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Lotus Motorola Radio Cassette - The Complete Reference - Page 2 - Interior/Exterior/Lights/Glass/Electrical/Alarms/ICE - The Lotus Forums - Official Lotus Community Partner Jump to content


Lotus Motorola Radio Cassette - The Complete Reference

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This is what the dealer fit radio suppression kit looked like.


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Please let me know If you have a S1 esprit for sale 🙂

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According to Radio Museum, the Sharp RG-5800 radio cassette was manufactured in 1978/9 and the RG-5850 around 1980. This seems consistent with Matt’s account of the Sharp often being fitted to new S1 and S2 Esprits by Lotus dealerships.


I sent off the Sharp RG-5850 from JPS Esprit #40 to be refurbished by Steve at Revive Car Audio. He also fitted a socket that can take an auxiliary line input direct from an iPhone/iPod, as an alternative to the radio/cassette. This avoids signal degradation and gives a good quality sound output, limited only by my tired aftermarket speakers. (Bluetooth was another option.)


My challenge remains to track down the crossover unit as originally used (in the JPS) to split the RC output between the two door mounted speakers and the single under dashboard woofer. (My unit seems to be missing.) Then it could be back to the full 1970s sound experience…!

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On 21/01/2021 at 12:34, Matt-watts said:


Pic 1.jpg


Hi Matt, thanks for all the info. Bottom left of the photo above looks like a Motorola unit of the family that the "LT" units seem to have been. It would be interesting to know the model number on that one.

I also got my car with a Sharp unit fitted [RG9150] but Andy Graham wrote that the build record for it shows a Motorola unit being fitted at the factory. I made the jump to it being Lotus branded it seems, but maybe the one you have is a factory fitted Motorola!?

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I think your right George, I think the Lotus branded one also came later, I will ask Jake to look into our S2 archive and see if he come up with any more, we have never seen one in a S1. This is what my motorola looks like. It would have been old fashioned in the mid 70s not having FM, also the tape would have been hard to get in and out.



Please let me know If you have a S1 esprit for sale 🙂

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I think you're right and the Lotus branded ones were an '80's unit, but they look identical save for having the extra band, designated 'U' rather than 'FM'. To be honest I doubt the tape orientation would have been a consideration. Yours is definitely of the same family of radio cassette's as the later FM unit with 'Lotus' on the fascia, so likely the fabled LT551 or LT558.

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