OK, so my emotions have taken the upper hand and the green '95 S4 I was lusting after is back in play, going to go take a look on Saturday and do a thorough inspection. I really like the '85 Black Turbo nearby, but maybe this is a smarter buy, I can go either way, but this beauty sure is sweet!
I'm an aircraft mechanic by trade, so should not have a problem finding obvious issues. But I have no experience with the Esprit, so I thought I would toss this out to the group for validation, thoughts, comments and warnings for this car at this mileage and age.
It's a beautiful car, in as close to perfect condition as one can tell from photos, has 37k miles, lived in Seattle almost its entire life (until last year when it went to Spokane - an upgrade weather-wise!) fantastic Lotus Esprit S4
I grilled the dealer pretty well (Jaremko Nissan), they have a very good reputation, owner is a racer, salesman is very helpful in researching the records to give me a completed PPI checklist before I even go see it.
I asked him to give me a run-down on the physical condition, specifically, apparent signs of wear, leaks or inop things, the quoted text below is his reply. I do not have manuals for the car (where does one get a set of maintenance manuals for the 95 Esprit?) so no idea if a water temp of 80C is reasonable, but will do some research tonight.
I'm heading over Saturday, I expect it will be as advertised, but any feedback on the report below will be greatly appreciated from you guys. Two things he said is that the drivers mirror does not operate electrically, should be straightforward to troubleshoot, and the horn buttons are inop, but he has new buttons in a box for it. I'll be interested in what's up with that. An airbag steering wheel - hmmmm, I'll be a bit wary of that.
Also, my PPI checklist has many more items on it, not reported here (rotor thickness, compression test, etc.) so everything will get a good look before I sign the line. But I expect there are things I don't know about.
His response: (Car had not been driven for about 3 weeks)
"--- Jim - Just got back from about a 15 mile drive. Car runs strong. Ran at a constant 80c water temp. oil temp never went above an indicated 70c. I am letting the car sit to see if we have any fluid leaks.
I did notice a bit of an oil spot where the car was parked in the shop, but by no means severe. ……could have also been from another car…
I did notice that the brake pedal pressure seemed a bit firm and contacted the PO to see if this was what he noticed driving the car as well as I don’t have a point of reference (not an Esprit guy, but have an Elise and Exige). It has been a little while since I have driven the car (3 weeks)……can’t say I noticed or didn’t notice it before….. ???????
All in all a very nice running car. Shifts great, accelerates nicely, no odd noises, steering is precise, the car is not “darty”.
Service history in the records:
New frt brake pads and rotors, rear brake pads and rotors 11/26/12
Safety inspection at 37,325 miles (car now has 37,776 miles) at Park Place (Seattle) 6-20-12
Alternator replaced 37,255 miles 6-12-12
Clutch slave cyl replaced 37255 miles 6-12-12
Tires at 32,144 miles (Continental somethings, getting date codes)
A service @ 32,331 miles
A service at 29,103 miles, frt rotors turned, noted slight leak at right out-put shaft (apparently fixed, but no details on the WO, does output shaft = drive shaft?), adjust e brake switch
Alternator hinge stud @28,765 miles
A service @27,533 miles, repair boost gauge ground, remove flap from back pressure valve, machine rear brake rotors.
A service @ 26769 miles replace alternator
25653 spark plus replaced
24131 miles….cam belt, C service
More records for prior to 24,100 miles, not detailed here.
Here's a link to the ad:
Thanks in advance for any input,