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While sitting here pondering the problems I am having in buying a car that will run more than 20 miles without breaking I was wondering has anyone got an Esprit that they have never had to raise a spanner to other than routine service?

My last Esprit was an X180 and it almost fits into that catagory but I had to put a new alternator on it so a fall at the last post on that one.

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Not 100% but not far off - all the work I have done on my car has pretty much been my own stuff.

Dampers - OK but dampers go on all cars regardless, it's not as if they broke down or stopped me using the car, plus it was the way the car had been stored.

Starter Motor - 3rd party part that failed, the one off my 20 year old SE is still working fine in the GT3

Radiator - Lack of corect servicing, clogged, wasn't cleaned and the heat build up got to it - even then it was drivable as the leak was so slow.

Brian and I were talkng about this the other day how reliable they can be - despite probs mines never let me down, never had a hickup or anything and yet it gets treated so badly, left in the garage from weekend to weekend and then thrashed...having siad that I do look after it, and hopefully it's paying me back.

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In 5 years of ownership I have only had 3 issues affecting reliability. Clutch slave cylinder, poor connection to starter solenoid, and new rad due to old one corroding. All other work I have done is either routine maintainance, preventative maintainance, or upgrades. Lession here to all new and potential owners, dont skrimp on the maintanance, it will pay dividends in reliability.

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In exactly 12 months of ownership I've had two routine services (the latest one being the full cambelt service) and two new tires. Thats it. Nothing has broken or fell off but I have done some preventative stuff like replacing the wastgate capsules and some pipework as I had huge problems with these on my previous Esprit. Oh, and I've replaced the rattling heat shields. I did have an intermittant wandering idle but a new IAC valve fixed that at the last service. Its never let me down and has run almost perfectly since I bought it. Touch wood.

Compared to my previous V8-GT (over

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Steve, why limit yourself to the Megane??

It seems that just about any Renault and especially the 16V petrol models are diabolical in this respect.

Both secretaries in the office here have Renaults with 16V engines and I have spent many afternoons fault finding them because the garages are just about as hopeless as their engines.

The only car we have had that was truely bad was a BMW318i. Even the Landrover is more reliable.

As for the Esprit, after I had completed all the little fixits that needing doing following purchase I have since spent about 15 euro on 'non service items' in the last 2 years and about 800 euro in services. So I'm more than happy. :)

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I think the mods are going to have to delete this thread as it goes against the popular misconception of a Lotus being a collector's car, i.e. one where you have to go back and collect the bits that have dropped off.

It is nice to read about how reliable they can be. Mine often had little niggles but never let me down or needed emergency roadside repairs which I thought was not bad at all for a 25+ year old car which wasn't pampered by any means.

S4 Elan, Elan +2S, Federal-spec, World Championship Edition S2 Esprit #42, S1 Elise, Excel SE


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To be honest the idea of reading how relaible they are was part of my cunning plan.

The purchaseof my new baby is not going smoothly and reading hundreds of notes from people saying how relaiable their cars are is all part of my pre esprit therapy program and confidence boosting sessions.

When you have a dip into the forums you are generally reading about problems on cars (not always but you know what I mean) so its nice to get some positive vibes going (in a non hippy kind of way)

Twitter @radioRedwards

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Like all cars they have their issues, the problem is they are expensive to fix if you let them get ahold of the car.

I remember reading about the evora and how it has done 1,000 upon 1,000s of miles from here to timbuktoo - thats great but what really causes issues for cars is what 90% of us do to them which is take them out once a week for a good thrash at the weekend.

Tips for long life :

1 - Get someone to work on the car that KNOWS esprits, some Lotus dealers say they know it but they don't - some specialists know better than main dealers, so ask around (torquay you have SW Lotus and SJ sportscars to look after the car, possibly Peninsular Lotus too). They do have a lot of easy but quirky bits that need attention.

2 - Always warm up / down the fluids, have some mechanical sympathy.

3 - Dont scrimp the fluid changes - they degrade with time, most of my oil gets changed every 2-4,000 miles. I was naughty with mine this year and left it 14 months

4 - If it's a turbo, leave the boost alone - refrain from chipping and stuff like that (controversial I know)

5 - Get a workshop manual and get to know your car - I personally service my cars now and do all the checks myself, the only job I wont tackle is a cambelt - no one will look after your car or spot faults on it more than you will. They are easy to look after and the forum helps loads.

6 - regular use is imperitive

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