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Why does Lotus suffer from reliability jibes


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So, I get it. It's made of plastic and is a glorified kit car that always breaks down. We've all heard it before I'm sure, usually from smug Porkpie and Audi drivers. Well enough is enough.

Fancy a GT3 rather than an Evora 400 / GTE the read this:

http://blog.caranddriver.com/some-porsche-911-gt3s-are-getting-new-engines-again/

According to JDPower /Which Audi reliability fallen off a cliff and RS6 one of THE most troublesome cars.

I'm biased I have an Evora, but as owners, supporters and advocates of the brand how do we help to turn this perception around? After all, a strong Lotus with a strong brand is good news for all of us isn't it?

From what I have consistently read on here Lotus and her dealers generally stand by the customers, often going well beyond what other "superior" brands like those well known German ones would do.

I'll have a wee dram tonight to Lotus for designing and nuilding a supercar I can afford to drive and drive.

Alcohol. Sex. Tobacco. Drugs. Chocolate.  Meh! NOTHING in this world is as addictive as an Evora +0. It's not for babies!    

The first guy to ride a bull for fun, was a true hero. The second man to follow him was truly nuts!   

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Can't think what you mean re this statement DaveC72:   "With no offence intended, the "romance" of other nation's manufacturing hubs would always be somehow more alluring than Longbridge or Norfolk.

I guess when young people start learning about cars, they learn that Lotus's are unreliable, without any previous experience of their own.  Just like they learn that Porsche's are reliable and Alfa Ro

Yes, apologies for that picture, I am new to the Lotus forum and didn't think about the negativity it may create. I just thought being Lotus owners, people would like to know what happened. Lotus were

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If the V6 Exige and Evora prove to be reliable in the long-term, maybe that will change people's perception of the brand...

 

Never mind the GT3 engine debacle of last year, just say "IMS" to any Porsche owner who mentions Lotus reliability. (Speaking as a past owner of three different Porsche models.)  :harhar:

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It always makes me laugh when people talk about Lotus being 'plastic' cars. What are most cars made out of, at least in part, these days ?

 

My wife's Kuga has plastic bumpers (obviously), plastic wings, plastic tailgate. So the only metal is the bonnet, roof (mostly glass) and doors.

 

If they called it composite everybody would get excited (yes I know fibreglass is a composite)

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It drives me up the wall, I've had it for 13 years with my Esprit and it seems to be getting worst.  People come up to me and say what a lovely looking car it is and then say shame they're so unreliable.  Even the builder working on our extension said they have a terrible reputation.  It's seems to have been set in folk law :(.

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Perhaps relevant 30+ years ago. Long time back now...

88 Esprit NA, 89 Esprit Turbo SE, Evora, Evora S, Evora IPS, Evora S IPS, Evora S IPS SR, Evora 400, Elise S1, Elise S1 111s, Evora GT410 Sport

Evora NA

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I know. But even with the launch the new Giulia there are article that say you will love the styling and handling but bits will fall off and it will be back at the dealers and lot. Not even in peoples hands yet. All goes to perpetuating the misconceptions.

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Never bothered about other people's opinions. The vast majority know four fifths of five eighths of hardly anything anyway.

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

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Lotus need to go back to Le Mans. Much of Porsche's reputation for durability comes from their dedication to endurance racing.

 

Mind you, the TVR T400Rs were remarkably successful at endurance racing, but it didn't do much to shift their reputation.

 

The association with Toyota is a good one for Lotus's reputation, I think they could do more with it though, encourage someone to drive an Evora around the world and document it all on Youtube. I'm available by the way!

 

:welcome:

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From what I have consistently read on here Lotus and her dealers generally stand by the customers, often going well beyond what other "superior" brands like those well known German ones would do.

I think this depends entirely on which dealer you go to!! This year I decided to use a different Lotus dealership as I was so fed up with the poor service where I used to take my cars. I wish I'd stuck with the devil I knew!!! My experience with this new dealership has been shocking!

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This is one reason.

 

http://www.thelotusforums.com/forums/topic/75716-help-coolant-spilling-out-after-re-fill-need-some-advice/

 

Looks like guy who know how to charge for work they dont know how to do! It seems amazing as older Lotus are not that different from other cars.

 

Also I think a lot of stuff is jealousy. People use it as a put down.

 

Buddsy

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"Belief is the enemy of knowing" - Crrow777

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I think there's a lot of truth in that Buddsy - Some people like to make themselves feel better by putting you down when you have an interesting car like a Lotus.

It makes them feel better about driving something safe and dull.

I've never understood that mind set; I still give owners of other nice cars a thumbs up as I appreciate the car, regardless of whether I'm in my Lotus or not .

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Even my mates had a chuckle when I said I was thinking about a lotus but as one of them has just rejected his brand new 42k audi Q5 after its bean back to the dealer for the fith time on a flatbed, and he used to work for the RAC and is a good spanner man so he's had a bit of stick bless him  

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Ex-pat Brits would be the worst over here that I have found. I ask people how many have they owned and what are they making the assumption based on.

My S4 has been brilliant.

All we know is that when they stop making this, we will be properly, properly sad.Jeremy Clarkson on the Esprit.

Opinions are like armpits. Everyone has them, some just stink more than others.

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Nearly every one of the people who says that Lotus are unreliable have ever owned on. That's the first question I ask when they reel out that tired old line and they go quiet after that.

 

It's not different to Fix It Again Trevor and Fixed or Repaired Daily and so on... 

88 Esprit NA, 89 Esprit Turbo SE, Evora, Evora S, Evora IPS, Evora S IPS, Evora S IPS SR, Evora 400, Elise S1, Elise S1 111s, Evora GT410 Sport

Evora NA

For forum issues, please contact the Moderators. I will aim to respond to emails/PM's Mon-Fri 9-6 GMT. 

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Like those Bibs, my personal favourite but on  slight twist is "Another Useless Driver Inside" or to be less polite "Arseholes Usually Drive It". But then I do seem to encounter the worst of Audi drivers around here where I live.

 

I guess it will take time and as stated earlier, I think part of the problem is just a complete lack of understanding / jealously re the cars as they are different and not mainstream but unlike a Bugatti / Koenigsegg / Pagani / etc etc  in that they don't cost a million so are not seen as "aspirational". It doesn't help with the flippant, ill informed comments from the Journo's, though to be honest, that usually says more about their (lack of) professionalism and biased nature to the mainstream which I guess is what sells the magazines etc.

 

If Lotus keep doing what they've been doing then I guess it will all come around.

Alcohol. Sex. Tobacco. Drugs. Chocolate.  Meh! NOTHING in this world is as addictive as an Evora +0. It's not for babies!    

The first guy to ride a bull for fun, was a true hero. The second man to follow him was truly nuts!   

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My car was built in 1991 and I have owned it for more than 21 years. It has let me down once in that time when the SU fuel pump (as used in lots of other contemporaries like Jaguars) failed. The galvanised chassis is still good and the (Lotus) engine is fine.

 

Talking of recalls, the wonderful, all powerful Ferrari 458 had to be recalled because they caught fire!

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One guy saw mine at the races in Pinjarra when I was picking up my daughter.

He said, "Is that real or a plastic fantastic?"

I said, "Yes it's plastic and it's a real one."

He walked away puzzled by my answer.

Ignorance more than anything, I think.

All we know is that when they stop making this, we will be properly, properly sad.Jeremy Clarkson on the Esprit.

Opinions are like armpits. Everyone has them, some just stink more than others.

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IMHO Lotus are lightyears ahead in build quality and reliability since they've started producing the Elise S1 (or the Esprit if that matters)

 

I get kind of annoyed by the comments of some people (owners!) who bluntly write they're all falling apart, they're a piece of sh*t and they will break down etc.

Even people who own cars which are far more then ten years old seem to be going mental when somethign breaks (after doing a zillion trackdays, forgetting about increased maintenance to be able to do trackdays etc)

 

As long as Lotus remains a small company they cannot be in the same league as Pork or Audi. Simply because the numbers don't justify same production methods being used. (for instance, Lotus are still using some vacuum formed parts where VAG are using injection moulded parts). Most of that has changed meanwhile, so they have improved, but yes some parts are still being made in a lower volume production process. That doesn't mean it's bad?

 

Same with parts supply.. people are constantly shouting at Lotus because they don't stock a part of a 15 year old car. Really? Try Ferrari or even Pork, you will run into the same issues as nobody is able to stock every single part and even more important, no manufacturer has full control over it's suppliers. If they go bust, that's the end of it for a lot of old cars.

 

...and there's the issues with suppliers who deliver bad quality... who would think Recaro would come up with seats which are such bad quality? The leather (or at least dying process) isn't right, the plastic at the back is chosen incorrectly (scuffs like no tomorrow) so yeah.. the seats in an Evora are not great. But didn't I hear the same abour Pork using these seats? and can you blame Lotus on the long term? When all warranties are expired, what are they supposed to do? Send everyone new seats free of charge?

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I had a Jaguar XJ, 2006, all aluminium bodied beauty with every extra going. Never missed a single beat in 5 years of ownership and 100,000k miles. I would say you were just unlucky :)

 

It's interesting, but I find Porkpie, Audi, BMW owners seem to be the ones who have the most negative things to say about the Lotus.  I guess that like most sheep they just follow the herd and can't understand why someone would want something different.

 

I've got many "friends" with Audi's and to be honest, the Audi's are always going wrong and they are quite smug. Several friends with Skoda's and they do nothing but rave about them and have few problems. Funny given that they are basically the same cars from a component perspective. 

Alcohol. Sex. Tobacco. Drugs. Chocolate.  Meh! NOTHING in this world is as addictive as an Evora +0. It's not for babies!    

The first guy to ride a bull for fun, was a true hero. The second man to follow him was truly nuts!   

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Returning to this forum after many years, I would like to add some perspective to this topic.

First, in 1991, I bought a 1984 Turbo Esprit which I still have today. In addition to monthly drives of 50+ miles, I've taken many 300+ mile trips in it at least once a year and even a 2000 mile trip. Overall, in these last 24 years of my ownership, there hasn't been much anguish.

Bad or poor maintenance by previous owners or unknowledgeable or uncaring mechanics have been the bane of many foreign cars. Also, in the 1950's through maybe the 1970's, many if not most Americans didn't realize European cars (especially British or Italian) weren't designed to run for 12 months with just oil changes for maintenance.

A few years ago Hemmings wrote a story about a 900 mile trip in an Esprit and brought up all the tired clichés. I wrote to the author to complain, saying he did a disservice by perpetuating stories of issues that no longer exist. He replied back, essentially saying "well, that's the reputation they had, so I can repeat it."

However, I do flinch a bit about the fit of the early Esprits (I can't speak for other Lotuses). A 1981 DeLorean has far better fit and finish than a pre-GM Esprit (an Elise owner in my club has a DeLorean, so I'm very familiar with them). So it is with other cars of the era such as the 911 and Ferrari 308. They looked more substantial and felt more substantial, even if an Esprit can beat them on the track. That feeling is what survives today.

Lastly, I've owned an Audi S4 (2001) and now own a Cayman S. They are very good and extremely reliable cars. It does Lotus owners no good to hurl childish epithets at other marques.

Edited by mr50bmg

All Cows Eat Grass

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Welcome back :welcome:

All we know is that when they stop making this, we will be properly, properly sad.Jeremy Clarkson on the Esprit.

Opinions are like armpits. Everyone has them, some just stink more than others.

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