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trw999

Famous Elan Owners

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There have been quite a number of famous owners of Elans. Everyone seems to think Jimi Hendricks owned an Elan, because of the well known photo of him sitting on the bonnet of a yellow and black S2. However, it was not his but owned by Noel Redding, one of his band members when he was touring and recording in London.

Other well known owners include Peter Sellers and Britt Eckland, the Team Lotus F1 drivers and one or two others as below. I currently have a list of 57 individual famous owners who have owned Elans.

1) Tara Browne, the (male) Guinness family scion who wrapped his car around a London lamppost and became subject of a Beatles song - "He blew his mind out in a car ..." This is his S2 in a garage car park in London - clearly before his accident.

2) Simon Oates in the TV series "Doomwatch'. Not a brilliant shot of the +2

3) Comedian Dick Emery had a number of Elans, all bought from Bell & Colvill, including a Series 4, a Plus 2S and a Sprint

 

5a219f7d661eb_TaraBrowneS2.thumb.jpg.525aaef452e91fc0a100570e2e32aa2c.jpg

5a219fa17a266_SimonOatesinTVSeriesDoomwatchVPM300H.jpg.1dd9eff34b47e938e74172131d01ca7b.jpg5a219fda4bc8b_DickEmerySprint.jpg.46540c09626efcc318863581cf611b3b.jpg

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Hi Tim .Might be wrong .Cilla Black elan plus 2. ...Ron Hickmam.....Great car .Mike

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Toshihiko Hirai, who while not the originator, Bob Hall is the one, was the engineer responsible for developing the MX5. He owned an Elan and used that as the model and formula for what he wanted the MX5 to become.

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Gordon Murray.jpg

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Thanks for some added suggestions! I certainly had not heard about Cilla Black - any source for that one?

Bibs, I too have spent a couple of hours viewing Deryck's collection. I even tracked down Jochen's S4 for him.

Here is the list of allegedly 'famous' owners, some clearly more so than others:

Adrian Newey

Andrew Loog Oldham

Brit Ekland

Cass Eliott

Chris Barber

Chris Evans

Chris Rea

Colin Chapman

Dan Gurney

Diana Rigg

Dick Emery

Emerson Fittapaldi

George Best

Gordon Murray

Graham Hill

Hazel Chapman

Herbert Jones (Lt Col H Jones VC)

Jabby Crombac

Jacky Ickx

Jay Leno

Jim Clark

Jim Crawford

Jim Trueman

Jochen Rindt

John Geils

Keith Duckworth

Lady Sarah Curzon

Liz Frazer

Nick Mason

Nigel Roebuck

Noel Redding

Paul Newman

Peter Brandon

Peter Egan

Peter Sellers

Peter Warr

Peter Windsor

Prince William of Gloucester

Ronnie Petersen

Rupert Mainwaring

Stirling Moss

Susan George

Tara Browne

The Crown Prince of Brunei

The Jordanian Ambassador

The Yardbirds

Tony Loweth

Tony Rudd

Viscount Gormeston

 

Let me know any more.

Tim

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Hi Tim .i think I read some where in a club lotus mag ref Cilla Black ....Mike

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Thanks Mike.

Another snap! Jacky Ickx gets his Plus 2S 130/5 in January 1974.

 

Tim

Jacky Ickx Jan 74 Lotus World.jpg

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I had forgotten to include the formidable Betty Haig (1906-87) grand niece of Field-Marshal the Earl Haig. She is the only person to have ever won an Olympic Gold Medal for motoring, at the 1936 Berlin Games. She also competed in other rallies and many circuits. She had an early Elan 1600, kept for a couple of years and described by her as: "a surprisingly good little car, its only fault the lack of a fifth gear," by which she implies that it is under-geared, running out of revs at 110/112 m.p.h. while still accelerating. "The handling is out of this world, spoiling you for anything else." And a ride "better than that of any other car in the present stable, except her Austin 1100." Betty Haig rates the Elan as the fastest car there is from A to B on English roads. She subsequently bought a new S4 FHC in component form in 1970.

In addition to the Elans, Betty ran a Type 23 in competition in 1963-65 and owned an Elite before that.

Tim

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Yes, not sure why I don't have Ron down on that list, as I do have his Sprint and the Metier on my 'master' list.

Thanks, Tim

Tim

 

Classic Cars Mar 1998 2a.jpg

Edited by trw999
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Hi again .Tim .Might be wrong but I think Brian Rixx  Read again in a club lotus mag ...Mike

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On 15 December 2017 at 16:27, trw999 said:

Thanks Mike.

Another snap! Jacky Ickx gets his Plus 2S 130/5 in January 1974.

 

Tim

Jacky Ickx Jan 74 Lotus World.jpg

I don't know whether he or Lotus owned the car.  Likewise for the other GP drivers although I know Mario Andretti had his art his home in Pennsylvania.

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I know Hill, Clark, Rindt, Peterson all had their names on the reg doc of their cars, so an assumption would be that they and other drivers did indeed own the cars Lotus gave them.

Tim

Edited by trw999

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I have been browsing my back copies of Club Lotus News and did indeed find reference to Cilla Black and Brian Rix owning Plus 2 Elans, from the pen of Graham Arnold:

"Cilla Black bought two, so as to always have one but her husband Bill [sic] wanted to sue us when it broke down on the M4 going to London Airport - she missed her flight, ruined her hair do etc."

"We sold one to Brian Rix and it caught fire so we gave him another one and that reduced itself to cinders on Salisbury Plain."

Although not entirely clear, it appears from Arnold's article that these were actual early +2 cars, with the wiring having been done by the colour blind factory worker and the Smiths instruments being a batch previously rejected by Jaguar. And Cilla's husband was of course, Bobby.

Tim

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Hi Tim .Thats good .Me a mind of useless information .....Mike

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To my mind, Malcolm Ricketts is famous! And on my log book. (0135G)

There's also discussion my other car 26/5538 was in Mr Petersen's hands......who knows.

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I've seen this reference before to 5538 having been loaned to Peterson. However, it is a 1966 Elan and RP had only just moved from karts into F3 at that time and not, so far as I can see, with Lotus. He only joined Lotus in 1972 and was then given a Plus 2S 130 by Chapman.

If 5538 was a factory car then I would have expected it to have been so for only a couple of years at the most. Sure, it has a Luton registration, as many Cheshunt cars did. Do you have any original documents for the car, by any chance? And have you asked Andy Graham at Hethel for any help tracking this down? Be interesting to know.

Tim

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Beautiful looking car. :thumbup: 

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