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Exige 4C project


TrevS

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Hi all

I’ve been a long time lurker but finally decided to register and start asking some questions. I am currently in the process of selling my 1967 E-type Jag and am looking for something a bit different as a replacement. At the moment the E-type just doesn’t get used and I am missing having something more modern where the fun is in the driving not just the sense of occasion.

In the past I’ve owned an Aston Martin V8 Vantage which was lovely as a mini GT car but wasn’t really a true sports car and after spending a lot of time looking at reviews etc I really think an Exige V6 S could be the perfect car for me. I want a car that can be used for weekend B road driving, going to events etc and the Exige ticks a lot of boxes.

There is however one sticking point, the Alfa 4C. I know the 4C is not the best driving car, there is no manual box, it’s too wide etc etc but I keep finding myself brushing aside the negative aspects of the car simply because I love the looks. I am a designer by trade and the styling is important to me (hence buying the e-type) and unfortunately I just don’t get that same feeling when I look at an Exige S. Don’t get me wrong an Exige is a cracking looking car, very purposeful and I love the dimensions of the S3’s with the extended rear subframe they look like a proper junior supercar but there is something about the little Italian car that I can’t shake

Anyway the purpose of this post is going to be a strange one. If the Lotus is my perfect driving car, and the 4C is the car I want to have sat on my driveway to look at then I started thinking about the possibility of a coachbuilt Exige S project. There has been a big resurgence in coachbuilding recently the 4C itself has just had a makeover in the form of the Mole Costruzione Artigianale and it strikes me that the Lotus Exige V6 S is the perfect platform.

So what I have been thinking about is looking at a project build using an Exige and then implementing the 4C styling aspects into the car. It sounds crazy I know but with the way the clams are constructed for the Exige I really think it’s a project that’s worth exploring. So initial questions are does anyone know if the Exige platform has been used before by other manufacturers/coach builders (hennessy etc) and what’s the most extreme lotus project/transformation you seen to date? Also am I crazy?

To kick things off here is a very basic idea render I knocked up to show you the sort of thing I want to create

Before

exige-before.jpg

After

exige-4c.jpg

Thanks

 

Trev

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So basically - new front clam that copies the alfa one, gopping alfa lights, alfa wheels and stupid (ie wrong) badge. Seems doable if you throw enough money at someone, but don't know why anyone would bother and it's not going to be easy to re-sell if you ever want to move it on

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Ha thanks everyone for the comments. I guess the problem for me is the 4C isn't quite what I hoped Alfa was going to produce so looking for a way to make something closer to what I want. I also really fancy starting another project build, resto mod etc. I've restored cars in the past and spent a good few years building a GT40 replica etc so I know of the challenges and rewards that these projects can bring. I guess I've always fancied having a go at building something unique for myself and there are some amazing designers, fabricators and builders that I've got to know over the years so I thought it was some worth at least thinking about.

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There was a chap at Spa last year with a 4C, he'd increased the power, put it on a set of Ohlins which could be adjusted from the boot and remapped the gearbox. Looked good and went well. That's what I'd do if I were you. 

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Can I ask where you work as a designer ? As a designer to me the 4C shapes are not match to the Exige (even with its weirdness), specially in flesh, even more obvious side by side on those pictures .. (side view not bad ok). That picture of your e type is at Bicester right ? And yes you are crazy, but if that is really what you want, do it.  Might need some long bracket to fit the fatter body parts of the 4C.. 

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Personally think the 4C proportions aren’t that nice. The driving experience is even worse, it’s got the compromise of a Lotus, but with none of the positives. The steering feel is the worst of any car I’ve driven, you have to guess what the wheel is going to do...

personally I love the Exige, although certain bits need updating now.  I’d love to one day design and build new headlights (which actually work!).

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Moving from an e-type to a Franken-Exige sounds like quite a move. How would you be using the car? Is open-roof motoring a priority? Wouldn’t the Evora be a tempting proposition, given your motoring history? With the savings on the coach building (and headaches) you could also afford an Elise, too.

 

A9375B55-1F9E-4DB3-B5BF-F29B34A1C12A.jpeg

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1 hour ago, GFWilliams said:

Personally think the 4C proportions aren’t that nice.

Totally agree, I love the design direction of the Alfa but it's too stubby and compact. The Exige has much better proportions.

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Decided to sell the E-type mainly due to lack of use and the fact it's value has gone up so much in recent years. It's now nearly a £100k car and so I am more cautious with it, when and how it's driven etc and it really has just become a garage queen. Don't get me wrong, it's absolutely stunning and great to drive but it's a box I've ticked and life is too short not to try new things.

As a replacement I was mainly looking at buying something much cheaper that I could drive and enjoy without it being mileage sensitive or the weather having to be 100% dry etc. It's a weekend car so doesn't have to have any real practicality although some occasional back seats have been a consideration. Also not after a open top car, generally I like pretty looking coupes. Also I am certainly not a track day warrior but enjoy fast b road driving, touring etc and really being part of a community would be nice as I've really enjoyed attending club events with Jaguar and Aston.

My short list is currently a 997.2 C4S, Exige V6 S, TVR Tuscan, Alfa 4C or Another Aston V8 vantage. The Porsche is still the most likely candidate as it does everything really well and isn't so specialist/occasional but when you start looking at cars with £50k budget there is lot's of choice and some proper curve balls that you start to consider. I've thought about a Lister Bell Lancia Stratos replica, BMW i8, Audi R8, Jaguar XKR-S etc but am now at the point now where I need to start narrowing down exactly what I want. On paper an Evora is perfect but again it's not really pulling at the heart strings.

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16 minutes ago, TrevS said:

On paper an Evora is perfect but again it's not really pulling at the heart strings.

I do understand that the Evora does not have the same kind of beauty as the e-type and that a beautiful design is a priority to you. The funny thing with the Evora is that despite probably not being as beautiful as an e-type, the fact that it is (one of the few) mid-engined 2+2 makes its design and lines very challenging and special, quite a beauty given the challenge, at least to my eyes.

A Stratos replica must be something.

Good luck with your decision process. That is a nice decision you have to take. 🙂

 

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After leaving (again) my 111R at the assistance due this time at the AC condensator dead, i spent some time to the Alfa dealer near there.

I try the 4c and i find it very very nice, well maden inside, more car than lotus, the engine has more torque than my 280hp VF kit and the dual clutch gearbox is a paradise versus the horrible gearstick leverism of mine.

I don't find the steering feels so bad.

If the 4C did not ashed by Marchionne and his mania of only supercars over 250.000 euros i seriously consider to swap, it is a half way from Lotus and Cayman.

Edited by IcemanTM
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  • Gold FFM

I have an Evora and a 4C coupe, this after having numerous Exige and Elise over the years. The 4C is fantastic value I think, carbon tub, double clutch auto system (which for me in London is perfect), sounds great and looks great. Yes steering can be problematic but there are ways to minimise that. Recommended.

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Why not save yourself a fare amount of cash and get an S2 Exige and put up with an aluminium tub instead of a carbon one.

Find one in the colour you want with a decent gearbox, change the box oil to Redline MT90 and go for an S240 or a 260 you probably wont want to go any faster so glad I got mine not much good for anything other than just driving but then that's the point isn't it

_CM18599v1.jpg

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7 hours ago, TrevS said:

A few years ago I looked at the feasibility of creating a re-imagination of the De Tomaso Pantera using a donor chassis. It never happened by I definitely have the desire to create some sort of custom car in my lifetime

 

Dany, is that you??!? 

620_5a86e83113cc5.jpg

 

:rofl:

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9 hours ago, Arregueti said:

Moving from an e-type to a Franken-Exige sounds like quite a move. How would you be using the car? Is open-roof motoring a priority? Wouldn’t the Evora be a tempting proposition, given your motoring history? With the savings on the coach building (and headaches) you could also afford an Elise, too.

 

A9375B55-1F9E-4DB3-B5BF-F29B34A1C12A.jpeg

I am a very simple electrician but the one on the right looks the more complete car and the lights on the  4C are hideous,, sorry  

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I'm no designer, but when I look at the key features of the 4C (glass house, pillars, roof, side scoops, width, rear hatch, overall silhouette, front & rear overhangs, wheel size) its much closer to an Evora than an Exige.... are you sure you're considering the right Lotus ?

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  • Gold FFM
On 27/06/2018 at 23:45, bruchion said:

Where did you think Alfa got those lines in the first place.

 

This is what I've been asking for years. There are so many similarities it cannot be a coincidence. 

For me the interior quality of the 4c put me off. I considered one briefly, but all the plastics seem cheap and nasty. Like taking a beef wellington and putting ketchup on it.

Seems to me that for the OP an Evora might be a better starting point - it will take the miles better, be more comfortable whilst doing them and is closer to the 4C in looks.

A Lotus is for driving, pork is for breakfast.

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