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LW Elise

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  • Name
    LW Elisw
  • Car
    06 Lotus Elise

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  1. I sent an E-mail to Mike Kimberly about a month ago stating in essence that I was too old and decrepit to get into and out of my Elise, and that as an American, I thought that a Lexus V-8 engine, in a $100K US car which could be gotten into and out of would sell well here. On the 15th I got a reply acknowledging that Toyota Motor Corp had stepped in to help Lotus upon the unfortunate death of Colin Chapman, and stating that there would be future releases on this forum regarding the upcoming Esprit. No committment to an engine commentd on, but similar comments to the pro BMW engine regarding Toyota/Lexus and their role in Lotus history. Purely my spin, but it felt like he might be keeping their options open. I was quite impressed that he took the time for a personal reply at all, considering how much rebuilding he must be having to deal with currently. Reading the tea leaves, I wonder how much of a rethink the Esprit is undergoing, despite the recent concept drawings hitting the American auto magazines. Elise and Exige sales here seem soft, as many enthusiasts have theirs now, although the Exige S is still sought after as it hits our shores in November. But in my personal opinion, the well heeled buyer in America who is willing to pay $100K US for a vehicle will not have the knees or the patience to have to struggle in and out of a car. And I'm not talking about the overfed American stereotype.
  2. Thanks for the info. That will never do. 1500 miles on the Elise. Only had one tail light fall out and the allen screws from the emergency brake handle. So far, so good Now if I lose a few more pounds/stone, and stretch a bit more, I'll get used to getting in and out. Probably save me about $75,000 American..... .... as we await the $100K plus Esprit in 09.
  3. I'm sorry, I thought you said there was a DIFFERENCE between the UK and the US. Upon reading the UK version I didn't notice any. The one you set forth as the US version is simply a fable. We just "tax the rich" to get to the same result.
  4. I've added my complaint and asked for a response. Although harder to find here in the US, we do get episodes of top gear, and I have found their feedback on vehicles to be refreshingly blunt- such as the day they drove the Corvette Z06 and raved about it on the track, then when trying to determine why the Ferrari Maranello would cost 3 times as much for the same performance opined that the Z06, while fine on the track was "rubbish" as a road car. Not certain that I agree, but I really enjoyed the straight forward opinion. Sorry to hear that Hammond was injured, but that is no reason to stop enthusiasts from putting on a show for enthusiasts. People are injured and killed in the making of "regular" television shows, as well. That is no reason to take them off the air. And in speaking to Transport 2000, it might be worthy of note that almost all enthusiast stunts are done at air fields, or proper tracks. Loved the Elise vs Apache helicopter. I don't believe anyone was killed in the filming of that show. Not true of all Apache flights.
  5. It comes with the Toyota/Yamaha 111R engine, which in the US produces 190 hp normally aspirated. In the Exige S, it will be factory supercharged, and will produce 228 horsepower. The advantage is that the engine and supercharger will remain under warranty, which is anticipated to eat into profits of aftermarket companies such as Forcefed who currently offer increases in horsepower of 240 to 400 horsepower, but with engine modifications which threaten to void warranties (not proven by me one way or the other). We were advised about 4 weeks ago that dealers each could expect an initial vehicle in the storm titanium color to use for demo or sell. My local dealer is going to sell theirs, and is asking $3,500 US over MSRP of $56,900 for the vehicle. A different dealer is offering to sell at MSRP. Unlike the current Exige, which has a nonfunctional scoop on top (hood?), the Exige S scoop is functional, and although the roof/hood can still be unbolted and removed, there is some thought that doing so will interfere with smooth flow of air into the engine. Conversation continues in real life, and over at Elise Talk forum. You might consider trying the Elise. With the soft roof off, it is quite a bit easier getting into and out of. I took off the vestigial sunshades to open up the view area, and some people have moved to a mini-mirror for the same purpose. Might suit your needs better so long as you have something else to drive when it rains : - )
  6. $56900 American. First ones "in" (I'm in California) will reach our West Coast in November. List formed about 4 weeks ago when initial storm titanium was stated to be coming into dealers. I'm actually debating between going for an 02 Esprit or new Exige S since the new Esprit may be a long way away. Both would be about the same price here. Worthy of note is that the horsepower increase with the supercharger is only 28 hp, so I'm not sure so many people will be that upset. I'm more upset how soft the price will be on chopping in a basically new Elise.
  7. Hmmm.... just taking your first and last sentences to be an arse about it. From a Yank standpoint, the Elise does set a trend. I've owned a couple of Vipers, and two days ago test drove another, which was easy to purchase for the same money as an Exige S. I ended up driving home in my Elise, which for me is setting a trend toward being willing to give up 300 horsepower (190 vs 500 rough) for the lightness and rightness of a Lotus design. I'd still prefer a car I can get into and out of easier, but it will be hard to give up how wonderful the Elise is once the driver is inside of the car. It may look like a fishing lure to you, and I wouldn't say that I bought it for the looks, but to me it looks like in invitation to spend some time grinning, and enjoying my automotive day. On two other points....... I think the Elise market is saturated in the US All of us who are willing to put up with the discomforts of the vehicle, or are track rats, already have one, and will eventually move to the Exige S, or Elise Sport, or the lazy gits among us (of which I am one) will eventually move to the Esprit. When I read that the Esprit won't come out for a few years more, I didn't think that I would forever leave the idea behind. I simply thought that I would get another car to hold me over until it does come. People who have already owned a Lotus will probably always want one. The harder part will be to find the new buyers, if that is a goal. In the US, that is a job for a more comfortable car, with more horsepower.
  8. So I'm thinking Exige S to replace my Elise until the Esprit comes out. Good to see Lotus is going to survive.
  9. I KNEW there was a reason I liked it!! Got to admit that the Joker was far more interesting than Batman :- )
  10. I have an Elise, and from my perspective, that picture looks much more Gallardo to me than Elisey. I care less about "beauty" than function currently, but I don't think these current renderings of the possible future Elise are as beautiful an execution of the marque as the now discontinued V8 Esprit of 2002-2004. But then, I'm not a fan of the Gallardo look. Wouldn't stop me from buying one though. That's more of a pricing issue.
  11. Ferrari was my dream car. The Testarossa became the pinnacle of GTs with the marque having a wildly romantic racing heritage. I traded a 2003 Viper in to purchase a beautiful red over biscuit 88 Testarossa, in apparently perfect shape with 17,000 miles on it. The next day a red light came on saying "1-6". That was an ECU warning for cylinders 1-6. The dealer advised that replacing that ECU was between $1500 and $2500 depending on soucing the part. They paid for that. Nice of them. Then I was advised that despite the car having 17,000 miles, the number of years since the 15,000 mile service was such that I needed to do the 30,000 mile service. The Ferrari Chat board members confirmed that I needed to do that or risk serious engine failure if the BELTs driving the cams failed from age. How much? $10,000 US. I was going to pay the first half, and the dealer would absorb the second half. Why so much? The engine must come out of the car to reach the belts. The tune up took 3 weeks. While it was out, the mechanic suggested that I have the water pump rebuilt even though it was not faulty. Reason? Because if it DID go bad, it would require removing the engine to repair it. Cost? An additional $650 US My bill? $6200 with tax. NOW my Ferrari was PERFECT. Bad range on driving lights, like my Elise. 4000 pounds driven by 390 horsepower, so much weaker than my former Viper. Slower than an EVO, Elise, or many other vehicles. Very, very wide. Shifting was fun because it was difficult to get the gates done correctly, and no using second gear until the oil was warm. But the car was BEAUTIFUL. So I was happy. Dead battery quite a bit. Bought a new one. Rock into a turn signal cover. Bought a new plastic cover. $165. Couldn't park in the neighborhood I take Aikido. Couldn't park anywhere marginal for fear of damage. Two months later. Red light: "7-12" Now I'm off the dealer assistance period. How much? Same as "1-6" Why didn't they replace the second ECU at the same time as the first? They don't necessarily go out AT THE SAME TIME. Cost? I didn't pay it but it would have been between $1500 and 2500. The dealer ended up paying that as part of my trade "down" into the Elise. Go to drive the car in to the shop and it starts dying. Problem? Ignition coil. Thank goodness. I've replaced many of those, and this should be cheap. Dealer charge that I did pay? $1500. But now the warning is, you may have spilled raw gas into your catalytic converters if the ECU isn't bad, and when we test it, they may burn out. Price for the PARTS of replacing? $7,000 US I left the car, keys, and my attitude at the dealer, and walked out with the keys, warranty, and ownership of my Elise. That was June. They spent a fair amount more sorting out the Testarossa, and as of the other day, still had it for sale. It is probably PERFECT now. But I no longer care. I got the Elise because it was the only marque they had on the lot that I could drive out with clear title on, warranty, and keys and tax paid off, and repair bills left with the dealer, that they sold. I was going to trade that in for a Porsche GT3 or possibly a Vette Z06, but all of a sudden something odd happened. My 1000 mile cost $374. That ain't cheap for a glorified oil change, but by comparison it was a walk in the park. And the car reminds me of my TR4A, MGB, Datsun 1600s, and so on of my teenage years. I look forward to every drive in the car, although I don't look forward to getting in and out. I've "decided" to get the Esprit when it gets out because the more I read about Colin Chapman and performance through light weight, the more I buy into the concept. Suddenly I'm wondering if the Exige S will be imported into the US. That will be even harder to get into and out of than my Elise, but hey........... maybe it would be worth it. Now I want to know if I can get enough cooling air into the supercharger, and into the engine air if I take the top off of an Exige S, if I can get one into the US. I"ve been infected with the Lotus fever. My screensaver is an Exige with the top off that someone posted a picture of. I'm an old guy (56) and I'm acting like a child. I want the extra downforce of the Exige. I don't need it. The truth is that I think the wing looks really cool, and I like the blacked out wheels. And I want the 218 horsepower direct from Lotus engineering instead of aftermarket. I don't need it. But I love having the top off (permanently when it isn't raining) on the Elise. Lotus fever has taken the mind of another Yank! That much I can thank Ferrari for. : - )
  12. Was talking to the Lotus Sales manager for a minute or two when I ran in to pick up my custom plates, and he opined that, like me, he was considering buying the upcoming Esprit for himself. Apparently the demise of the program (alleged as the lawyers like to say) hasn't reached his desk. I have no problems with the engine from the RS4. I'd prefer it to an old BMW engine. It will be interesting to see what announcements and/or unveilings are made at the Paris auto show.
  13. I had the Audi 4.2 V8 in my 2002 Audi S8, and it was a very good performer. I would guess that this would be the engine if they don't go to Yamaha/Toyota since both the Gallardo and the new S-8 have gone to the V-10, which seems waay too much weight and power for a Lotus. I note that dealers are starting lists, and no one said ot worry about whether the Esprit will be produced.
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