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Should I buy an Exige/Evora or keep my R32 GT-R


Shak

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Hi,

I've come for some advice and insight into Lotus ownership. Hoping folks on here can help.

I currently have a couple of cars and driving none of them as I work from home most of the time (even pre-covid) and the weathers just rubbish at the moment. My daily and impulse buy aside the prized asset in my collection is my 1990 R32 GT-R which I personally imported it myself from Japan and have owned for 6 years now,. Prior to that I had an R34 Skyline which I dailyed to work for several years. Now, the 32 has been the one car I always knew I wanted and its amazing, it never disappoints. Annoys me that I don't drive it enough but when I do take it for a spin it reminds me of why I have it. 

However, I keep looking at others (as you do) but more so Lotus as I've always wanted an Esprit; but old cars have old car issues and 1 old car is more than I need to worry about. That brings me to Evoras and Exiges and having been to Silverstone the other week and to Beaulieu this weekend its not helping! They're were some great examples on display at the classic.

Both cars being more modern/newer and still forced induction is somthing that attracts me to them. I know I need to fo test drive them (which I am planning to do), but I would love to get some of the owners insights on if I should switch from my 32. Espeicailly if you've owned or driven an R32.

FYI - one of these will be for sale

05 Subaru Legacy Estate 2.5i NA - Beater wagon, could sell it now for more than I payed for it. Absolute workhorse and totally fautless but so boring to drive!

07 Nissan Stagea Autech Axis (PM35) 3.5V6 NA RWD - Impulse buy! Super nice, best engine and setup for these being RWD and 1 of only 30 made in this spec and colour (black). Just a bit too nice for what I need an estate for and I have disrespectful young children who just want to f*ck shit up.  

Thanks

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Hi Shak,

There might be some people on here that have had a 32, I'm not sure. I am pretty sure that everyone is going to tell you to test drive the Lotus and then you will have to make the decision yourself.

It is not really a decision that other people can make for you.

I would suggest that you are looking at very different cars between the 32 and either of the Lotus.

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All we know is that when they stop making this, we will be properly, properly sad.Jeremy Clarkson on the Esprit.

Opinions are like armpits. Everyone has them, some just stink more than others.

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R32 gtr seem to still be in their appreciation curve so it might not yet be time. Also consider it might cost more to buy back in down the road.

 

My brother has a really nice R32 gtr which he has spent a fortune on but it's now gotten to the point he is afraid to use it due to potential risk of damage or failure. Each time he tries to drive it hard it finds a new minute fault or problem. He ends up tracking his wife's Tesla instead. 

 

The lotus on the other hand, you will be able to use it reliably and drive it hard without concern of failure (as often). 

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On 11/08/2021 at 11:28, r3nault said:

Nah, I'll just go out there and say, BUY A LOTUS.

"I regret buying a Lotus" is something no one said, ever. ;)

lol, not 100% yet but you never know.

 

On 12/08/2021 at 23:08, TTim said:

R32 gtr seem to still be in their appreciation curve so it might not yet be time. Also consider it might cost more to buy back in down the road.

 

My brother has a really nice R32 gtr which he has spent a fortune on but it's now gotten to the point he is afraid to use it due to potential risk of damage or failure. Each time he tries to drive it hard it finds a new minute fault or problem. He ends up tracking his wife's Tesla instead. 

 

The lotus on the other hand, you will be able to use it reliably and drive it hard without concern of failure (as often). 

The prices are certainly crazy. I doubt I'd be able to get back into one if I sold it, but if I did sell it I wouldn't want to go back either. I do remember when you could have had one for 5k worse still is when R34 GTRs were going for 25k about 10 years ago and now you need to look upwards of 80k!  I do keep thinking maybe just sit on the car for a few more years and let the prices keep on increasing. 

Mines is only lightly modified (still scary quick) and i've not invested massivley into it, however it did get a full body respray (windows out job) and wheel refurb last year and I'm probably going to get it mapped and upgrade the injectors before the end of this year. Here's a couple of pics of it.  One even next to a Lotus. 

20210530_162811.thumb.jpg.e5c1931c4dbeec76fb396d3b7a303448.jpg

Its got a MOT due this week, which gets done at Miller Autocare in Epsom so, I think I may be swinging by Bell & Coalville on the way back home once its done. 

I need to test drive and go sit on a Lotus. If it scares me as much as the 32 does when driving it, it could swing  the decision. 

20210418_173622.jpg

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My brother drove my exige 390 on the weekend and was pretty amazed, in particular how quick and well behaved it was compared to his car. His has aftermarket turbos, ecu, injectors, exhaust, r34 gtr 6 speed, coilovers, aftermarket control arms and r34 brakes but the Exige does everything so much tidier. While his is building boost and wheelspinning, the exige is gone.

 

We have done a few short track events (his gtr, my fiesta st daily) and he is always having to watch temps, oil pressure etc which is one more thing to think about instead of just driving. 

 

 

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I can toally relate to that. Especially with the oil pump and oil starvation issues that will kill your engine. 

 

Does he find it a hard/diffficult drive? I mean, its great to drive, but when you get out I always feel like I've done a days graft (Physically and Mentally). I've never had it with any other car. Its really quite odd. 

 

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I think as awesome as Skylines are, they are a handful - I did a day at Brands years ago and my (lightly tuned) Mini was giving them lots of trouble, especially when it started to drizzle.

i handed it over to my ex-touring car racer buddy and he promptly dispatched the 500bhp fire breathing one that I’d not been able to get past 🤣

I do love an involving (read: challenging) car to drive (I have a DeLorean) but you don’t always want one! The inherent ride/handling/balance of a Lotus means the car does a lot of the hard work for you. 

image.jpeg.c6d49986d462a60d966e5cdcd7c18a6d.jpeg

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  • Gold FFM

I do agree with Ramjet that you are the only one who can make a decision.

My experience with Lotus is with an Evora N/A and Elise 111S S2.  

I miss the Evora a lot.  It a great drivers car and very comfortable.  It also looks better in the flesh. If I had the Evora still I would drive the Evora on any long drive over the Elise.

Elise - Similar platform to the Exige but with out the V6.  I love my Elise and it's my daily drive too.  I do have a BMW 335i but I drive the Elise more frequnalty because its just a better drivers car.  I have a trip to Wales soon for a business meeting and will likely take the Elise.  6hrs there and 6hrs back. Motorway will be loud but the B roads will be a blast.  

I would be interested for any Exige V6 to comment on what the car sound like on a motorway. I guessing be a V6 the sound is much nicer to listen too.  The Elise Rover Engine is just a noise at a constant speed. Quite draining. I would think that the V6 exige would be much more pleasant.  But check.  The Evora I can say is very pleasant and comfortable on long journeys.

Getting in and out of an Elise will be the same as an Exige.  So if this is of any concern you will be fine. I'm 6foot and a bit rounder than I would like and get in and out fine.  Car parks are no issue.  Evora all fine for getting in and out but the 400 on like a normal car.  The earlier Evoras I found in car parks I would have to think about the space I left for getting out as the width of the car and the door seal made exiting a bit challenging at time.  


I hope that helps.

 

All the Best

Greg

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On 10/08/2021 at 23:13, Shak said:

I've always wanted an Esprit; but old cars have old car issues and 1 old car is more than I need to worry about.

I've had my Esprit since 1987 - used regularly, no real issues, and when I wanted to get a 4-seater Lotus for the family, I looked an Evora as I didn't want to buy another 30 year old car. The family couldn't fit into the Evora, so I bought a 24 year old Excel. Used 2-3 times a week, again no real issues.

I'd go with your "I've always wanted an Esprit" :thumbsup:

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  • Gold FFM

Likewise, I've only had my 1987 Esprit since the start of the year so nothing like the long ownership of Chris to compare with, but no issues yet in 1500 miles of usage, both crawling around London in endless traffic and on proper drives! I'd similarly wanted one and looked at them for years, kept convincing myself I didn't need one, looked at other more modern cars, but eventually took the plunge during COVID.

Personally I think the "old car" reputation (for pretty much any old car) tends to come when they are sat in a garage for 99% of their life unused, and then suddenly expected to be perfect on the odd sunny day they are driven. If you use it regularly and maintain it, there's no real reason it shouldn't be as (or more) reliable than a far more complicated modern car.

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Thanks for eveyones views. I did swing by Bell and Covill on the way back from getting the MOT on the 32 (It passed, but it may a bit of a leaky rear diff whhich will get looked at later this month). I didn't have time for a test drive as was tight for time. They have a lovely 380 sport available and other one incoming and I'll be going back in for a test drive in a couple of weeks but I think I'll be holding on to the 32 until next year. I've got a bit of unfinished business with it and want to get that out of my system before deciding to let go. However, I will tet drive the 380 to see if it definelty what I want to go for one.  

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