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Looking for a source: key and handbook

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Having been a member for almost 12 hours now, perhaps I shouldn’t start right in by taking before I give. However, as a Lotus newby I have precious little knowledge to share. So - here are a couple questions I couldn’t answer using the search function.

First, my car is a 1997 Turbo Esprit V8. I am the second owner and bought it with every service record from new. But, no original key (only one after market key) and no owner’s manual (I think Lotus calls it an owner’s handbook?). Any potential sources or leads would be greatly appreciated!



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Welcome Ray! I have little knowledge about the V8, but I'm sure you'll get some answers from other members soon enough. 😉


I have made many mistakes in my life. Buying a multiple Lotus is not one of them.


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Hello Ray and welcome to TLF.

I have a '96 V8 with the handbook and what I believe to be one original key. Handbook first:



I think it is just one of those items that you have to keep an eye out for on eBay, Gumtree etc and be patient. You could try South West Lotus or Lotusbits, they might have one. 



Here's my two sets (aftermarket alarm system fob btw) along with the page in the handbook. The words describe a key with a light built in and a tear off ID tag. The one on the right looks the same but with no light and there's a "RETAIN TAG SEE OWNERS MANUAL" attached to it. So it might well be original. The one on the left is a clone like yours I think. Anyway, I wouldn't be too bothered about them, they look like pretty standard GM items to me (my old Astra was similar) and there's no chip in them or anything. Your chances of finding an original to fit your car are pretty much zero I would have thought.

@march, what are your keys like sir?

Hope that helps.


I tempted my Esprit V8 IS in bits...(sob)

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Hi @swindon_alan,

My keys are the same as the ones in the manual, one with a light and push button and the spare as just a plastic holder like the upper one in your photograph (the tag has broken off and disappeared from my spare unfortunately).

I think the basic keys are from are originally from Vauxhall (I am sure someone will be able to confirm exact model). The one with the light I am pretty sure is no longer available.

As a note my main key came without the button, internal gubbbins and light. After much trawling through second hand keys on Ebay I found that a Rover key with push button light matched all the bits - the only difference being the button is slightly domed when the original I believe is flat (I never found a matching key new or otherwise in my hunt). A bit anal I know but may be useful to someone.

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I definitely have set up a repeating search on eBay and similar site, but I think I will try to find a way to do so on eBay UK also (my search is on the US site).

If anyone can tell me the year/make/model of a vehicle that uses the same blank I should be able to look it up in the locksmith shop manual to order a blank. The key cutters seem to be computer-driven, so the blank can’t be cut without knowing a representative year/make/model either. Of course, production numbers (and import numbers) were so small that the blank manufacturers here don’t list Lotus for 1997.

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Hi Ray,

The key blank is a JMA "OPWYP" (JMA 2111).  You can order them easily online and bring them to a locksmith who knows how to cut "sidewinder" keys.  The normal stores with key-cutting machines like WalMart will have no idea how to do this, so find a competent real locksmith.

New lighted key blanks are still available, but I don't think you can buy them without buying the whole lock set.  Replacing the whole lock set requires you to change the ignition lock (fairly easy) and the door locks (less easy).  I've posted a pic of what the current lighted key looks like, along with the JMA blank.


Photo Sep 11, 7 53 17 AM.jpg

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I believe these to be the other applications (in addition to the Lotus) for this key blank made as:

JMA 2111 and JMA OPWYP

Silca YM 27P

Ilco S30YSP

Opel - Vauxhall Calibra 1995-1997
Opel - Vauxhall Cavalier 1995-1996
Opel - Vauxhall Vectra 1995-2002
Opel - Vauxhall Omega 1995-2003
Opel - Vauxhall Sintra 1996-1999
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On 11/09/2018 at 14:01, Rayberne said:

Stuart, to be clear - you are looking for a manual for the ‘02? I will definitely add to the search and get one if it comes up!

Sorry-to be clear  i have the handbook like Alan above (no cover though!) and my car is an 01/02 model. Happy to swap. 

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