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Evora 400 Test Drive... Thoughts


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Dont forget to adjust the M4 radio on the test drive to hear the engine sound just right...  :dizzy::dizzy:

(I used to be in the M world (before the engine radio days), and I've been a Lotus person, so for me it would be an easy choice not to go with an M4 over an Evora 400.  The M4 is fine, but wont bring a smile to your face or others like the Evora 400.  But then again, I suppose The Lotus Forums isn't the place where anyone is going to think an M4 is anything special.)

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Not my pictures, but as I now have a (tentative) collection date and everything seems solid, I'd like to introduce to you all the conclusion to my search. Some changes have been made to the car s

I come from Jap rally replica background (JDM scoob & evos). I change cars every 18 months, but have owned a '06 Impreza Spec C Type RA for 10 years, which is an absolute keeper for weekend thrash

Car is still on temporary reg, should be changing over next week

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Precisely. I quite like the looks of the M4, but my very limited experience thus far hasn't thrilled me. I have yet to drive a car which was genuinely free of turbo lag. Only my step-mother's 135i doesn't really feel boosted but the boost is quite mild on that. I know turbos have their supporters but for navigating tight little country lanes I need instant throttle response - an area the Evora certainly impressed. My supercharger driving experience is very very limited, but with the Lotus you'd never have guessed it was forced induction. Only a very, very faint supercharger whine on the 400 too. I wouldn't actually mind that being louder.

James Martin (JayEmm)
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Having had an E46 M3, at a time when that car was somewhat light and looked different from the ordinary 3 series, I think the looks of the current M4 are relatively boring.  And there's so many out there being driven by people who aren't even real drivers, you know somethings gone awry with BMW.  If the M4 goes by quick enough, you can barely differentiate it from the 4 series.  And with BMW putting M bits all over all their cars, there's even less differentiation.  On the other hand, when you sit in an Evora 400, you know you are in a special machine (even assuming you perceive a slightly high seat height).  And when you hear it go by, and see it go by, there really is no comparator in the price range.  But that's just my take on the situation.  It broke my heart when the Lotus North America guy told me the roadster won't be here for another two years.  I am not exaggerating - I felt like shit when he said that.  My daughter who was with me and was with me when I bought the Elise had to console me the whole way home.  But I remain hopeful.

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12 minutes ago, JayEmm said:

I need instant throttle response

Then keep it over 3k, no throttle lag at all then a the turbo is up to speed. 

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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Then you wind up in a catch 22 though - by 3,000rpm the damn thing has so much torque it's ridiculous.

As much as it may sound to the contrary, the Evora is still my number one choice, I am simply enjoying the watching and selecting process. 

And @BWEx you are completely correct. I think the Evora actually feels like a more special place to sit in than even the R8, which to me feels a bit old now and very "Audi". Extremely well screwed together, but uninspiring and very plastic. I prefer the M4 interior over the R8, although I probably prefer the E92 M3 interior over that.

James Martin (JayEmm)
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When I was a kid, my two dream cars were:  BMW M1, and Lotus Esprit.   When I had my E46 M3, it was thrilling to be part of the M story and the car was special.  The M designation meant something both about the car and the car owner.  Today, in my view, BMW has diluted the M badge to the point where it's slightly more than just a marketing tool.  I hope Lotus doesn't go there in the name of selling more cars, but for now, thankfully, they are still interested in being drivers' cars.

Incidentally, the M1, today, is selling at $600,000, which is remarkable.  The closest I came to fulfilling that dream was to sit in one and smile in the storehouse basement of my Lotus dealer's place (they also buy and sell very cool exotic classic cars).

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2 hours ago, C8RKH said:

Agree Colin. I want an original GT40 too! ;)  Just as a quick aside when I was in South Africa last year I was lucky enough to get a ride in one of the "official" continuation cars that are still made there - absolutely authentic and just stunningly beautiful and oh, what a noise.  You can get them shipped here fully ready to go, but you need to budget circa £115k for the exact spec you'll want. If I ever have the cash, even though it ain't one of Colin's, I'll be buying one just like this....

p2315.jpg

Was that Superformance?

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Re seat heights: I drove a 400 back to back with a N/A last week and the seat did seem a little higher in the 400 but as others have said this might have been a optical illusion caused by dash/sill heights. Great driving position regardless.

I also drove a new M3 recently - nice inside but extremely dull compared to any Evora. I had a V8 M3 a few years ago which I much preferred to the new version but even that one just seemed crushingly competant rather than exciting (except the noise which was glorious with a tweaked exhaust).

I said it on another thread, no car I've ever driven felt so immediately 'right' for me as the 400. I will have one at some point, just need to decide whether to spend a fortune on one now or get into an S and wait for 400's to depreciate a bit. My head hurts from thinking about it.

Edited by swanny71
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Could always buy this instead:

1983 LOTUS ESPRIT TURBO

--Silver with Red leather interior and Red carpeting, 32,000 original miles, 2,174cc DOHC 16-Valve Turbocharged 4-Cylinder Engine, 5-Speed Manual, Factory a/c

Esprit Turbo.jpg

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I feel your pain Rich, I only went to look at the cheapest "S" I could find... wound up having a go in a 400... now looking at making a very expensive decision! But one which would put a huge smile on my face no doubt

James Martin (JayEmm)
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Yes Nerobi it was. Great cars from what I could see. 

If I were a rich man,
Burble, gurgle, pop, fart, burbly, gurgly ye hay!.
All day long I'd burgle gurgle pop.
If I were a wealthy man.
I wouldn't have to drive hard.
Ya ha burble, gurgle, burble burble, gurgle pop!.
If I were a biddy biddy rich,
Idle-diddle-daidle-daidle man.

I'd buy a Lotus 400 and drive and sing all day long,
Right through the middle of the town.
In a fine red 400 with a tin roof and lowered seat below.
There would be one long road just going up,
And one even longer coming down,
And one more leading nowhere, just for the 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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4 minutes ago, BWex said:

Could always buy this instead:

1983 LOTUS ESPRIT TURBO

--Silver with Red leather interior and Red carpeting, 32,000 original miles, 2,174cc DOHC 16-Valve Turbocharged 4-Cylinder Engine, 5-Speed Manual, Factory a/c

Esprit Turbo.jpg

Would love to but two issues for me:

1. Wheels on the wrong side - it's just plain wrong to have in on the left

2. Wife would not let me have one as it's "too Angular Merkel" for her - hence the GT40 love as you could never call that "angular"

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 dream Lotus for a very long time was a Grand Prix white Turbo Esprit, black bumpers, red or black interior. Beautiful cars. I came extremely close to buying one but it was not to be.

At the time I was looking at £15k cars thinking I'd never be able to afford them!

Edited by JayEmm

James Martin (JayEmm)
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Follow my Lotus adventure online! www.jayemm.com

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29 minutes ago, C8RKH said:

Yes Nerobi it was. Great cars from what I could see. 

If I were a rich man,
Burble, gurgle, pop, fart, burbly, gurgly ye hay!.
All day long I'd burgle gurgle pop.
If I were a wealthy man.
I wouldn't have to drive hard.
Ya ha burble, gurgle, burble burble, gurgle pop!.
If I were a biddy biddy rich,
Idle-diddle-daidle-daidle man.

I'd buy a Lotus 400 and drive and sing all day long,
Right through the middle of the town.
In a fine red 400 with a tin roof and lowered seat below.
There would be one long road just going up,
And one even longer coming down,
And one more leading nowhere, just for the drive.

You're supposed to put V-Power in the Evora, not drink the stuff!

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Yeah, so many dream cars.  Wouldn't it be so great to be Jay Leno or Jerry Seinfeld and basically have every car you ever wanted?  I wonder if it's too late to go into show business.

If you haven't already seen it, you should check out http://comediansincarsgettingcoffee.com/  It's a great comedy series with some pretty cool cars.  I know here in the US we're (or at least most of the people I know) are big fans of British comedy, but I don't know if it works in reverse.

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One thing I did notice from my brief time in the USA, they are a nation of car lovers. I drove the Corvette for a week and so many random people started conversations with me because of the car, including people driving past on the freeway. I would have thought a Vette would be invisible over there, but it went down great. Not one negative comment, except from the guy I nearly ran over crossing the road (my fault).

It's a massive generalisation but I find more people tend to be negative when it comes to nice cars here

Edited by JayEmm

James Martin (JayEmm)
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Definitely true.  All kinds of different reasons too.  Driving nuts (like me).  Status symbol for some.  Idea that the car is a reflection of you pervades the culture here.  My friend who is single bought a corvette thinking it would attract women.  Now, when he drives around, all he gets are a million guys asking him about horsepower and torque.  More than once, I've had a guy zoom up to me, shouting out his window the name of the restaurant where he valet parks and asking me to go there (I can't even imagine having a valet parking my Elise).

By the way, on the idea of whether or not cars can be a tool to attract women, I found this video hysterical (and pretty accurate):  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UcvHSmF28qc

 

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Doug's video is pretty accurate!

I noticed in the USA it's fairly commonplace for cars to be modded. If you go on R8 forum etc... then you'll see lots of people who have modified their cars. Over here, I think any car like that which isn't stock is generally frowned upon.

James Martin (JayEmm)
Director of Photography & Car Enthusiast

Follow my Lotus adventure online! www.jayemm.com

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Yep.  Consistent with the idea that the car is a reflection of you, and mods are a way of personalizing that expression. 

There are purists, though.

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1 hour ago, swanny71 said:

You're supposed to put V-Power in the Evora, not drink the stuff!

I just use regular unleaded (never from the supermarket though) and it goes vroom vroom just fine....

1 hour ago, BWex said:

I know here in the US we're (or at least most of the people I know) are big fans of British comedy, but I don't know if it works in reverse.

Yeah, we're big fans of US comedy here, especially that new guy, what's he called again, oh, yeah, Trump!  Makes me laugh every time I see him on the TV.... ;)

 

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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Good one.  At the beginning he was funny.  Now, when it's real, he's more scary then funny.  :cry:  Much more pleasant to talk about cars. :driving:

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As much as I am often indifferent to the cars, I really like the fact that Japanese cars are often made with modding in mind - to the extent that you see the guys working for the companies talking about tuning, and they often have very strong relationships with tuning companies.

There are certain exceptions in the German car world (eg. RUF), but it's nowhere near as commonplace, which is a shame. Variety is very much the spice of life!

James Martin (JayEmm)
Director of Photography & Car Enthusiast

Follow my Lotus adventure online! www.jayemm.com

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4 minutes ago, BWex said:

Good one.  At the beginning he was funny.  Now, when it's real, he's more scary then funny.  :cry:  Much more pleasant to talk about cars. :driving:

Put him in a 400 and he'll have the most fun ever with his pants on and maybe, just maybe, he'll realise driving cars is way more fun than driving a country.

But don't worry, you guys may have Trump but we have many many many political muppets over here too! Some just as scary as Trump. Some madder. And some, well, words can't describe really but a pictures say so much more...

images (3).jpg

download (5).jpg

download (6).jpg

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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