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eeyoreish

Help to identify this Turbo Esprit

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I need the help of you G car experts out there to tell me as much as possible about the car in the photos below please.

When I was a kid, my dad ran a small garage and recovery business in Bolton and one of the things he recovered after an accident was this car, a white Turbo Esprit, registration 'AN12'. It had spun on the A580 'East Lancs Road' I seem to recall. I'm a bit sketchy on the date this photo was taken but I believe it was most likely around 1984, no later.

This car was a major factor in fuelling my love for the Esprit and I can recall to this day sitting in it where these photos were taken and just thinking 'wow'. I knew right then that one day I had to have one. Now up until recently this car has existed only as a memory in my head but recently my cousin (who now runs my Dad's old garage business) turned up these old photos, exactly as I remembered it. A pretty special moment seeing it again!

Now I know a bit more about Esprits than I did back then, looking at these photos has raised lots of questions, not least why it is sporting what look like Essex style side decals... 

I'd like to know as much as possible about this car, things such as:

What exact model year is it?

Why does it have those decals? Was someone just trying to make it look a bit like an Essex car or some other reason?

Could it be an Essex spec dry sump car?

Does anyone know if the car still exists now? Does anyone on here own it??

These photos have got me very curious so any info will be gratefully received! Thanks.

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IMG_1086.thumb.JPG.016e51fa1e45cc2fac6d6117bfdec5b7.JPG

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It's a real shame you don't have any pictures of the side or rear of the car. The easiest external indications of its age would be the 4 stud compomotives and a single support for the tailgate louvers.

Unless anyone knows the car personally, it'll be a challenge to correctly identify it. I can say for sure that its prior to 1985 as it has the triangular finisher for the capping rail. :)

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Couldn’t be Jonny’s (Dr Pittenstein - @The Pits) car by some small chance? Here’s a blog on the car and it had Essex decals before his ownership.......🤔 Was it a full leather or half leather interior car?

https://www.thelotusforums.com/latest-news/blogs/pride-joy-1981-lotus-turbo-esprit/

D8E23A28-7D61-40D8-91D8-4F54F2B97084.jpeg

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These are the only photos I have unfortunately. I guessed it was pre 85 too by the triangles, the same as on my '84 TE. Honestly can't remember if it was full leather or had the roof stereo as this was probably 33 years ago 😳

Really interesting to see @The Pits car in its earlier days. Either this is another white 'half Essex' liveried car or its the same one, although if the history in the article you linked to is correct it doesn't seem to fit with an owner living up North when the car was only a few years old.

Now I just have even more questions!

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 Unfortunately, I can't help you identify that car but wanted to ask you a question about the two really nice Esprit's you own. Without wishing to reignite the G v S debate, if you had to let one go, which would be the keeper and why?

Brendan

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Both, but at the moment I'd choose the Stevens because it's the one that's running and on the road. In the future who knows but I think the TE will be top dog.

Now, back on topic, who knows anything about AN12..?

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It's got the aerial on the drivers side suggesting that it's an early Turbo. I'd guess a 1981 or 82 car. 

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It has the early indicators as well.

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Does the rear wheel look a little too shiny to be a BBS wheel? Looks like a compomotive. Same shot, the front looks like it might be a compomotive.

That would put it 1981/2 'ish too 

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Well the plate is still about on a seat leon according to the dvla. Pity there isnt an easy way to contact the owner. 

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If I had the current reg numbers or chassis numbers of all the white dry sump cars it should be possible to HPI check them, which should show up all previous plates they've been on. @The Pits car must be on a different plate now as SAV176X isn't registered with the DVLA at all.

One potential issue is this was the pre online 80s and it's possible that number plate was never 'officially' on that car. Wouldn't be the first time more than one car was running round on the same number...

My hope is that one of the white dry sump owners here has enough history of their car to know if this is their car or not. I'd just love to know where it is now.

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Interestingly it looks like it only has the Essex stripe without the Essex logo so I suspect an owner add-on as the striping was available to buy. Looks like red leather to me....

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I reckon that it may well be Jonny;s car, as how many white with Essex stripes cars were there - and I wouldn't have thought the there were no wet sumps with the stipes.

However, I think there is a twist. It was on Compomotives, but the accident was so bad that the owner had to switch them all to BBS, and then when Jonny bought it he switched it back to Compomotives :thumbsup:

So calling @The Pits

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Yes, Essex stripes without the branding. What are the chances that back in the day, when the car was just 2 or 3 years old an owner would obtain and fit the Essex style stripes but without the name. Back in those days I assume the factory would be the only place you could get them anyway?

I agree it looks like full leather judging by what looks like reflection off the centre panels of the seat backs.

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IIRC correctly ( and happy to be corrected!) The Essex stripes are just that - stripes with the Essex logo then laid over the top............... Bazza / Steve T?

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On 26/05/2019 at 22:13, eeyoreish said:

My '84 has the aerial on the drivers side too...

Just to confuse matters, my 84 TE has the aerial on the passenger side!

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Aha! So I don't have the identical car then...🙂 

Mine (or the hole where I took it off) is definitely on the drivers side. Maybe you have a continental shell?

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2 hours ago, Kevin Wheeler said:

Just to confuse matters, my 84 TE has the aerial on the passenger side!

Not that it matters at all, but there was a significant update in 84 when the revised chassis was introduced (trunnions deleted & roll bar no longer used as the lower suspension link).  If yours has the later chassis, that may also be the point in time they were swapped.

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4 hours ago, Kevin Wheeler said:

 

Just to confuse matters, my 84 TE has the aerial on the passenger side!

So does mine but i also have trunnions on the front, old style wing mirrors and colour coded bumpers. 

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I have trunnions and aerial on the drivers side. No logic here unless there were 2 guys with drills, one on each side and whoever got there first... Anyone got an aerial both sides?

Of course none of this is helping me to Identify AN12

  • Haha 1

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I used to own a dry sump Turbo with the Essex stripes but not logo. It was originally purchased by an owner in the North of England but was sold to Fred Davies who ran a Lotus service agent in Richmond, Surrey, who I bought it from in 1985. It had BBS wheels.

The one thing that doesnt match is the mirrors were white. But its possible they were painted white after the above picture was taken.

Reg was WNG 37X.

Currently shown as exported on DVLA.

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No, I dont think that was the one I owned, as it has Compomotives and the full Essex logo. 

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