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Peter H.

1988 Esprit HC/NA

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Hiya, its me again. Sorry to be posting again so soon.

Im following up a lead by Chris on my previous thread. He mentioned THIS car from a reputable Lotus garage.

I spoke to the garage owner who brought it from the previous owner 5 year's . The previous owner had had the car from 6 months old. The history is very good, with regular usage, and the car was actually looked after by the current owners garage for most of it's life.

The only concern I have is the current owner said that in 2008 they replaced the chassis for the previous owner as it received some damage to the near side front. At the time, they also replaced all the suspension along with other stuff. They have a full photographic record of the work and it was not an insurance job, so there is no hpi record. 

So it's fair to say the chassis numbers will not match. How much of any issue is this? I know its a fairly common and accepted practice for older Lotus cars (e.g the Elan), but is this the case with Esprits......or am I going to have trouble selling this car in the future?

Penny for your thoughts?

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It’s an Esprit. Matching numbers just doesn’t appear to be an issue - it’s not an e-type jag 👍

try buying an early V8 with matching engine numbers - think most of them had the engines swapped very early on in life.

seriously though - it’s not a turbo - and the turbo whoosh is simply amazing :thumbsup:. Many folks love the NA to be fair and balanced.


Only here once

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1 hour ago, Barrykearley said:

seriously though - it’s not a turbo - and the turbo whoosh is simply amazing :thumbsup:. Many folks love the NA to be fair and balanced.

My first two Esprits were NAs & they were superb but once you've tried a turbo you'll never go back. :thumbup:

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Cheers,

John W

http://jonwatkins.co.uk

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@Peter H. I know this car, it is lovely and has wanted for nothing, in fact was talking to the current owner only a few days a go. If you are still interested it is well worth a look and test drive.

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Thanks John/Barry,

Its a big leap for me to buy something like an Esprit.......in fact I nearly dropped the whole Esprit idea last week as to ambitious both in terms of time and money.  

The relative simplicity of the NA is probably more within my comfort zone. I also like the clean lines of the car and the first thing I'd probably do is remove the spoiler (its not standard anyway).

I guess everyone has pretty much the same list of reasons for wanting a Lotus Esprit, but I suspect we all prioritise them in a different order. Mine would go something like this..........

  1. I'm 6'1", so I need the sunroof for the extra couple of inches headroom....that rules out S1, S2 and many S3 cars
  2. I like old cars. Having a car with wings from the 1990's just seems to recent for me. I was taken out in a 1995 S4S last week....blistering, but it felt and looked like a modern car.
  3. The car needs to be really well sorted with a very good history and regular usage
  4. I'm pretty fussy on the colour.....basically it needs to be white or blue

There are very few cars around that meet just this criteria, without adding in a Turbo requirement.....as good as it might be.

Thanks Marc, I'm going to see it in the next couple of days.

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I changed numerous chassis on S1 Esprit back in the 90s. Well, I paid someone to do it. I don't recall that the chassis are stamped with a chassis number from the factory but others may have more info on this. As long as it is a Lotus chassis, there is no issue and certainly it did not and does not seem to affect the values of the early Esprits, the chassis of which do rot as they were  not galvanised until the S2.2.

I do have an issue with non-Lotus chassis, which some 60s/70s Europa's and Elan's seem to have and I think that would soften the value of a car. I had a Spyder chassis Europa once; never again. It was not terrible but I realised I need to be driving a car with a chassis by Lotus; to me, that is the point of driving a Lotus. 

Mind you, I don't even like after-market suspension. I removed GAZ ones on my Elise for Lotus approved ones, so perhaps I am not the norm.

I am 6'2 and a bit and have never had an issue with driving any Esprit. Or a 60s Europa. 

Justin

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If you do a bit of engine work, fit a good exhaust system and mapped igintion you can move it close to a turbo ( without the wooosh😁).  You do get a nice induction roar as a bonus.  My old one  is up for sale in Ireland http://www.prestige.ie/viewanad.php?ad_id=2207580&r=   .  I sold it a few years back ( without the wanabe spoiler).  It had about £15k worth of parts  on it right the way through in depth not a tart up. The engine alone was £5k from lotusbits   Its gone up from 18k pounds  to 28k euros. He may have had it painted  which might account for the uplift in price.  Its been up for 2-3 months.

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Nothing wrong with an N/A, I have one!

I've driven a G Turbo for comparison and sure it has more pull and 'longer legs' but the N/A isn't slow and most of the time you're not blasting from 0-60 anyway. When you're cruising who else knows the difference?

Probably shouldn't mention then that bought a G Turbo project to fulfil a childhood dream...🙄


Not worth starting anything now...🍺

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Congrats Peter! I'm sure you'll have a lot of fun driving it (or even just looking at it). Be prepared to be impressed. 😉

Filip


I have made many mistakes in my life. Buying a multiple Lotus is not one of them.

 

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I bought a NA for the same reasons, (no turbo,no spoilers,glass top, cleaner look)  I wanted the old style (also known as the G-esprit)  the better chassis, bigger motor so ended up with the s3 as well.    good luck with the car!   btw it was much easier to find a turbo then an NA back then (2011)  is that still the case? 

 

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Hi Rick, I do love the old style G-Esprit, probably more than the Stevens car, but good ones are hard to come by....no one wants to sell them!!

My the car arrives on Monday....better get the garage ready. The only dilemma is whether to remove the SE spoiler that was added later. When I saw it in person, I didn't mind it half as much as I thought I would.

As far as Stevens Esprit's go, between 1987 and 1990, I think there were 1207 Turbo's sold vs. 268 NA's sold. Which might explain why they are harder to come by. 

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Its personal opinion but for me  wacking a spoiler on it looks a bit  wanabe  se.   Its very clean and unclutterd in its original form and better for it. The only thing I did was replace the no plate surround for a later one without the ribs.  Mine even had the deep dish se wheels when I bought it but swapped them back to originals.

DSC04239.JPG

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Hello Peter, congrats on your 88 purchase. I liken the Stevens design to the S1. Flowing lines with no unnecessary scopes or wings / spoilers.  I am fortunate to own both models, when side by side you can really see the purity in each design. My 88 is currently undergoing recommissioning but my S1 is fully sorted. The little I have driven my 88, maybe 50 miles, you just know it’s all round a much better engineered and constructed car. Night and day in-fact. Good luck with the car, just remember in time of frustration they all have their own eccentricities and once sorted are so rewarding to own.


Cheers, Gavin

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Congratulations Peter, welcome to the emotional experience that is esprit ownership.

If you get used to the performance and want more you can always upgrade bits as mdw says or simply trade it for a turbo.

personally I’d be tempted to change the ignition from dizzy to ecu mappable relatively soon but each to their own.

On another plus note - all the hours I’ve spent looking at cars that I don’t need, can’t afford or both has finally resulted in something positive 😂 👍

 

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Thanks Chris, I had the car dyno tested last week and it record 144hp.

The quoted hp of an x180 NA is 172hp I believe, so its a fair bit short of that even without modification. The next check is a compression test, but I am in no rush to improve performance. I priced in an engine recondition at some point in the next few years.

I'd be interested in reading more about the pros/cons of switching an NA to an ECU.....and perhaps what is involve. If you know of any posts, please let me know.

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Also, thanks Gavin.

My thinking exactly......I'd have loved an S1,2,3....but for the condition I wanted, I gave up trying to find one within my budget.

I'm really please with my purchase, I can't believe the how it turns heads!

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@mdw did some very useful upgrades to his X180 :thumbup:


88 Esprit NA, 89 Esprit Turbo SE, Evora, Evora S, Evora IPS, Evora S IPS, Evora S IPS SR, Evora 400, Elise S1, Elise S1 111s, Evora GT410 Sport

Evora NA

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