas truck on fire, killing the van driver. So hot it burned for two days as the state police closed the road and just let it burn itself out.

    Now this happened on a sunny day with nearly no traffic. I can imagine some ways this could be explained like a heart attack just at the wrong moment but this guy was doing 55 mph and had plenty of time to see and move over to pass this tanker.

    This is easily explained by my route 350 scenario. His mind was so consumed by something he couldn't even watch where he was going.

    And these are the conditions we have to drive our Lotus's in, can you believe it? LOL



  6. Welcome Glides, to the Lotus forums. 

    Nice to see such a sleek looking Elite, definitely a great looker in black !

    These cars were designed from the start for a V8, and it is fairly common modification to install one, especially here in the US.   IMHO, it makes the Elite a much nicer car with the much needed increase in power, making it a great GT for road tripping.



  7. Welcome No 7. Glad to have you on board here at the Lotus Forum.

    Spend some time (last couple years ) near Nez Perce and I have a few friends in Boise. 

    You definitely have the Lotus fuel running in your veins. 


    atb, Richard

  8. Hey Oz and welcome to the Lotus Forum and good to see another US Lotus guy.

    Lived in San Diego, just south of La Jolla, for a few years so love your constant sunny, warm, dry, summer weather.

    What you need is the doc (on here somewhere) that shows all of the inter-changeable parts and what actually was used, many times, when these cars were new. 




    • Love 1
  9. Grew up with coffee the first thing I smelled each morning as my dad had his normal first cup at home before going to work.

    Me, vast majority of my life, loved the smell didn't like the taste...way too bitter.

    But then my daughter got me started drinking an espresso, the darker the better, with some liquid stevia sweetener, in various flavors.

    Couldn't believe how people could drink it black but that is how I enjoy it today.

    And HOT!


    Tea is ok.... just not something that drives me to it all that much.



     What's your poison?

    But one of my all time favorite racing drivers, "Teddy tea bagger" Ken Miles. I knew it had to be a great English drink way back the 1960's if K. Miles has to have it.

     Coffee is just king in the US especially in the Pacific NW. It is also one of the most powerful antioxidants.

    What better way to start your day in wet cold damp conditions that are now upon us closing in on winter soon. 

    One thing I just learned is that the caffeine, in coffee, has a half life of 8 hours meaning you still have half the caffeine in your body after 8 hours.





    ps love coffee ice cream..BEST...Starbucks "Java chip" dangerous substance !!!!

    • Like 1
  10. Quote

    I need to get the Elite on the lift to see if there are no holes in the exhaust. 

    Make sure you check the top of the exhaust pipes for holes as this is where it corrodes first and they are right next to the frame and if so, it won't be long before the rust will damage the thin sheet metal frame.

    My Elite, with just 28,000 miles on it when I bought it, had holes in the top of the pipe. No real damage had yet occurred on the frame but then mine was only 8 years old when I got it.

    Nice find and really not all that bad to start restoring your classic Elite.




  11. Welcome David to the Lotus forum.

    One of my all time favorites is the Elan since it was new. Great choice !

    By the way, my grandfather left Devon, England, real close to Plymouth way back in 1902 just after queen Victoria funeral.

    Maybe that is why I have had so many English sports cars over the years.  It's just in my blood.   lol




    • Like 2
  12. Welcome to owning an Elite. But you have to remember these cars are old so most systems on these cars that aren't lovenly cared for, just have to been gone through especially the brakes.

    When Road & Track magazine, road tested the first year second gen Elite, it had the shortest stopping distance of any car they tested with the exception of a racing car. 

    That was the first thing my dad taught me as a kid working on my '57 Ford, brakes.

    • Like 1
  13. This is one thing that even the Lotus factory changed later getting rid of the same basic system that they used since the Elan. This was never changed on the Elan that I know ( they worked  just the opposite from the second gen Elite...vacuum powered down and spring loaded up ....till they figured out you after you use all the power, like accelerating uphill, the old Elans headlamps would fall  back down as they were vacuum assisted in the up position. Not a good design for night time driving.

    Older Fords had this system of vacuum powered wipers and one had to let off the throttle. for a second or two, to clean the windshield in a rain storm.

    After owning my '74 Elite and getting tired of seeing my headlamps in the up postilion which would only say down for a max of 12 hours and that was after I worked hard getting all the leaks as best I could eliminated , I decided to modify them with electrics lifts like I had on my TR8. 

    Mazda uses an electric system that also works well for this mod and they stay where you put them.

    Well worth the time do so IMHO.



  14. To drop the rear end is no big deal. Once you do it a couple of times, it can be taken out in less than an hour.  I used an air powered rivet gun with a flat hammer end to drive out the long bolts holding the whole rear end in place. Just use a smaller diameter long punch to drive out the bolts completely.

    You will have to disconnect the emergency brake cable right at the rear end. This seemingly simple step can give you fits if you try while the rear end is up in place unless you cut holes behind the rear seats to easily access the cable. You can lower the whole mess down to better access this step  but rear end won't be totally free until the cable is disconnected. 

    Not only will you need new seals on both sides , you will need two steel rings, one for each side,  which is the most difficult part to deal with. It has to be cold chiseled off by smacking it with a hammer.

    Then when putting the new one on, you may have to take a few thousands off the inside of the steel ring with some light 220 grit wet dry sandpaper, like I did, and you will also need to heat the ring up in your oven to help expand it enough to slip it over the axle after you have carefully slid the new seals on without tearing the thin rubber which is the actual part that fails and is easily torn. Ask me how I know that?

    There is another thing you may have to deal with and that is the valve in the brake line ( located on my '74 Fed Elite in the engine bay, passenger side, low just before the brake line heads back to the rear. This part, can and will stick and not allow any brake fluid past to actually actuate the rear brakes. I tried to power bleed my rear brakes and even 160 psi was not enough to pump fluid to the rear brakes.

    Like anything new it may look a bit intimidating but after if you regularly do major stuff on your Elite it will just be another step necessary to keep these cars with all the original parts on the road. However, this is not all that difficult.




  15. Why people want to even think of altering or modifying any Lotus suspension is beyond me.

    Just because Lotus was so innovative in F1, that for many years, Lotus was so far ahead of the rest that the races became a race for, who was going to take second. Lotus road cars are a direct derivative of their racing cars so any modification that alters anything that has to do with handling should be an obvious no. no if you ask me. Why else do people buy these cars if not for the way the are designed with road manners a cut above the rest. Great fun !

    These Elites give the impression of a larger car ( Body shape to allow 4 seats and could easily been a two seater...same wheel base as many Corvettes of the past.) but are so well sorted and designed to give much pleasure to those of us who love to corner fast.....much faster than most anyone drives simply, because you have to try really hard to find the limit in the Elite.

    I installed a Buick V-8 but it is as light as the original 907 Lotus twincam otherwise I wouldn't have done it because the sensitiveness of the front end springs, as they would have to be changed for most larger engines. And my Elite is already too low for some parking lot speed bumps so why would you want to lower it and mess up a car that is simply mind blowing in its' road manners especially around corners.

    I have made a good number of improvements and modifications on my Elite but this was one thing I really loved about the Elite, the fact that I didn't have to lower it because it already comes that way from the factory.





    • Like 1
  16. I always add Lucas oil stabilizer to my oil which is a thick, VERY sticky additive made for all engines. It not only will increase your oil pressure but will also eliminates dry starts when cold and sticks to all bearing and rotating engine parts to make them last longer. It will also give you better cylinder ring sealing which will raise your compression slightly and give you more power and mileage.

    I have used it for many years in all my engines and the big truckers swear buy it, buying it by the gallon. A friend with a Detroit diesel ran his 14.8 liter straight six to a million miles before overhauling it !                      He also got up to 8.7 mpg (US) Pretty good for such a large loaded truck powered semi engine.

     It also allows motor oils a higher degree of lubricity which reduces oil consumption.

    Great stuff !! 

    It has been around for a long time and has been tops in my book for many years and I never drive without it.




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