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Exige Cup260 - Restoration and some tweaks


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Absolutely, the car is still on the original wheels in perfect condition. I always had to keep the originals it would be wrong without, but fancied having an alternative choice as a spare set.

If you'd like to talk let me know 👍

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Another boring update... When the car was stripped down over the winter it was clear that the heatshield had seen better days and picked up corrosion, they all seem to do this if they were driven in the wet in the early days. Mankiness:


General advice as it was covering stuff it just looked ugly but as you never see it, just ignore it. Taking that in mind I decided to replace the whole thing

I got some new nimbus and constructed a new version, with donor side parts from another car so it looked better, made sure the Spitfire toelink ends were properly covered, I'm sure they'd be fine but wanted to be sure



I also added some double layer on the bolts as these always seem to rip through


And here is the brace bar between the Spitfire Toelinks, which was a lovely milled piece by Ollie at Phoenix


2bular exhaust back on, and you can see the stainless diffuser brackets which should not dissolve like the OEM ones, will carbon wrap these to they are less obvious against the diffuser



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Needed to adjust the diffuser as the original owner didn't get it fitted quite right, so it was pulling the rear panel out of place, I just had to adjust the side panels back and forward a few MM, not sure why Reverie didn't get these right as they aren't exactly variable but there you go:


It took quite a few goes and lots of adjusting, but it now fits properly. Not sure why it wasn't done on original fit, but easier to bodge than do properly. Usual polishing and stuff to make it look nice


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Operation tidy up firmly underway…

No real mods to the engine bay since I decided to not fit the ProAlloy intercooler and cold air kit, keeping it OEM etc

So really it was a tart up as we'd already changed all the belts etc as part of the big service

Intercooler out to clean it and all that it blocks


Lots of scrubbing, dressing etc and it came up OK:



Then on to the removal of bits that I fitted and will never use in this car :(

Camera out first, before:




Seats back out again, so I can remove what was meant to be the extra sensor wiring:


SmartyCam recorder removed, it was down by drivers hip which seemed about the best place for anyone doing it. I also found that you can order just about any length of bullet cam cable, just order up a 50ohm cable with SMA connectors each end and it works great. You can make your owns for a few quid vs £80 from AiM and then you make them any length


Bulkhead and harness bar out to strip out the following (mainly as it can’t be used without the AiM dash and that never got fired up outside the garage):

Data Hub, SmartyCAM, CAN Channel extender, plus all relevant extensions for sensors into engine bay


Aux power feed, rear camera feeds remain as the next owner might want and I spent ages getting them all in and hidden away

Amazing how many nights were spent staring at the wiring trying to get it just right, all taken out in a few yours.

Next is to revert steering cowling and put back the OEM trim, as well as footcam (which works amazingly BTW, if a little dark due having less light with the rear window removed)






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Front half of the cabin now…


Shelf was trimmed with alcantara, easily removed as its tacked in with tape rather than glued but prefer the darker look, and stops stuff sliding about:


Trimmed the shelf ends as well (obviously kept untouched originals)


Spacer removed from steering wheel to get it all back to OEM, trimmed shroud and stereo control removed:


Will leave the alcantara wheel in as I much prefer the look over the original rubbish leather wheel, but I'll keep both in case

Foot cam removed, wiring and USB power has been left there but tucked out the way as it’s a useful feature to have.

Door cars removed, scrubbed then stain shielded - they has a bit of that sweet smell that was in the car and I wanted rid

Seats back in etc

Now everything back in and all good to go, quite a pointless exercise to install so many bits then remove, but that where we are And I suppose some regret that all the hard work on trimming wont be seen in all its glory. Excuse the less than great pics, it was very late:




What do we think rip the top half of the carpets back out and go with the half carpet half ali look of the S2? Personally I much prefer the look of all carpet, but don't know if that’s just cos I'm a weirdo





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So no detailed steps just various bits and bobs of reattaching bits, cable tying, roof on etc

Just to get to the point that it is a finished car, apart from needing two stickers on the rear clam, maybe a polish on the rear clam to make it flawless, but otherwise shes done

Might even go out in her, but we'll see don't want to be too rash



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So I wheeled the car out to take some photos and to have a wash - and I've got to say I am pretty pleased with where its ended up..

A few small adjustments made, but nothing major - all seems good. Far to say its still pretty raw as expected, but when you get about 30/40 MPH it just sort of comes together, hunkers down and comes alive - it’s a really very special car, very pleased.

A red car really needs to be outside to come to life:





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  • 5 weeks later...

Right, final update I think….

The final change I made was to replace the silver badging to black for the LOTUS and Exige sticker, badging was done myself but Devine Handcraft did the black Exige Decal

Looks pretty good with the general black and red theme:


I don't think I showed an interior shot before, as it was always in the middle of the night I worked on the car:


Then she was off to her new owner - I didn’t advertise her and all enquiries came I think from this build thread, and to lots of helpful Lotus owners who got the word out for me.

There was lots of interest, some faded away several were very interested but needed to sell first and it went quite for a bit, until a fellow Exige owner highlighted to someone who was considering a Elise 250Cup vs an 09 Cup260, that mine was around and should be considered - a deal was done and taking a huge leap of faith in doing a deal at distance, the car was sold - and soon heading up North to its new home

Unfortunately it was a wet day, which was a shame as you never like a new car day to be rainy one

But off she went to a very happy owner, hopefully he'll be on hear soon to update the thread as I think he has a few more things planned - and will actually drive it unlike me



So that’s the Cup260 restoration done, I scaled back plans at the end - but in the end I took what people said was an excellent condition car, into a properly excellent condition and in the end it was pretty good. Pictures never did it justice, so you'll have to take my word for it, but she was a cracking looking car by the time I said goodbye!

Great to end on the best Exige I ever owned!

After 6 Exiges, I guess my time with them is done - each one I drove less as life got in the way, strangely as kids got older they took up more and more time and effort and I could never make time for a drive, so time for a change Ito reignite the spark

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Congratulations on the sale, someone is getting one of the best Exige's around in your car! 

What's next?

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

For forum issues, please contact the Moderators. I will aim to respond to emails/PM's Mon-Fri 9-6 GMT. 

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Cheers @Bibs. It was great to see it all sorted and knowing I'd help prolong its life!

As for whats next, I genuinely have no idea! I'm sure I'll be inspired by something soon enough, but I know it has to either be either bonkers raw so it is a complete contrast to the M5 or supercar territory so it feels like a big achievement.

But no rush, I'll see what is out there. Not in the right frame of mind for driving at the moment, so will see what is out there when the passion is back 👍

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  • 4 months later...


Now that it's in my garage I guess I should disclose that I have bought this car! And, without having driven it more than 10 feet, due to a minor issue with private plate transfers and V5s, it seems totally lovely and a credit to the work Paul has done. It needs a service on time and has a stupidly loud larini clubsport on at the moment, which I'm going to swap back for a 2bular, but otherwise its an absolute honey. Carbon fibre absolutely everywhere. Oh my. I can't wait to get it on the road but it's going to have to wait to 2022 looking at the weather forecast! 

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Glad she's still putting smiles out there! Shame about the V5 but hopefully sorted soon, but like you say not great weather anyway. 


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  • 2 months later...

Trip to Bedford today, trying out my new 2bular H1 QP for noise. While fine on static at 94db, although testing at a 4.5k rev limit seemed very low to me,  89.2db on the driveby at 6.5k was less than ideal. Black flag plus warning, took it much more carefully the rest of the day without further issues. Hopefully Jim will get me the add on silencer in the next week or so. I knew it was a risk without the add on and I was happy to manage it. Still saw 130 indicated on the back straight and it's wonderful in the corners. The lack of weight is noticeable everywhere after the heavy V6 cars.

Otherwise, that's the first long day of driving under the wheels. It's an epic car, properly well sorted as a driving experience. Pretty comfortable on long distance cruise and, while loud in the cabin, the radio is clear and a set of earplugs gets rid of the wind noise. Could do with a new set of boots I think, 09 stamped r1rs on the front didn't get as sticky as I would have expected and i didnt have as much confidence on the brakes or on turn in. Probably still worth using up the rears though before changing all 4 for something more modern and sticky. Couple of niggles- a rattle from the drivers seat, think its the runners as usual - and a 'cubby hole' in the dash on the passenger side where the tags that slot in the dash have gone brittle with age and snapped off. Need to find a way to fix it as it's hanging open and annoying me, though Hangar 111 have already had a go, and obtained a quote for a new one from lotus. Just the 500 quid plus vat! 

To be clear, I haven't bought this car to lock away in a garage as an investment. I'm planning to use it properly, enjoy it fully and can't see myself moving it on unless it damages my hearing! There wasn't a car at Bedford today that i would've swapped it with (even the lovely 420 final edition).




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Very nice Will. I'm sure it'll be a revelation on new tyres too but good to see it being used as intended. 

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

For forum issues, please contact the Moderators. I will aim to respond to emails/PM's Mon-Fri 9-6 GMT. 

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  • 2 months later...

Great evening at Snetterton this week Got some proper heat into the R1Rs and they really performed. The car was epic again - she's not the most civilised of places to be if you are just pootling around even with all the improvements but it all makes sense once you get on it. 

Have picked up a couple of stone chips now but such is life. Ppf is generally doing the job though.


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