free hit
counters
'96 V8 - rather poorly and needs some help - Esprit 'Project & Restoration' Room - The Lotus Forums Jump to content
swindon_alan

'96 V8 - rather poorly and needs some help

Recommended Posts

(Duplicate post to introductions section of the forum)

 

Hi all, hope that you are doing well

 

I've recently bought a '96 Esprit V8 in Lotus metallic green, only 44k miles with full provenance, service history, receipts and so on.

 

I have wanted an Esprit since they were introduced in 1976 when I was in short trousers and now I have finally got one!

 

post-18669-0-85075500-1425993939.jpg

 

post-18669-0-75251000-1425993964.jpg

 

It is a fantastic car and completely gorgeous...except

 

I should have known not to take it out in the winter. Nine days in I was coming off a roundabout a few hundred yards from my house, driving carefully, hit a patch of ice, lost it completely. Went straight across the road, up a verge and demolished a two pole road sign. One of the poles was hit by the middle of the front end and went down flat, the other one grazed the driver's side. Luckily nobody was coming the other way or it could have been so much worse. No injuries, just a bit of shock. I drove the car back home pouring out coolant.

 

post-18669-0-25032600-1425993980.jpg

 

post-18669-0-59273600-1425994000.jpg

 

post-18669-0-58554900-1425994015.jpg

 

What sees like a long time later I have got a cash settlement from the insurers to repair it. It took a lot of effort to convince the company not to write it off, they employed an independent assessor in the end who described the car as "beautiful and must go back on the road".  A flexible insurance company? Well yes, in this case.

 

So I am now working with a classic car restoration specialist who has a lot of experience with fibreglass to get it sorted. I now understand how difficult spares for them are to get, particularly body panels. Lotus have destroyed the moulds apparently, surely it would have in someone's interest to take them off their hands and make some occasional money on replacements?

 

My mission is therefore to scour the Internet, the forums and the Lotus specialists to see what I can get hold of.

 

In the meantime, if anyone has any of the following knocking around surplus to requirements or can point me in the right direction I would be very grateful:

 

S4 front bumper

S4 V8 front spoiler

S4 RHS driver's door

S4 RHS sill cover

S4 rear bumper

 

If these are indeed like hen's teeth then the other option is to pay the labour to repair the damaged panels but that is going to be pretty expensive.

 

The windscreen took a whack at the bottom edges from the bonnet and is cracked, so will need a new one. Any suggestions on suppliers or pricing?

 

I need a coolant radiator as well, I see that Radtec do an aluminum one, does anybody have any experience of them? http://radtec.co.uk/products/536/Lotus-V8-Esprit.htm. Oh and anyone know what the fans were off? Fiesta Mk 2?

 

Target back on the road date: 30th April, parts permitting. Wish me luck!

 

Cheers

 

Alan

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Upgrade today to remove Google ads and support TLF.

Lotus didn't destroy the molds, we're the owners (custodians) of them and they're stored with a member in Belgium. :)

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Before you get too excited, they're the VARI moulds so are for making whole bodyshells.... but if you want to use them, I'll send you the contact details...

 

Fibre_Glass_In_Mold.jpg

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Radtec are about 300yards down the road from the guy who looks after my V8. Pretty sure he used them to replace the rad in my car a few years ago. If so I have had no problems - they fabricated it to match the old one.

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Thanks Dave, I will go with one of theirs then I think, unless somebody else can recommend an alternative. There is a black powder coat option which seems a bit counter intuitive, coating aluminium with paint seems a bit daft in terms of heat transfer/insulation? I guess it will stop corrosion though.

 

On another note, has anybody put the Lotus designed spring/shock combination on their V8? http://www.lotusespritworld.com/EGuides/EModifications/Lotus_Suspension.html I'm not rushing to do this, but am interested. I assume that it is still available from Lotus through a dealer.

Edited by ramjet

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Thanks Bibs.

 

The previous owner recently replaced my oil coolers, so I will go with the Radtec.

 

Hmmm. I wonder if I can squeeze the LOTAC setup into my insurance payment budget? :coffee:

 

Oh and I have paid for full forum membership. It's good on here  :gathering:

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Ouch its making me queezie looking at the photos im getting some new tyres before i go anywhere in winter again

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Wow that door popped back into shape rather well considering the beam deflection! Shame about the rads  they look new.

 

Just for reference can you tell me what parts were NOT available from Lotus new any more?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Hello Mark

 

None of the parts that I have found were sourced from Lotus.

 

They are a mix of a very fortunate encounter with a Lotus employee who bought and scrapped one of their development cars (what timing!), S J Sportscars, Radtec Radiators, PNM Engineering, third party suppliers of the part bin mix of components and lucky eBay finds.

 

What this experience does tell me is that I dare not crash the car ever again - fingers crossed - as it is going to get harder and harder to find spares.

 

Scary really...

 

Cheers

 

Alan

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

So were NONE of the parts available new AT ALL? This is scary as up until fairly recently the parts situation was very good, I suppose loads of factory sales should be an indicator of decreasing interest

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

All the repair parts were sold off a couple of years ago. They didn't sell many as a rule.

 

I think either SWLC or LotusBits took a job lot. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Oh well. let's not crash then. :)

 

Hope you get it all sorted out Alan. Horrible way to start off. My condolences.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Thought hi risk parts like a front bumper or spoiler would still be on the menu though!

 

SJ Sportscars have some stock of original front and rear bumpers etc. but they are pretty pricey. They also have repros at  reasonable cost (going for repro front bumper and front spoiler, I'm sure they are close enough).

Oh well. let's not crash then. :)

 

Hope you get it all sorted out Alan. Horrible way to start off. My condolences.

 

Thanks Ramjet, it's well on the mend and should be back on the road by Mayday for lots of Lotus events

:ball:

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

SJ Sportscars have some stock of original front and rear bumpers etc. but they are pretty pricey.

 

 

:help: 653.05 + VAT, should we laugh or cry?

 

Some things are just crazy.....2 grand for a pair of AP Racing discs....at this rate it will be worth breaking some of the ropier Esprits soon.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

That's an improvement - send her some grapes from me

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Popped in again today. Groan, the secondhand sill cover is slightly different from a V8, the pipework at the back is much longer and the front end is slightly curved. As it's off a factory development car I'm guessing that it might be a GT3 type? Oh well, will put that up for sale. So the man is repairing the old one, which makes me happier in a way as it's a bit more originality.

 

I took this pic as I still can't get over how wide the Esprit is and how mean it looks, being naked from behind he is incredibly horny.

 

I shouldn't have said that, should I?

 

:ermm:

 

post-18669-0-36462500-1428013924.jpg

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Not out loud. No. :D

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Whatever ticks your boxes - if you'd have stuck this up I'd have been more concernedpost-18482-0-32759100-1428041093.jpg

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now


×