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Lotus classic cars need to triple in value...

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I think any decent Esprit is value for money.

I would imagine that they have been out of production long enough now that most if not all of them have bottomed out and their value must be on the increase.


It does depend on why you own one though.

If you buy one to have for a couple of years, keep it serviced and in good condition and then move it on I think it will have paid for itself. On the other hand, if you buy one to keep, its value is immaterial.

I have been asked god knows how many times "whats your car worth?"

In my view the car isn't really worth anything because I am not going to sell it after 31 years so it wont go back on the market again and it wont generate any cash.


I would think that the best cars with the perceived higher price tag will end up in this scenario, being retained by their owners so the less desirable available cars will be at a lower price keeping the average market price down.

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I agree with you about the valuations.  I follow the big auctions in USA, and I was a former collector.  I've owned a 1991 Lotus Esprit Jim Clark edition since new.  


Problem in the USA, and probably same for Europe, as I see it:


   1.  The big money guys, who are "lifting" the Ferrari, Aston Martin, Mercedes, and etc. market, do not know the Lotus.  Not at all.  And their purchases are about ego and bragging rights, not driving the cars.  Consequently, at this time, there are no "big credentials" for having any generation Lotus in their garage.  Peer status is not boosted.


2.  The recent ramp-up in values for extremely mediocre cars is insane, spurred I believe, by "2nd tier" money guys who missed the earlier action and, therefore, are now priced out of the rare Ferrari, A-M, and Mercedes market.  These people, following badge/insignia only, are driving up values of 2nd tier cars.  How else can you explain the rocketing values of a MB 190SL, or a Ferrari Dino, which now fetches $200K in #3 condition?  A Dino is a rebadged Fiat, from any way you want to look at it.  Four years ago, one could not give them away.


3.  Many of the writers about USA auctions are owners of classic Ferrari, MB, and Porsche.  So it is gratifying, and self-serving, to keep the marketplace pumped up by their auction reviews.  And there are writers with Fiat, Morgan, Triumph, Volvo collections/history, for example, but I have yet to read any auction coverage by any Lotus collector.  So, there is little public voice for the marquee.   Unfortunately.   


4.  So, as I see it, the big issue about Lotus:  lack of wide-spread brand identity and respect.  If the collector can't "buy" the envy of other collectors by having a Lotus in his garage, then the auction appeal is not there.


I wish it were not so.  The biggest problem in collecting a Lotus is not mechanical, in my opinion, but the narrow market when attempting to sell it.  Selling to another aficionado can be very straightforward; selling to an "outsider", though, can be brutal.


Nonetheless, I love my 1991 Esprit.  One day, It will go to one of my sons, who probably won't drive it because their is no dual-cluch transmission or self-parking.   Who, under 25 years of age these days, wants to change gears or learn now to parallel park?  Just joking to all you under-25 gear heads.


Just my "two cents".  Thanks.

good commentary..

If you set no goals you shall surely reach them..

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Great topic Gents. This is so timely for me because I have debated selling my '01 Esprit V8 and getting into a early to mid '90s 911. Big reasons: tired of the Esprit's clunky gearbox and the flat to no apperception of these Esprits in the foreseeable future.

I suggest you hang on to it. I paid £20k for my 2001 V8-GT back in '08. I was looking to raise some cash earlier this year for my business and the finance company I've used before valued it at £25k. Not a big increase I know but with dealers advertising them at £27K and more I think they are still on the up.

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  • 4 weeks later...

Looks like the classic car world has gone into some kind of mania.  This old 911 Targa has recently sold for £195,000.  A few years ago you couldn't give them away.  A while back one of my mates had a 1972 911s converted to RSR spec and he couldn't get more than £7,000 for it and was on the market for months.  I've just seen a similar one going for 90k.

At some point in the future people are going to wake up, the bubble will bust and it's going to be messy (like the early 90s).



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  • 3 weeks later...

The price of that 2004 kinda reflects the costs involved in importing it from the USA so it's very very expensive... one of few in Europe.. 

Vanya Stanisavljevic '91 Esprit SE | '97 XK8

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If you have the choice between a Stairway to Heaven and a Highway to Hell don't forget the Nomex®!

Captain,  Lotus Airways. We fly lower! 

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