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Top Gear Supercar for 10G challange


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Hi all

Well I have just enjoyed another episode of Top Gear. &, for those who didn't get to see it tonight (It will be of course repeated on BBC2 at 7 PM on Tuesday) Their challenge was to buy a Mid engine super car for 10 grand. Then complete some simple set tasks.

The choices were a Maserati Merac V6(with 'G' car Citroen Gearbox), a Ferrari +2 V8) & Lamborghini V8 (sorry didn't catch the models). All were nice looking cars, I might add, that should have been kicking out about 200 Bhp, however non of them were by all acounts.

I have to say I was a little pleased to see them being not as reliable, and to have more then their fair share of some familiar traits as a Lotus, despite our reputation for 'Lots of trouble Usually Serious'. A stigma that many like to continually remind us about. I did also note that some of the cars seamed not as well cared for which I think didn't help the selected cars reputation either.

It was good to see the Citroen Gearbox in the Merak hold out, esp after the blast round Castle Comb, However, yes I did note the car was only producing half of its potential power & ended up in a hedge with a blown engine (or was that just down to Clarkson's driving), some 10g rebuild that turned out to be. Just think what a bargain the esprit is when you can rebuild one of our engines for about half of that and would probably last longer.

My verdict, a reasonable sorted esprit (not necessarily mint) would have been well up for the challenge that was set & I think would have made it to the end & won the challenge.

There we are, thought I would open a topic & see where it leads.

Daz

B)

The need for speed can be found with a Lotus

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The lambo was a Urraco

the Fezza was a 308 GT4

Personally I loved the Maseratti, even though it turned out to be the dog of the bunch. Just such a beautiful car.

Jez

Mean Green S4s

I think therefore I am - Descartes

I'm pink therefore I'm spam - Eric Idle

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Another well put together show. :P

I did get a bit excited when they introduced the show saying that tonight they would be buying 3 Ol' supercars for under 10k - just for a second I thought there was going to be a nice shiny Esprit there. Then they mentioned the word 'Italian'.

Oh well. As usual a good laugh - especially the exploding engine. :P

Can't wait till next week - Fastest car in the world being driven across Europe by Mr. Looney himself. Top Stuff - Top Gear :D:P:)

Simon  (94 S4)      My Esprit will be for sale in late 2017

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I saw this tonight, and agree the Esprit would have been well in there B)

I don't like these challenges they do, especially when they pick cars such

as these three (cars that i actually kinda like), i knew how the challenge

would end...

:P

Seems pretty brainless to take a car like the merak (a car that would be

much loved had an enthusiast beat them to it), and then ignore the sounds

of that engine literally crying for help - until it's completely destroyed for the

sake of a laugh at its knackered guts.

:P

I know it would not make good telly to just pull up and say 'thats it',

but watching exotics being destroyed like this, Why don't they just

turn a countach into a monster truck and drive it over some Esprits

or something?, then we can all have a right laugh...

:D

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Ironically this month's 'Classic Car' mag front cover story is a supercar for less than 10k - and they chose an Esprit Turbo :P

Was dashing by in Tesco's so only had a quick glance at the article. Few dodgy facts (as usual!) but seemed pretty positive - certainly more so than than the TG cars faired.

May: DON'T hit it with a hammer!

Clarkson: Why?

May: Cause it's the tool of a pikey.

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Personally I loved the Maseratti, even though it turned out to be the dog of the bunch. Just such a beautiful car.

I agree. A fantastic car. It was great to see those cars this evening, however a shame the Presenters seemed to mocking them (and racing them against a Diesel Astra). The cars were almost 30 years old, they're luck to still be going. The Producer of the program must have known after a spirited ride around Castle Combe, there'd be some good TV (watching the cars falling apart).

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The problem with TopGear is that they have it in for neo-classics...

They love old Jaguar E-Types, Astons, (the established and recognised) preserved classics and they love the new stuff as well, but constantly dismiss the 70s and 80s cars... slamming them for being unreliable and with tricky handling - they apply a modern day set of evaluation principles to cars from 20 or 30 years ago, quite often before fuel-injection had been invented and whilst microchips were nothing short of a silicon valley madman's dream... they judge them unfairly and without cause...

But I too was heartened to see the big three: (donkey, bull & trident) all succumb to the same problems that everyone slams the Esprit for - proves that the maintenance war isn't about marque necessarily, but about the fact that decent exotics, made by hand are by nature fallible, and that thereby liable to fail now and again...

Would have been even nicer to see an S2 in there and make it all the way to Reading tho! :P

EspritMiltonKeynes - ironically now lives in Edinburgh London (SE4)

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Didn't see the programme - working! - but did go to MPH'05 at Earls Court; intending to see the CAV GT40 (which wasn't there) ... Did see Clarkson et al. sliding about the place with a modicum of skill - used to quite like Top Gear, but the presenters reveal almost zero mechanical sympathy; blowing up a Maserati engine when it's quite obvious (from previous posts) it was saying STOP very loudly ought to be a capital offence. Some bloke has put a lot of care and effort into building that engine, it's up to the driver to take care of it and respect the engine builders efforts. See how you drive once you've built it yourself!

I'm beginning to think they're a bunch of pr--s, overinflated egos etc.etc.

Although Clarkson has the right idea on bus lanes, snipers on motorway bridges for slow drivers and so on!

Scientists investigate that which already is; Engineers create that which has never been." - Albert Einstein

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No mention yet of plucky Ellen McArthur who was this weeks Star in a Reasonably Priced Car'. Before the clip she said she felt she could do better and begged the producer to let her have one more lap, but he said no as it was getting dark. You could tell from the clip she was driving smoothly - and yes she went to the top of the board as the fastest person in the series to date.

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I don't like these challenges they do, especially when they pick cars such

as these three (cars that i actually kinda like), i knew how the challenge

would end...

:P

Seems pretty brainless to take a car like the merak (a car that would be

much loved had an enthusiast beat them to it), and then ignore the sounds

of that engine literally crying for help - until it's completely destroyed for the

sake of a laugh at its knackered guts.

Too right. And of course if they HAD included an Esprit, it would not have been a really mint S2 for about

In the garage no-one can hear you scream 

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The Merak probably dropped a valve, the 2.8 litre V6 Maserati engine has sodium cooled exhaust valves and they are a load of aggro. :P

Glad everyone realises the Esprit isnt any worse than some of its competion of its era. :P

They all have the kind of build quality that would send our Ti*g*n into a hissy fit tirade :D

Especially love the Urracos styling, but would take any of them if for some reason I couldnt own an Esprit :P

Wish I could have seen the show :)

Edited by WayneB
SUNP0003-1.jpg
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The Merak probably dropped a valve, the 2.8 litre V6 Maserati engine has sodium cooled exhaust valves and they are a load of aggro. :P

What about sodium filled exhaust valves being an aggrevation?

The Esprit Turbo, at least 88-95 S4s all have sodium filled exhaust valves and silicon-bronze valve guides. No problem there, in fact I wouldn't run a turbo car without them (Esprit V8 :P )

Travis

Vulcan Grey 89SE

 

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The Merak probably dropped a valve, the 2.8 litre V6 Maserati engine has sodium cooled exhaust valves and they are a load of aggro. :P

Glad everyone realises the Esprit isnt any worse than some of its competion of its era. :P

They all have the kind of build quality that would send our Ti*g*n into a hissy fit tirade :P

Especially love the Urracos styling, but would take any of them if for some reason I couldnt own an Esprit :D

Wish I could have seen the show :)

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>

The Merak threw a bigend, straight through the sump. Ooops. Lets see the same again with a brit, french and german.

Caught between a rock and a hard place in a catch 22 situation, So its 6 of one and half a dozen of the other. Your damned if you do, but your damned if you don't so shut your cock!!!!!!!!!!!

Lotus Espirt Turbo S3    

Lotus Esprit S4 

Lotus Elise S2 Sport 130

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I cant see what they proved the fact that they got the cars for the price they did meant that they was not in top condition and needed some work. If you take any car thats seen better days, and has not been cared for then frash it around a track your going to have trouble of some sort.

But when there is a problem you normally fix it, you don't keep on driving especially when you can not hear your self talk because the engine is knocking so much.

When they show cars in a responsible way then its a good program but when they act like spoilt little kids that just bust up there toys just because they can then it just annoys me. :P

Ray

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The choices were a Maserati Merac V6(with 'G' car Citroen Gearbox),

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>

Are you sure about that? I know they used the Maser engine in the Citroen SM, with that gearbox, but not sure if the Citroen box was ever used in the Merak.

If you recall your Esprit history, Lotus thought they were going to have to machine a new CWP for the Esprit because in the SM, the gearbox was in the front of the car, in front of the engine. They only found out fairly late on that the Maser engine turned backwards compared to just about every other engine in the world. So when it was turned around and put in the rear of the Esprit, they still had 5 forward and 1 reverse gears, as the Esprit engine was conventional as regards rotation.

If the Merak was mid-engined with that backwards running engine in front of the box, they would have the same problem that Lotus were expecting.

Paul.

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They do need to be commended though for doing a piece on Richard Burns. As far as I know they are the only show to do a feature.

I sent them a mail complaining about the lack of an esprit in there. Even a lowly turbo like mine would have thrashed the a?*e off those 3 sheds.

Cheers

Alan Croft

2000 V8 GT

87 Turbo Esprit HC

2000 Elise Sport 160

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Are you sure about that? I know they used the Maser engine in the Citroen SM, with that gearbox, but not sure if the Citroen box was ever used in the Merak.

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>

Hi Paul

I was lucky enough to see a very nice example of a Merak at the NEC Birmingham Classic car show last month (see photo). I was able to speak to the Maserati Club guys who confirmed it is the same Citroen Box. My interest being do they have the same problems as us & who do they get to repair these, parts ect. I want to rebuild my old, orriginal box which has a knackered CW.

We even got to have a look underneath, as you would do at these shows with such exotic motors like these, and instanly reconised the gearbox casing. Definatley looked like a S1,S2 & early S3 casing.

Wayne, Thank you for your input & photo , I only could get a phot of the car it's self.

Daz

B)

The need for speed can be found with a Lotus

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ITS SAD TO SEE THESE LOVELY CARS COME TO AN END! HAVING RESTORED

A FEW OLD CLASSIC RUST BUCKETS FROM THE GROUND UP MYSELF ITS

SAD TO SEE THESE SMASHING CARS WRECKED, THE MERAK IS LOVELY

NOT SURE ABOUT THE LAMBO AND THE FERRARI GREW ON ME BY THE END

OF THE SHOW!

THE FACT IS THOUGH AS ALL OF US WILL KNOW FROM BUYING

PARTS FOR OUR OWN CARS THE COST INVOLVED! THESE CARS WOULD

TAKE THOUSANDS AND THOUSANDS RESTORE SO MOST OF THESE BABYS

RUST IN PEICE!

AS SAID ANOTHER FANTASTIC SHOW! :rolleyes::P:):(:)

A

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Can confim - Definitely the same box.

BTW, and Teigan will love this, the complete drive train, engine and box can be dropped out by removing 6 bolts and disconnecting a few wires etc... Easy to assemble and easier to remove. Got a nice cut away drawing lying around somewhere. While try and dig it out.

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Can confim - Definitely the same box.

BTW, and Teigan will love this, the complete drive train, engine and box can be dropped out by removing 6 bolts and disconnecting a few wires etc... Easy to assemble and easier to remove. Got a nice cut away drawing lying around somewhere. While try and dig it out.

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>

If only it could have been that easy when I poped my newer box in earlier this year.

Daz

The need for speed can be found with a Lotus

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I saw this tonight, and agree the Esprit would have been well in there  B)

all have a right laugh...

:rolleyes:

I agree with this and I gotta say that a

Possibly save your life. Check out this website.
http://everyman-campaign.org/

 

Distributor for 'Every Male' grooming products. (Discounts for any TLF members hairier than I am!)

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