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Elite 4.9

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Posts posted by Elite 4.9

  1. Nice looking machine there Dave!

    Looks great in yellow.. and I must say, by reading all the way through your project on these posts, that you seem to be the perfect man for owning one of these classic GT cars and keeping it running.. I think Lotus is right up there near the top of the most difficult cars to work on. At times I found that to be true. But they are also near the top in road manners so I hope you get some good road trips out of your beauty. Mine has put smiles on my face that reappear when I think of driving experiences I have had with my Elite.

    Not sure if you ever sorted out your head light pods leaking ( they all do a little, but some vaseline on each connection will help slow down any leaks ) but I replaced mine with Electric units from a TR8 years ago, but if I had to do it again, I would use a set of pulleys with cables to pull the pods down with a handle much like an emergency brake, where the pods would be sprung in the up position and pulled shut by a lever under the dash so they would stay down as long as you want. No doubt lighter too which Chapman would have approved. lol

    Thanks for posting your project !     very enjoyable read 


    • Like 1
  2. Because there are no high rated 60 series tires, I bought some larger wheels ( 16 inch ) and found plenty of z rated tires of which I bought Dunlap SP 8000. Not sure if they are still available but that is the only option that I could figure out was doable as I drive hard in the corners. Here is what I got and how they look.


    I had to go with 45 series and upped the width on the back to 225 but the fronts stay the same 205 as there isn't any more room for any larger tires. One wouldn't need larger in the back but I have a lot more power so I thought it was a good idea


    love these tires as they are very good not only in the wet but also the dry 

  3. Thanks guys.

    I know that to drive the car as it is intended, one must go to a larger wheel if you want a high rated tires. 

    You just can't go back to the 70's low profile tires of the day ( 60 series ) as they aren't available. Most anyone knows that the reason for the up rated tires ( mine is z rated ) is for integrity and the capability to handle the heat generated under high cornering so a lesser tire would not be advised if one is going to take advantage of the extreme cornering capability of these amazing cars. Why else do you buy one ?

    Really over looked, even by Lotus enthusiastic, the Lotus factory claimed  the Elite  would out corner an Europe by 10%!  And it so well balance it makes you a better and safer driver.

    I have had mine close to the limit a few times but it is kind of difficult to find as it is so much faster than most cars are capable of and most people are afraid to push it that hard. This make the car very comfortable to drive fast without coming close to the limit and very enjoyable. With the right tires one can push with confidence and put a smile on your face and others that is hard to wipe off. lol

    I found that the front tires can NOT be increased without a larger offset ( and this would probably mess up the geometry ) as the inner finder is fixed so my 45 series 16 wheels enable one to use the original max width of 205 mm. There just isn't room of any larger. I also think the larger wheels fit the car better but that is just my opinion.  

    The real fun comes on the road with the Elite. Great road manners !!


    • Like 1
  4. A long time  ago when I was looking for tires, I came to the same conclusion that there weren't any tires that met my needs and my Elite. So, I updated my wheels to 16 s and got some z rated Dunlop sp 8000 which had just won a tire war of 10 or so high performance tires. The Dunlops  either were first or second in every category with the exception for the ride. Really good especially in the wet.

    I put 205 45 16 on the front and 225 45 16 on the back which also aid in with my new increased power from the aluminum Buick 215 aluminum engine (father of the rover V8 ) now punched out to 298 cid or 4.9 L. I really like the wheels from American mag and they were reasonable and look better IMHO on my Elite. Plus the performance is really no comparison to the old Dunlops and the original 14 inch Lotus wheels. 

    Check them out if you like.

    I really don't know any other way to get some tires that can take the punishment and heat generated from the superb handling of the Elite.


  5. Thanks Gavin for those kind comments. I have spend a good number of hours restoring and modifying my Elite. 


    By the way, my mother was from Mitchell. SD and my favorite Esprit model is the S1. lovely lines!


    Thanks to all. nice to be here,






    Here's what your car looked like originally. This was the first one. Ollie on the right did the bodywork design, my dad on the left did the Engineering Design. GG did the interior.


    Way cool. I have many books with mention of your father. The best part of the Elite is the way the suspension was so brilliantly designed and executed in combination with the tight chassis and body working together.


     It is one of the smoothest cars over bumps but when pushed really hard it just goes around the corner baffling passengers and the driver. You would be certain you are going into the corner too fast but find out half way through, you could have actually taken it a little faster without any problem. lol


    My car was the 110 built in "74. Most people love the lines of the Esprit but Chapman was rumored to prefer the Elite for fast driving pleasure.



  7. Thanks all for the warm welcome and kind comments.


    Too funny there Kimbers to your dads reaction. I know most purists don't like modifying but the funny thing is that I modified 5 things that the Lotus factory then made the same exact changes so they must have approved. lol  And this car really handles, I can assure you. Lotus claimed it would out corner a Europa by 15%! These Dunlaps I have on there make it stick like glue. 


    My car does have a mellow small block V8 rumble and with a 11 lb flywheel, it revs quickly, It is very healthy with around 300 hp/360 ft/pds. Same power to weight as a Viper but much lighter. Now it goes as well as it corners. Really fun car to drive.


    Sorry Vulcan Grey for all the excessive rain you guys got.



  8. Just joined. Was on the old Lotus forum so some may have seen my "74 Elite. Years in the making and modifying. I only modified things that were in need of fixing as the short comings of this car make it not desirable over here in the states. (no one wants to work on them)


    Have followed F1 racing since 1963 when Jimmy Clark won the title in a 25. Never looked back and Lotus has been my favorite flavor since. I'm also a Ford guy and many of the fastest Lotus's were Ford powered and some of the coolest cars ever built!


    You can view my car and the story of the modifications that I did and why. No offence intended to anyone but it needed a number of changes that Colin felt were ok but IMHO were almost the death of the company. Check it out if you like. Love Lotus cars!



    Nice to see an active Lotus forum again,





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