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Loose Cannon

Lost Elite S2 appears

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For the past 15 years of my boring, tragic life I've been collecting images of Elites from the net. Some are easily recognised when they change hands, which admittedly is fairly easy on the S2s when they only made 120 odd.

 

Anyhow, there was one tantalising image of a very late registered blue S2 (with a Riviera bonnet) lurking in an underground garage in Liverpool. Some of you may have heard of this garage previously; it was an old terminal on the abandoned Dingle railway, but it was more famous recently for collapsing and trying to take the street above with it! There are loads of pics on the net of a variety of classic cars mouldering away under there, some of which may be entombed forever now. There was a gold Elite S1 with heavily blistered paint which I think managed to emerge and was sold, but I always wondered what happened to the S2. Well it seems to be alive and been spotted on Pistonheads somewhere in Oxford I think;

 

16681903404_b683c24481_b.jpg

 

16684108073_ac16ac0329_b.jpg

 

The bulk of S2s were V reg when it was a standard production model, however in 81/82 they were made to order only at about 1 a month and mostly W and X registered. There is that copper coloured A plater which is well known as Kimbo's old company car, but I have only ever seen one other Y reg ( a red one from Ireland which may have been spirited away to Sweden by now)

 

So has anyone seen this or admit to buying it? I'd love to know if it was the previously subterranean example and if so how it how it got back to the daylight!

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Great find Mark - lets hope this gets a response from the new owner

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I recently came across another Elite S2.2 owner, in Bromsgrove not far from me. I still have to talk to him properly but he has done a great job restoring his car, which coincidentally is X reg and an automatic like mine. Oddly, only 13 were made that year (according to Graham Robson) yet 22 survive in the UK (2 licensed and 20 SORN) according to howmanyleft.co.uk - whether you select year of registration or manufacture.

 

Maybe we could have a mini register of Elite S2.2s? I'd be happy to organise unless Dunc already has this available?

 

ATB Richard

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Some people are quite private about their personal info and ownership, especially the typically older 4-seater owners who don't live their lives on display like the modern generation! I've come across 3 more S2.2s, one derelict two much less so, but their owners weren't interested in talking further or even getting in touch with Dunc to register

 

I agree the register could do with being more open, it might encourage others to "own up". There are other resources like Lambo registers etc, which have a pic of a surviving car with a few details/chassis numbers etc, without giving away anything to identify the owner.

 

How about it Dunc?

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The cars on the register can be sorted by type (filters in excel), so it can show whichever version you wish to look at.

I really do need to put some proper effort into updating the info sent to me onto the excel log, but time has been at a premium recently with a new job. I'll get round to it shortly.

As a % of cars made, S2's are over represented on the register, which I think probably equates to a much higher survival rate for S2 cars.

The ones that are disappearing are the series 1's, despite far more being made.

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Sadly having checked my "archive" the blue car above appears not to be the underground example below whose fate sadly now seems less certain :cry: ;

 

17253876123_be56b30300_z.jpg

 

Who know maybe an archaeologist will dig it up in a thousand years?

 

I'm pretty certain the title car is this one pictured below which I spotted on Ebay 10 or so years ago for £1350, notable for it's Riviera bonnet, and being pictured in some apocalyptic kind of scrapyard.

 

17687785508_cc93c66d7b.jpg

 

 

And a pic of the only other Y reg I've seen, now in Sweden I think (why do other countries appreciate these cars more than us?)

 

17872268482_d637101212.jpg

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4 or even 6 of the Elite Rivieras are Y-regs.

 

 

I have also offered help for building a Riviera Register with some informations I have collected over the years.

Edited by Don.Hasi

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Of course you are right, I tend to think of the Elite as a model of its own and was just thinking of the "normal" saloon with this thread. I have 5 confirmed Y reg Rivieras, and one unknown registraion date for chassis 1727A (the 2 chassis ahead and one behind being X reg, but the one 2 behind being Y strangely, I suppose it depends how long it sat around unsold)

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Interesting... what do you mean exactly with 1727A? The last 5 digits of the VIN? I have only noticed some in the 40s and 50s... And the "A" is in the VIN too? Or do you mean, that 1727 was an A-reg?

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Hello Loose Cannon and co

Thought I'd let you know that I'm finally sorting out my Elite S2, and I hope to get it on the road by autumn (and use it!). I bought it from eBay back in 2007ish - OPW 655W (gold outside, very brown inside) I'll no doubt be picking some brains on here in the coming months! I plan to keep as much original, but I'm toying with some upgrades to make it a viable 'weekly driver'. I've already read some helpful threads on here about the key practicality & reliability upgrades, but I'm always keen to hear new ideas on that.

Also - my nearest lotus specialist is Morland Jones in Hammersmith, and I was wondering if anyone had used them for Elite/Éclat work?

Many thanks

Richard

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Cool, I really would love a riviera bonnet on mine if one comes up...

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Thought I'd let you know that I'm finally sorting out my Elite S2- OPW 655W

 

 

You mean this one?

 

5118123484_a458cd684b_b.jpg

 

https://www.flickr.com/photos/triggerscarstuff/5118123484/in/photolist-8NdDSx-8NgHNm-8NdDqK-8NdEgc-8NdFPM-8NdEyz

 

Congrats this was the Lotus press car of the time, you will find a few magazines with pictures of it, very few in colour sadly! I bought a copy of "MOTOR" magazine just for 2 or 3 little pics to scan!

 

 

BTW has it had an LPG conversion? I recall emailing someone on Flickr who had a gold S2 thus defiled

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Im not sure id fancy that on my bonnet... Visibility not with standing, the stress cracks in the bonnet would do my nut in!

Edited by mikeeech

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Yes, that's the one - I've got the Autocar review so at least I know how it's meant to look! This is its current state:

This was last year - held up pretty well after a few years in storage.

Don't know why that's upside down!

post-19193-0-32930800-1432417843.jpg

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And here is another shot of your car, my mistake it was s "What Car?" Magazine from 1981

 

12665482524_83b95ef541_b.jpg

 

 

It still looks fab, even upside down (someone clever will be along to correct that soon probably)

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I hadn't seen that one - thanks. women on the bonnet, and now muddy tyres. What else did they do to it?

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Hi Richard, great looking car, and I'm very jealous of the vintage promo shots! I'm in north London and will be getting my Elite S2 on the road over the next few months. I'd be very keen to trade time with you on our restorations - these cars are fairly straightforward to spanner but some jobs do require more than two hands! - so please let me know if you fancy teaming up. Cheers, Dan

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Hi Dan

Another S2 in London! It's not black is it? A few years ago I regularly saw a black one driving through Clerkenwell, as if someone was using it to go to work!

Mine's in Essex at my Dad's, having most of the work done there. I say 'having it done' because I have to admit I'm a cack-handed idiot when it comes to doing it myself. I can just about pass small things and lift big things, so let me know if you need another pair of hands for those bits!

Cheers

Richard

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