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Upgrading dilemma.. Elise to Exige


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Foolishly drove an Exige at Hethel a few weeks ago. Loved it immediately. The handling, power, noise and finish.. all fantastic.

So I've done the research and understood what the S3 Exige's are all about. It would be a third car so only come out for fun like my current Lotus. Perfect spec would be a 380 Sport with Carbon Pack and airconditioning.. bit like @DJW car.

I've found one in the right colour too🤦‍♂

Now the dilemma, only have space for one toy in the garage and didn't think I'd ever be able to part with my Jim Clark T25 Elise SC. It's a brilliant car to drive. With the Exige S underpinnings you can really drive it without compromise to newer cars and the bespoke T25 BRG livery makes it a perfect car whichever way you look at it. Limited to 25 cars it has exclusivity and makes people of all ages smile when I'm out and about in it. This is a quality I really value. Bit like my old Evora, people react well to it instead of the opposite. Everyday I see it parked next to my daily and it makes me happy! Its in concours condition and 100% OEM just like you'd see it in a factory collection. It's my perfect car that I absolutely love! 

Been going from I've gotta have an Exige 380 to there's no way I'm selling the Jim Clark🤦‍♂🤦‍♂

I'm completely undecided. What would you do? 

Cheers👨🏽😉

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  • Gold FFM

I think you’ll get a real mix of responses.

For me, I’d say stick with the Elise. Others will (and possibly correctly) say to swap for an Exige.

I think you’ll enjoy driving the Elise at 10/10s more than you would an Exige at 8/10s.

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Current: 2021 Lotus Elise Cup 250 FE in Isotope Green, Red Alcantara Interior, Carbon Aero Kit, AirCon, Carpets & Mats, NVH pack, Cruise Control, Stereo, Red Calipers.
Now Gone2018 Lotus Elise Sport 220 in Metallic Blue, Alcantara Pack, Forged Wheels, 2piece brakes, AirCon, Hard/Soft Tops, Red Calipers, Stereo, Interior Colour Pack, NVH Pack, Carpets, Mats.
Previously Owned: 2016 Lotus Evora 400, 2010 Lotus Evora NA, 2003 VX220 Supercharged, 2001 VX220 Lightning Yellow
Follow my Lotus journey here: http://www.FaceBook.com/HandmadeInHethel

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If the Exige would be a third car, what else aside from your daily car & the Elise would you consider parting with? Your Elise is lovely and would be a great companion to a V6 Exige.

Edited by tim_marra
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Key questions: What is the right color?

Why buying a sport when you could buy a 380 cup?!!  (and sell a kidney I will hear some say). Evem more beautiful to me.

To be honest having only one lotus and only three cars sounds like insanity to me.... I think you should work on parking and have both.

Would you consider parking the Elise away and swap it from time to time or take it out of storage for the summer only.

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Brij, 

Just to add my voice here, although I own an Exige for me there would have to be a very good reason to get rid of your awesome JC T25! It's STUNNING. 

I guess for me the biggest deciding factor would be what sort of driving experience you're after? If it's predominantly a road car, I'd stick with the Elise for sure. As addictive as the extra power is in the Exige, really it's too quick for the road so the experience is much more teasing it down the road rather than grabbing it by the scruff of the neck and giving it full beans. I know what I prefer in that scenario for certain and it would be your Elise. 

Everything you've said makes me think that unless you're tracking it a lot, you love the T25 too much to get rid of it and once the novelty of the extra grunt of the Exige had worn off you may end up regretting it. 

Plus you could always find another Exige but finding another mint factory original T25 would be a much more difficult task. 

I know how you feel, I've had a similar dilemma recently. 

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From buying way too many cars, I have come to realise that as soon as you contemplate changing your car, you inevitably will, however much you try to kid yourself.  So go for it ;)

I’ve loved the Exige V6 as on 3rd one now,  I find them perfect for the road and the 380+ range have  laugh out loud exhausts that make the car fun at sensible speeds.  

I usually keep my cars 3-6 months, as life is too short not to try different cars, so will be looking to change mine in the next month I expect, although struggling to find a car to replace it with .  I don’t need more power and the looks and spec of the 380 are perfect imho.  Now I’m questioning myself lol. 

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Previously owned :Exige 380,  Exige 350,  Evora 400,  Exige V6S,  Esprit GT3,  2-11 SC,  Evora S,  Elite 501

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tough one,  its one of those only answerable once youve lived with the exige for 6 months...

i honestly think youd regret selling the JC once the novelty has worn off...  

part of the reason you and others love the JC is its unique, brings out emotion, 

an exige is just another fast car... unless you get the new Type 25 special....

if you can afford both and to loose a couple of k... get an exige for a while then see how you feel in 6 months..

give you a time to put toe in the water without risk of huge mistake... 

buy carefully you may loose only a couple of K,  look at this as car hire .. a worth while amount if it saves you the heartache of realising you made a big mistake....

made a few of those in my time too!

 

 

selfless plug..

would love your  jc if you decide to sell...

 

 

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Keep the Elise. From doing the scare yourself sensible day recently I realised I would never push the Exige or Evora far enough but the Elise I feel I would be able to push it enough to get feedback close to the edge. I’m not a great drive but felt that I could push the Elise harder without killing myself. The JC will have a fantastic residual value to .

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Just back from from Morocco and thought about the comments so far. Thank you all for these and the ones I've just read. 

Some more thoughts..

As much as I enjoy trackdays (my 55-60 retirement plan!!) I can't do them often because of work and family commitments (two girls aged 5 & 8 that love the "green racing car"!) and a profession that always seems to get in the way! I manage about three a year. So my car isn't a trackday warrior. The Elise definitely comes out, i use it all year round.. it's wonderful taking the roof off and just going for a drive even when it's a bit cold but crisp with the sun out and the heater on full whack.

Basically I'm just getting a bit of car fever after two days at the Lotus Driving Academy. The itch to try something new.. Actually what I've got in the JC is all I've ever really wanted in a fun car. It's pure and focussed and mine is barely run in.. I need to focus my attention on using her more rather than being seduced by another!!!! Haha😂

For those of you with Exige's I'm properly impressed by how much faster they are. Never really appreciated how serious a performance car they are. I was about 5 to 6 seconds per lap faster in the 350 after only 2 laps practice. Martin D then took me round for a hot lap at the end of the day.. Fast, agile and a lot of fun! Every bit as exciting an experience as the best from Stuttgart. Made me want one instantly!! 

So, having digested all your comments have decided I'm going to keep the Elise for another 12 months as a cooling off period. I don't want to regret selling it. 

Cheers,

Brij😉

@andyj007 I'll remember you, if I ever do you'll have first dibs. 

@CocoPops Looking forward to sorting a trackday meet at some point in the Elise's. I'm doing Castle Combe with B & C on the 10th May. Think Maxine still has about 4 space left. 

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@DJW your car is stunning👍🏼

9 hours ago, MesTCS said:

Brij, 

Just to add my voice here, although I own an Exige for me there would have to be a very good reason to get rid of your awesome JC T25! It's STUNNING.

I know how you feel, I've had a similar dilemma recently. 

Thanks for this. 👍🏼

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12 hours ago, PAR said:

Key questions: What is the right color?

Why buying a sport when you could buy a 380 cup?!!  (and sell a kidney I will hear some say). Evem more beautiful to me.

To be honest having only one lotus and only three cars sounds like insanity to me.... I think you should work on parking and have both.

Would you consider parking the Elise away and swap it from time to time or take it out of storage for the summer only.

I was looking at this one in Carbon Grey.. My old Evora was the same, not for everyone but has an aggressive edge to it that I like.

Like your idea about the parking solution. I might have a cost free solution.. park one at my brothers place. Need to convince him to get a lift and let me park it on top of his Speciale!😁

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4 hours ago, auRouge said:

@CocoPops Looking forward to sorting a trackday meet at some point in the Elise's. I'm doing Castle Combe with B & C on the 10th May. Think Maxine still has about 4 space left. 

It’s a few weeks too early for me. It will only have a few miles on it by then :lol:

I might try and pop down. I need to have it run in by mid June for Anglesey.

Current: 2021 Lotus Elise Cup 250 FE in Isotope Green, Red Alcantara Interior, Carbon Aero Kit, AirCon, Carpets & Mats, NVH pack, Cruise Control, Stereo, Red Calipers.
Now Gone2018 Lotus Elise Sport 220 in Metallic Blue, Alcantara Pack, Forged Wheels, 2piece brakes, AirCon, Hard/Soft Tops, Red Calipers, Stereo, Interior Colour Pack, NVH Pack, Carpets, Mats.
Previously Owned: 2016 Lotus Evora 400, 2010 Lotus Evora NA, 2003 VX220 Supercharged, 2001 VX220 Lightning Yellow
Follow my Lotus journey here: http://www.FaceBook.com/HandmadeInHethel

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Sorted! One more satisfied TLF member.

I am quite partial to the color as well...

To me (a 15 year Elise owner) the Elise is an instant classic that is to be owned for a life time. It is probably at the stage where value is going to increase from there so it is not even a cost reason (although it can be a  cash reason and space issue of course). As a single man, the Elise was my daily, i took it to the other side of the world when I moved and back when I returned to the UK. Nowadays I park it away and rediscover it when the summer comes back. 

Exiges, Evoras are now proper giant killers, very different thing so ownning those at one point is great (despite my 400, I can’t help salivating when I see the 380 cup at my nearby dealer and even wonder if I should have the three...)

In short you should keep the Elise notwithstanding any other consideration so getting the exige is a standalone decision. Can you take the cost and depreciation, do you find one you like? Then go for it! It is probably not a car you will keep forever as performance will get updated and you may itch something even faster but there should be few years of fun in it. 

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On 27/04/2018 at 07:49, CocoPops said:

It’s a few weeks too early for me. It will only have a few miles on it by then :lol:

I might try and pop down. I need to have it run in by mid June for Anglesey.

Anglesey.. sounds good, never done it but heard it's a lot of fun.. bit of a trek for me from SW London but if I'm not airborne am up for it. Maybe sort out a Goodwood trackday later in the year?

@Bibs B&C's Goodwood trackday a few years ago was brilliant.. Goodwood themselves do trackdays.. Id be happy to do some background homework and organise something for TLF members.. Has anyone on here tried to organise something? May have missed it.. Shall we? 

Photo taken from Zolder last year, awesome ex F1 track that suits Lotus!

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I've gone from an Exige V6 to an Elise 250 Cup (via an Evora 400). I've no regrets, it's actually great to be back in an Elise after too many years away.

Yes, the Exige is a lot faster but that doesn't necessarily make it more fun, just makes it more likely you'll lose your licence! Also, your Type 25 JC will be appreciating.

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  • 2 weeks later...
On 26/04/2018 at 20:06, andyj007 said:

tough one,  its one of those only answerable once youve lived with the exige for 6 months...

i honestly think youd regret selling the JC once the novelty has worn off...  

part of the reason you and others love the JC is its unique, brings out emotion, 

an exige is just another fast car... unless you get the new Type 25 special....

if you can afford both and to loose a couple of k... get an exige for a while then see how you feel in 6 months..

give you a time to put toe in the water without risk of huge mistake... 

buy carefully you may loose only a couple of K,  look at this as car hire .. a worth while amount if it saves you the heartache of realising you made a big mistake....

made a few of those in my time too!

 

 

selfless plug..

would love your  jc if you decide to sell...

 

 

@andyj007

I saw and test drove this very car at Scott Walkers in 2013, it's lovely with upgraded Ohlins.. Was like new then with similar mileage so must be a collector.. looks like she's for sale!!

https://m.carandclassic.co.uk/car/C982013

Last one that was available (to the best of my knowledge) was in the US last year.

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  • 4 months later...

For those of you interested.. an update.

Elise had to go. Right time to sell as I just wasn’t using her that much this summer and I’m not a collector. Its a great car, one of my favourite Lotus but just not quick enough to keep up with my brother and mates on euro jaunts down to the Alps and the occasional trackday. 

Unsurprisingly sold very quickly through Will B. (highly recommend Will, an absolute gentleman).

Was really excited and fired up by the prospect of a modern Lotus with supercar performance figures.

Organised a test drive with my dealer,,,, loved it. 

Plan A - Exige 380 Sport (Track Pack).

Dealer didn’t have the right colour/spec so did some hunting and found a car. Couple of days before viewing I did some final research on that niggly thing - “noise”...

Cut to the chase.. in OEM spec (+ optional extras including lightweight Titanium exhaust) you can’t track it because it exceeds 105db... (up to 115dB on full chat apparently).

I then speak to all the guys in the know about modifying and it takes time, is non OEM, expensive and you enter a grey area with regards to the warranty. There’s also no guarantee that after you’ve quietened it down your extra 30bhp will still be there and / or you get an ECU problem...

Might be ok, might not but am I going to spend the thick end of £70k on something that might cause me grief? Exige 350 is an option but I’m just not drawn to it like the new stuff. I really like the new cars spec 🤯

Gutted, frustrated and deflated with modern Lotus at the mo. It’s a track car you can’t track in OEM format without the risk of being black flagged.

Plan B - move on until the Geely chapter has begun in 2020.

In the mean time, GT4 ClubSport it is🤷‍♂️

 

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