free hit
counters
Ebay(USA) - 1983 Turbo 'Special Edition' - Ebay UK - The Lotus Forums Jump to content


Ebay(USA) - 1983 Turbo 'Special Edition'


Recommended Posts


Upgrade today to remove Google ads and support TLF.
  • Replies 7
  • Created
  • Last Reply

Top Posters In This Topic

Could well have been a promotional tool. Lotus was re-entering the US market in 1983, trying to re-establish it's self and it needed Investors. Lotus almost went bust in 1983 (when American Express withdrew its financial backing) and was rescued by David Wickens (The then Executive Chairman) with the financial help of British Car Auctions and Toyota.

Can't see why it would make that Turbo Esprit more valuable / collectable though. More worryingly it doesn't sound like it's had a new cambelt since 2003 :cheers:!

Link to post
Share on other sites
Could well have been a promotional tool. Lotus was re-entering the US market in 1983, trying to re-establish it's self and it needed Investors. Lotus almost went bust in 1983 (when American Express withdrew its financial backing) and was rescued by David Wickens (The then Executive Chairman) with the financial help of British Car Auctions and Toyota.

Can't see why it would make that Turbo Esprit more valuable / collectable though. More worryingly it don't sound like it's had a new cambelt since 2003 :cheers:!

Mark,

Sometimes i just wait for you to answer on threads like this. And if it's a 70's design

question then i'm watching to see if it's you or Mark Britten that gets there first!

:D

Link to post
Share on other sites

Lotus was looking for investors to help re-enter the US market. People who invested a certain amount (I think it was $150,000 USD, but I'm not sure) got one of these cars. These were the first (official) 50 Turbo Esprits in the U.S.

What was special about them is that the engines were blueprinted at the factory, and all of the detailed technical information was provided with the car. Also, I believe they had sunroofs or glass sunroofs (something like that), which was not yet an option on Turbo Esprits, although I'm not 100% sure of all of this.

Most of them were red, silver, or white, or some combination thereof. There is a gold one that has been for sale in Canada a few times. I heard that there are a couple of black ones, but I'd want some verification from Lotus that this is one of them, and not just an 83 TE with a decal on it!

When dealers and resellers offer these cars, they always try to pump them up as something incredibly special. The balanced engine, assuming it hasn't been rebuilt, is the only thing of extra value I see in these cars, unless you like early/low production numbers. I see these akin to the unique blue 308s that some Ferrari dealership owners got in the late 70s; that's nice, but . . . so what?

- Tony

Edited by Tony K

Tony K. :)

 

Esprit S1s #355H & 454H

Esprit S2.2  #324J

1991 Esprit SE

Link to post
Share on other sites

That's interesting Tony. I've had a look through all the old Lotus World magazines from 1983 and there's no mention of Lotus doing a promotional Federal Esprit. So my guess is this was instigated by the US dealers or the distributers, British Performance Car Imports.

Also it says BPCI ordered

Link to post
Share on other sites

Mark,

I think the 250 cars you are referring to are the regular production 1983 (or 1984 model year) Turbo Esprits. I don't know if these 50 are included or not; if they are, they are probably the cars delivered to the people who funded the startup of BPCI.

Also, I don't know if this comes into play or not, but keep in mind that for the U.S., a "1983" car could have been built as early as spring of 1982; in the U.S., a car delivered in May of a given year is sometimes designated as the following year. For cars built May-July, it happens occasionally; anything August or later is almost always the next model year.

Example: My blue S1 was built in September 1977, but it is a "1978" car here in the States, regardless of when first titled/registered.

(But being built in January, those are most likely 1983 model year cars)

As for these special edition Esprits, they are fairly well-known among long-time U.S. Lotus enthusiasts, and are more commonly referred to as the "investor cars" or "investors' special editions". I always found the lack of any mention of them in a Lotus/Esprit book curious, but I always understood that the home (UK) market comes first, that's also typically who the author is writing for, and the U.S. distribution is always treated as an afterthought, with an occasional mention here and there.

Tony K. :)

 

Esprit S1s #355H & 454H

Esprit S2.2  #324J

1991 Esprit SE

Link to post
Share on other sites

Lotus received the road worthness certificate from for the Federal Turbo Esprit at the end of May 1983. There's a chance there could have been 50 cars delivered before hand, but they wouldn't have been able to drive them. I'll scan the article tommorow and you can have a look :thumbup:.

Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.




×
×
  • Create New...