free hit
counters
Wanted - Esprit... But values all over the place! Looking for advice :) - Esprit Chat - The Lotus Forums Jump to content
Llewelyn82

Wanted - Esprit... But values all over the place! Looking for advice :)

Recommended Posts

Hi all

I'm a Porsche guy, having owned various Porsches over the last 10 years (aircooled 911 3,2, 928's, 944's, Boxster S 987/986 etc). I've always fancied an Esprit but have been scared to actually take the leap and buy one due to the usual horror stories. I need to scratch the itch now and get one bought. 

Car would be to use and enjoy not an investment....

I've been watching the market for a few years and have been seeing them slowly climb. I turned down the opportunity to buy one a couple of years ago (Phil, blue SE in Rugby - If you're on here!?) for 10k and regretted it ever since.... 

What do you think to the values? They seem to be all over the place and there is a lot of rubbish for sale. Also there are a lot of (in my opinion) over priced trade cars.

I see values as follows: £15k for a useable but not perfect Stevens car (turbo only, would prefer SE) or £20ish for an equivalent G body turbo... Am I wide of the mark? I saw a couple go through an auction recently for around £15k + buyers premium but sadly missed the lots on the day. I just don't see the value at £20-25-30k etc (would rather buy a V8 Vantage for that money!)

If anyone knows of any decent cars at this kind of price point please let me know. I really want to get into Esprit ownership but I'm just not finding what I want....

Cheers,

Llewelyn

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Upgrade today to remove Google ads and support TLF.

At the low end of the scale you are going to be buying a dog. Maybe you will crack lucky - but I somewhat doubt it. I’ve never been lucky yet!

ive had five utter dogs now. Suspension rebuilds can run easily to £2k - and that’s doing it yourself. Gearboxes can be a real challenge. If you have an exhaust manifold blowing - that can mean engine out. Manifolds are £6-700 in cast - and don’t last very long - stainless is expensive but brilliant. Fuel tanks rot - 3/5 cars I’ve replaced them.

I frankly dont get Porsche’s - the prices they are achieving dwarfs any Esprit price. I have seen the one a buddy of mine has resprayed and it’s a rot box - you don’t get that with the Esprit.

if you want a sorted one - I have the 1994 motorshow S4 for sale - and that’s had all of the above done. These cars are addictive so be warned !

  • Like 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Thanks for the reply - that's true, I've seen no end of dogs at low price points... I'm not afraid of big bills and happy to accept the car will be a rolling project. I like to slowly improve an already fair car but at the same time be able to use it. I.e suspension upgrades, brakes (possibly a wilwood conversion) and any remedial work such as pull the engine and do everything while it's out, fuel tanks and so on.

Porsche prices are ridiculous, although much like Lotus ownership you get the bug and they are generally very rewarding cars to own, drive and work on.

Your car is a little later than what I want however if you could send me some details on it I'd be keen to know more...! You never know you could twist my arm :)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

She’s on here.

https://www.lotusforsale.com/ads/lotus-esprit-s4-2/

theres plenty of others on there as well - probably the widest selection outside of eBay !!

dont what ever you do under estimate the costs of some of the parts - and if you can’t do you own Labour - then garage bills will rapidily escalate. Esprits are absolutely brilliant at ramp blocking.

even a bad Esprit is amazing to drive. A good one is a whole different level 👍

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

And most of the story of her is in this thread

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I've restored 928's... I'm used to insane parts prices and extremely complex/weird set ups to try and fix... I'm sure I'll cope :)

Yours looks great! Its more than I want to spend however... 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
9 minutes ago, pete said:

I do really like that car however I'd prefer to buy privately ... I'm away on business for a fortnight next week. If Mark still has it when I get back I'll go and view it...

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The trouble is that at your preferred price  most of the cars will be dogs in the short term so better to have some kind of legal protection buying from a dealer gives you.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I'm not fussed, I want something to work on as well as drive. I think my budget is fair anyway based on the various cars I've seen sell over the past 1-2 years. I'd expect a mid level car not a total resto... The stocks red car is a nice example of a sensibly priced g turbo, if it was private I'd be happy to pay late teens to 20 for it.

Purpose of this thread by the way was to discuss values rather than tell me how much they cost to fix!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Don't recall see a g car any cheaper privately for some time

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Hi Llewelyn

The time that your perceived values were a given has passed, it has been a measured but confident two years in the Esprit market. You'll have to play a proactive waiting game, be ready to move quickly and have some luck to fulfil your criteria. 

1 hour ago, Llewelyn82 said:

Purpose of this thread by the way was to discuss values rather than tell me how much they cost to fix!

The purpose of this thread is to snuffle out a car for you I'm sure, but you'll be all the better armed to evaluate and negotiate when you do view a prospective car, given the knowledge within ;)

George

  • Thanks 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The eBay knacker went cheap last night made £6100. I was an under bidder and lost it with 3-4 seconds to go😢 

  • Haha 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I know of an up and running S3 N/A if its any interest. Road worthy car, just needs odds and sods doing. And within your budget.

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

 I think 15k would get you a N/A car but if your heart is set on the turbo then I think it might be a little shy. Saying that I have seen some high mileage slightly rough Stevens carb turbos at around the 12 to15k point so it might not be an impossible task especially if you scour the auctions and are prepared to do work yourself.

SE’s are cool but quite rare now however there is one currently on eBay at 22k which I think is very cheap and would be worth going to see if you can.

Personally I like the carb turbo cars however I have found that mechanics capable of tuning them are diminishing fast and there is a limit to how fast you can make them without losing drive-ability at lower speeds. IMO a fuel injected car is easier to live with. 

To get it within your budget you could buy a carb turbo and convert it to fuel injection later? If there is a chance that you will keep it a while then upgrading brakes is a must. Pnm engineering do decent hi spec calipers but only get the fronts done as the rear handbrake mechanism on them is rubbish!! Brembo rear calipers from later cars are probably your best bet for the back. I would also suggest getting a car with air con even if it doesn’t work as it’s easier to fix than to retro fit if you decide to keep the car. There’s lots of stuff and knowledgeable people on this forum when it comes to fixing or upgrading your car so just try and get the best example possible with the right factory options and go from there.

good luck in your search, I’m now off to look at 928’s to reaffirm that I can’t afford one 🤣

 

 

 

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Hi Llewelyn, 

I've owned a Lotus since 2000 but only an Esprit since last September when I took the plunge.

I feel that I got reasonably lucky with a N/A Stevens 1988 at just over £10K but I've spent circa £1K more upgrading the rear brakes.

I don't like buying from traders as a rule, it's hard to get the bargain that we all want, but with a specialist you will probably get one with the big stuff done leaving you to tinker with other enhancements. 

There is a member on this forum based near Chelmsford (who I don't know) that I've seen selling quality Esprits on Ebay and his descriptions always appear honest. I would want to view any stock that he has if I were buying again particularly as it is nearby to me and likely a good source of buying advice as is Barry above. 

He has just one advertised at the moment and I'm sure he won't mind me posting the details here:

https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/1986-Lotus-Esprit-Turbo/202274335072?hash=item2f187d6960:g:pWYAAOSwQXBavJ5v

 

 

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I would go for the most original car you can find - even if it needs work - ideally something that has not been crashed or damaged in any way. Mine was both not original and damaged and the combination can be pretty expensive but also mean it is more difficult to get it to where you are happy with it. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The Red G turbo at Stocks looks quite a bargain.  Why don't you make them an offer.

At the end of the day market demands determine the price of a product.  Fact is most G turbos are around 20k ish and upwards.  I think you'll be waiting for a very long time to get one below 20k and it will need to be restored and painted etc....

Its about time the Esprit was appreciated for the amazing car it is.  Higher prices will mean more cars are restored and cared for.  Long may it continue.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Welcome to TLF Llewelyn. :welcome: 

I looked at at several here in Australia before I ended up with the car I have. There were varied prices here as well, but once I had gone and looked at mine, I made the decision before I left. As soon as the wife saw it, she was sold as well. I paid a good price for it, but it was worth it in the long run. Scrimp on price and you will inevitably be buying a car that has been scrimped on.

You should duck over to the Introductions area and say hi in there as well.

Best of luck searching for a good one. The guys on here will be a great help. Except for that @Barrykearley guy. He has bought some doozies in his time. :P 

 

  • Haha 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
11 hours ago, Llewelyn82 said:

 

Purpose of this thread by the way was to discuss values rather than tell me how much they cost to fix! 

I can't clearly separate these two.

Also a good (specialist) dealer should know the value of what he's selling,  so although you won't get a bargain,  you should get what you pay for from a decent one,  and I'm sure there are some out there.

Of course if you actually want to make money,  you're not likely to from a trader - although it isn't impossible

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Generally G cars are now fetching more money - especially over the early Stevens cars, though I'm sure their time will come.

Slightly off-topic - Peter I'm in Solihull quite a bit  as my bro-in-law lives there - not seen you around!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Nello,

Im in Balsall Common, just outside Solihull.  

My Esprit has been off the road for a while.  Just had it painted and putting it back together.  It's at Paul Matty's at the moment having gearbox looked at.
Look out for me in a White Evora S sports racer.  I'm more like to be in that!

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Great Stuff-even nearer! I lived in Berkswell for about 11 years! Back in Coventry now. As a massive Petrolhead I always notice stuff driving around. I did spot a cream Evora by me the other day? I'm in Earlsdon if you are ever passing by - Mini-meet! 😎

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I'll give you a shout when i get my Esprit back. 

  • Like 1

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


×