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WayneB

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Everything posted by WayneB

  1. Oddly, I have actually owned some of the cars mentioned in this thread and dont miss them at all I fancy a nice copper Lamborghini Urraco P300 ATM,
  2. Poor old Aaron Spelling, having to produce all of those awful TV shows in the 60s/70s/80s in order to buy his dream house only to die and have his Mrs. sell it to Bernie E for 50c on the dollar so he can give it to one of his kids. Makes you want to cry.
  3. I have been told that Lotus Cars USA will be relocating their Headquarters from, Atlanta Georgia to the Lotus Engineering Facility in Ann Arbour , Michigan in the near future as part of another cost cutting exercise.
  4. Wasnt the last job Colin Chapman had before starting Lotus with British Aluminium? Wasnt the first Lotus cars built bodied in Aluminium by Williams and Prichard? Seems the total construction technique Lotus are now going for is the same that they came up with for Aston-Martin with on the Vanquish, the bonded Aluminium monocoque type designed chassis, using superformed , hand finished aluminium panels (excepting the fascias, and front wings which are made of semi rigid deformable plastic) As cost is now not an object, it will produce a body that has more controlable panel gaps and surfaces that are truer , more stable and less wavy(which is why Aston-Martin currently uses that system) It will be heavier than an composite paneled Evora type shell though (not all that much) Problem is that Lotus are currently heavily promoting the brand via F1 and of course in F1 lightness is everything so I would think as price is now not an issue, a carbon fibre chassis and body would be the way to go (as the new McLaren demonstrates) Seems to me that Lotus will now be having an Aston-Martin type vehicle built (at the same Magna plant that AM use in Austria), One of my favourite sports cars the Honda NSX used an all aluminium method of monocoque construction and it worked very well as I remember. .
  5. Yeah, I took your comments on the lack of cachet of the Toyota powertrains and the "track day noddycars" to be negative. As for my view of the new cars, they arent actual cars are they, at this stage just 5 fibreglass mock ups, so If you mean do I rate the way they look the answer is not really, the Elan was the most interesting to me (besides that front end) but as its not being made till god knows when its a moot point anyways. Tonys comments Lotus use of other manufacturers powertrains made alot of sense , after all Lotus was only able to make the 907 (which morphed into the 910/912) when Jensen footed the bill, and the 918 when AC did the same. That Toyota /Lexus V8 with the supercharger would have made a great power plant for the Esprit , probably alot better for the money than the German built and designed Cosworth unit that will be badged as a Lotus.
  6. Very Interesting. 4 Elises but you dont actually seem to like them? I dont claim to be able to understand your logic on this one, but as long as your happy.
  7. GKP, I dont think you really get what Lotus has been really all about, cleverly designed affordable lightweight sportscars with excellent USABLE handling and performance on a daily basis in real world conditions. Lusting after the equivilent of the 80's Athena Poster of the red Countach we all had on our bedroom walls will do you no good pal, as when I actually got to drive one I found it cumbersome, heavy, unweildy and totally unsuited to daily driving, in fact the Turbo Esprit of the same era was a much better car IMO, lighter and quicker , and better handling on the roads I drove on. As for your Noddy comment about the Elise, whilst I dont personally own one, friends of mine do and believe me they really love those cars with a passion, of course they cant do 200mph flat out , but a well driven one on a winding road will leave most supercars in the dust. Interested to see them reply to your snobbish ,patronising and demeaning comments aimed at their cars.
  8. A 2 million pound profit is a profit (in my book anyways) and the MJK 5 year turnaround plan was actually working and gaining momentum was it not? Had Proton continued with it we would now have had an repowered Evora/Exige and the MSC Esprit would have been coming on line now , products which would be making revenue for Lotus and keeping staff in Norfolk employed to build them. Was the MSC Esprit so bad that all of the time /money and effort that went into designing and engineering it had to go to waste when it was scrapped by the new Lotus management? From what I heard it was an excellent car, and definately something I wanted to own, Toyota engine and all. Speaking of Toyota engines, now all of a sudden they arent good enough for a Lotus? Using a modified powertrain is an excellent way of bringing a low volume hand built affordable sportscar to market, but of course the new Lotus isnt about affordability is it? I think building outlandish supercars for fickle oil sheiks to tool around Dubai in is actually a riskier longtearm propasition than producing a popular , usable, affordable Mid Engine Sportscar myself.
  9. Have you forgotton Mike Kimberley turning around Lotus to return a 2 million pound plus profit in mid 2008? Money, Money, Money ,of course they are in it for the money. If some company offered me a years wages at 4 times my current pay of course I would go, after all wouldnt I have at a least couple of years funds available to cushion me enough to find a new position when the whole scene goes moody? Just my opinions/observations, Im not privvy to confidential inside Lotus information like yourself.
  10. So If I wanted to hire a load of automotive executives away from secure jobs with established companies to add credibility to my grand plan of turning around a company that was suposedly failing, how would I do it? Simple, make them an offer they couldnt refuse by paying them ALOT more money in wages and bonuses than they could ever had got before in their previous positions. I have never regarded Lotus as a company that was particulary overstaffed, on the contary the company has always seemed to function with a smaller workforce compared to an operation like Aston-Martin, so I presume the economies are primarily being made to fund the paychequesof the execs. using the existing revenues generated by the sales of cars and not from some pot of gold from obscure financial institutions I have never heard of. I feel genuinely bad for the blokes who have been laid off by Lotus over the last couple of years (remember the trim shop?)and of course their chances of finding a job locally must be pretty slim to none ATM. Sad.(to me anyways)
  11. I have been lucky to have met MJK on a few occasions over the years, he is certainally a person you literally have to look up to! His dedication and hard work without doubt made Lotus one of the greatest niche sportcar manufacturers in the world, saving it from oblivion on more than one occasion. Mike has certainally had more than his fair share of heath setbacks over the last year or so, the back injury, his eye and now this. Get Well Soon Mike, looking forwards to when we can have a drink and a ,chat again.
  12. After reading the judges findings on the case I have to say I was very impressed with his understanding of Lotus / Team Lotus history and as such delivered a fair judgement. What surprises me is that Group Lotus under Mr.Bahars leadership bought such a case to court at all, as surely an world renouned marketing guru such as Mr.Bahar would have known that Group Lotus had never competed in single seater circuit racing nor had they owned the rights to the "Team Lotus" name or the roundel carrying the name. As Mr.Bahar once worked in a marketing capacity for Ferrari, I am reasonably sure that he would have known that Scuderia Ferrari Spa and Ferrari Spa are different companies, Scuderia Ferrari Spa race in F1 and design and construct single seater racing cars and Ferrari Spa design , construct and build road cars. As Tony Kimberley has pointed out on more than one occasion, Group Lotus failed to procure the Team Lotus name and logo which historically is the true representation of Lotus in Formula One, as Scuderia Ferrari is of Ferrari. So Group Lotus have their decal on the front of the Renault and Team Lotus have their own chassis designed and produced in house by themselves. Even though the Renault sponsored by Group Lotus effort is producing more attractive results as far as finishing positions go, the Team Lotus effort is more to the history of Lotus in Formula 1 , designing ,building their own chassis in Norfolk, England. I actually think the court case has added value to the Team Lotus brand, in a kind of David (Tony Fernandes) vs Goliath (Dany Bahar, Group Lotus and Proton) and taken away value (and credability) from the Lotus brand. Thank god Dany Bahar is not an automotive engineer or god only knows how cocked up the handling would be of the new forthcoming Lotus Esprit (If it gets built at all)!
  13. It still stole the Paris show from Donato Coco's vision of what he thinks an Esprit should look like . Its almost like Julian Thompson was thinking about a grown up more sophisticated S1 Elise when he was directing the C-X75 design. Interesting coincence that both the C-X75 and Esprit concepts were built in Coventry by the same outfit, Concept Group International.
  14. I always thought Paul Newsome would have made an excellent replacement for MJK when he retired as CEO of group Lotus. Glad his tallents were picked up by Jaguar, I am very much looking forwards to seeing the production version of the C-X75 .
  15. All I get from the Lamborghini ad is that it may be the best vehicle to flee from an apocalyptic event, possibly the big earthquake they are expecting to happen in California. What is possibly more horrifying (to me anyways) is a large percentage of Aventadors will be found chugging up and down Rodeo Drive. I personally think the car looks good enough to sell based on its appearance alone without the silly video.
  16. I get the impression that the new management is not interested in really listening to any of the opinions of the staff that has worked for Lotus for longer than a year, and the ones who may have previously raised the alarm are all to worried about loosing their jobs to risk upsetting the new CEO, who has a very focussed vision of where he thinks the company should go. Shoot the messenger? The Kings New Clothes? Just my opinion, just wanted to raise the possibility that thingspresently may be alot less democratic within the Lotus organisation than they once were .
  17. WayneB

    Hurrah!

    Yes I remember it well, the aluminium wings dent easily, and it had to go back to Newport Pagnell to be repaired, so I think he had the right to be angry with her. I saw the car 2 months ago at Aston-Martin works service in Newport Pagnell (the old factory building) and they had just finished the bio-fuel conversion. It was a very involved job (engine out , new pistons to lower the Compression ratio as it is a vantage spec car, bigger carb jets in the triple webers and replace all of the rubber lines in the fuel system etc) , but it was running pretty good when finished. Shame about the pongy smell of the exhaust now though! Nobody mentioned it would be used at the wedding BTW.
  18. The wheels are pronounced "Fooks" Congratulations on capturing the iconic automotive essence of the 80's stockbroker, sad to me how a good Coventry bloke could stray so far from his roots.
  19. I think the IPS Evora will be a pretty good seller in the USA (probably better than the manual version truth be told), but ATM Evora sales are rather slow in North America mainly due to the poor economy and /or the percieved high MSRP of the Evora over there, quite a few Lotus dealers have shut down or dropped their Lotus franchises leaving some areas with no representation. Also problems with the leather shrinking and pulling back on dashboards, bits of trim cracking or falling off and clutch problems havent helped Lotus build that "quality" image they need in the USA with the Evora(yet). I'm kind of puzzled at Bob Lutz being picked as a spokesman for Lotus as in the past he was never particulary fond of the marque and at times rather hostile towards it, but I guess they are paying him enough to sway his past views (in public anyways).
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