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post #21 of 1461 (permalink) Old 04-17-2013, 06:49 AM Thread Starter
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Enclosed is for suckers.

I have shipped all my exotics open. 93% of all cars ship open. How do you think your Lotus got to the dealership where it was sold? Open.

I paid $800 last year to ship my Esprit from Southern Cal to Houston.

I just paid $900 to have my new personal 100" stretch limo shipped from Arizona to Houston.

You're just not good at getting a good price, so don't hate on me.
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post #22 of 1461 (permalink) Old 04-17-2013, 07:01 AM
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jphoenix,

Go drive that '95 S4 before you commit to anything, you will be glad you did. Keep in mind a stock S4 will run out to about 168mph, 0 - 60 in about 4.7 seconds, and still pull 27mph highway.

I've had mine since december, and still deep into getting its maintenance caught up, but I would do it again, and I am basically a G car guy for over 30 years.

The S4 is more refined than the G's, with the 95 being about the best 4 banger esprit ever made. They are holding value better than most of the other esprits right now, and are a fantastic car. Only 82 built that year, with 46 being built for the US market.

Google woodside credit, call and ask for Antonio (tell him brian in wv told you to call!), he can fix you up with great financing at a very low rate, and very long terms if you want. It made my deal work. I used hagerty for the insurance, and they did quite good too.

My S4 was less than a fairly low level new mustang or camaro, and the S4 will retain or increase in value, where the previous two will kill you the first few years on depreciation. As in lose 10-20k real fast.

Keep up with the suggested maintenance schedule, and you will find these are very reliable cars.

Once I am done with the S4's maintenance, I will be back on my S1 esprit project, and do look forward to that, but the S4 will probably be my long term 'driver'.

The s4's were the first esprits with power steering, drive it, park it, then try a G. S4 will win every time.

Brian
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post #23 of 1461 (permalink) Old 04-17-2013, 10:47 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bharper View Post
jphoenix,

Go drive that '95 S4 before you commit to anything, you will be glad you did. Keep in mind a stock S4 will run out to about 168mph, 0 - 60 in about 4.7 seconds, and still pull 27mph highway.

I've had mine since december, and still deep into getting its maintenance caught up, but I would do it again, and I am basically a G car guy for over 30 years.

The S4 is more refined than the G's, with the 95 being about the best 4 banger esprit ever made. They are holding value better than most of the other esprits right now, and are a fantastic car. Only 82 built that year, with 46 being built for the US market.

Google woodside credit, call and ask for Antonio (tell him brian in wv told you to call!), he can fix you up with great financing at a very low rate, and very long terms if you want. It made my deal work. I used hagerty for the insurance, and they did quite good too.

My S4 was less than a fairly low level new mustang or camaro, and the S4 will retain or increase in value, where the previous two will kill you the first few years on depreciation. As in lose 10-20k real fast.

Keep up with the suggested maintenance schedule, and you will find these are very reliable cars.

Once I am done with the S4's maintenance, I will be back on my S1 esprit project, and do look forward to that, but the S4 will probably be my long term 'driver'.

The s4's were the first esprits with power steering, drive it, park it, then try a G. S4 will win every time.

Brian
Well, Im a G-car nut through and through and its the ONE for me and always will be. The edgy styling and more raw experience appeals to me. However, there is NO doubt thqat the S4 is the pinnacle of the 4-banger Esprit. Ill admit that. I just never got on with the extra wing of the S4 or the Stevens body treatment. Me likes angles....

But, no one will ever pry my '87 HCi away from me. Uh Uh.

Page 65, Section LD - what ya wanna know?
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post #24 of 1461 (permalink) Old 04-17-2013, 11:24 AM Thread Starter
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Talking G cars, and interesting one's, here's a recent YouTube posting of an S3 for sale in the states. Looks nice:

Much nicer than the Wheeler Dealer car that was beat to crap and burning blue smoke out the tail pipe for their new owner.
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post #25 of 1461 (permalink) Old 04-17-2013, 11:48 AM
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With me, being an original new S1 esprit owner in the day, I certainly love the G's, but I must say, I have been pretty blown away by the S4, if you get a chance to drive one, do it.

I love the simplicity of the S1 even over the S2 or S3's, and my S1 will be building about 225hp out of the original block 907 engine (read expensive). It will get driven a lot around town, and short trips, but if I were to take off cross country, the S4 would now be it.

I have probably a years worth of work to finish up my S1, I have two, and three elites, and none run. I kept comparing the S1 with 225hp (NA) to the power/weight of the S4, and finally decided a RUNNING lotus might be a good change of pace, since I had 5 garage stuffers.

Once I saw the silk red S4 with the magnolia interior, well it was all over. Since it has been up on stands for over 3 weeks now, doing the needed maintenance and upgrades, I now have 6 garage stuffers. Hopefully just a couple of more weeks, and the girl will be back on the road.

The S4 roots are Stevens, but the bodys are actually different enough it is not really a true Stevens anymore, it was rounded even more.

Brian
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post #26 of 1461 (permalink) Old 04-17-2013, 02:16 PM
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Enclosed is for suckers.
You make a point but when I got shipping quotes, I could not get insurance for an open carrier with the 4" ground clearance. I wasn't willing to ship without insurance.

Quote:

... How do you think your Lotus got to the dealership where it was sold? Open.
But at that time, the car was completely covered in protective plastic and vulnerable pieces aren't yet installed (front spoiler). It's not the same.
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post #27 of 1461 (permalink) Old 04-17-2013, 03:34 PM
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jphoenix,

Go drive that '95 S4 before you commit to anything, you will be glad you did.
Brian
Brian, you are a bad influence! I suppose I should do as you suggest, but my willpower would be shattered I think. I really am partial to the turbo esprit.

It's not far past the blue 88, so maybe a weekend road trip is in order.

Jim
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post #28 of 1461 (permalink) Old 04-17-2013, 05:20 PM
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Talking G cars, and interesting one's, here's a recent YouTube posting of an S3 for sale in the states. Looks nice:
1985 Lotus Esprit S3 - 1 Owner, Original Paint Survivor - For Sale - YouTube

Much nicer than the Wheeler Dealer car that was beat to crap and burning blue smoke out the tail pipe for their new owner.
Yes - thats a fantastic model. Excellent NA engine and series 3 reliability/updates. Just dont see those in the US much, thats for sure!


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post #29 of 1461 (permalink) Old 04-17-2013, 05:56 PM
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I have shipped all my exotics open. 93% of all cars ship open. How do you think your Lotus got to the dealership where it was sold? Open.
I agree with your recommendation about open carriers, but you're wrong about the Lotus going to the dealership. The Esprit was shipped to Dealers in enclosed carrier. Horseless Carriage had Lotus contract for most of the 1988+ Esprit period. Even the M100 was shipped enclosed. I wasn't involved with the Elise and later, so could not say for sure.

My Esprit purchase was shipped from MN to NY by open carriage last year. I know a shipping broker who specializes in difficult to handle vehicles. Most open carriers can't handle an Esprit without dragging the front during loading. Call Randall Terry at 706-587-8119, tell him Don from Elmira, NY, sent you. He is a broker, and has carriers that can load the car without damage.
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post #30 of 1461 (permalink) Old 04-17-2013, 07:24 PM
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Jim,

Good luck with your search, get what pleases you, just take your time and make sure that happens.

Brian
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post #31 of 1461 (permalink) Old 04-25-2013, 04:28 PM
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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,

Jim
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post #32 of 1461 (permalink) Old 04-25-2013, 06:10 PM
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80c is the correct running temp. C service at 24k miles is good news. Seems to have a problem with the electrical, two alternators replaced?

drivers mirror may just mean its connectors need cleaned, four screws and the drivers door interior panel lifts off, and both connectors are visible, so might be easy fix, I had same problem on the passengers door mirror.

there is a saying in the lotus community that if it is not dripping some oil, probably none remains.

Mileage not all that high, treat it right and should be good for double that, or more.

The s4 series is very popular and in demand, and that tends to keep the prices up, which is a good thing. Probably a better investment than some of the other models.

With your background, I doubt their is much of anything you could not do service wise. Most common problems people have had before, and makes researching most repairs pretty easy. But you will find quite a few things that do require above human abilities to do, because of access, or lack there of, to what you need to work on. Seems my car has had many of those tasks to do, because the previous owner did not do a lot of maintenance over the 15 years he had it. I would, however, still buy my car again even with all the little things I have been chasing on it, just hope to drive it again soon!

If you like mechanical work, and challenges, you will love a lotus, no matter what model. Once everything is sorted, and keep up with the recommend services, you will find they are actually quite reliable, and the service required will decrease if you keep it exercised. If you ignore the service, stuff may actually start falling off!

With any flaws or faults, I would consider their price a little high, and would use anything you find to get the price down. I would start at about 24.5, which is 4k more than I paid for mine with under 20k miles. Perfect examples could sell I expect close to nada retail, which was 35k the last time I looked.

Good luck on your adventure!

Brian

Last edited by bharper; 04-25-2013 at 06:24 PM.
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post #33 of 1461 (permalink) Old 04-25-2013, 06:13 PM
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Jim - a common minor oil leak is the seal at the back of one of the cams. Not hard to replace, if that is the source. Obviously you'll want to inspect for the leak source, possibly on a lift. Brake pedal effort was high on Esprit of that era, they used a GM master cylinder. It would seem a bit odd for someone used to modern cars.
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post #34 of 1461 (permalink) Old 04-25-2013, 06:57 PM
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Good info, thanks. I just sold a Citroen DS with a mushroom brake pedal, used no pedal travel, just pressure, very different feel!

Jim
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post #35 of 1461 (permalink) Old 04-25-2013, 06:58 PM Thread Starter
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I had an SE and I loved the pedal feel. It wasn't that it was hard or a lot of effort to push, but it came on early without having to push the pedal all the way down and it never felt spongy. I would call it solid instead of firm or high effort. I wish my other cars since then felt like the SE brakes because when they were working well, they were very confidence inspiring.

Now if the system is not working right, it could be the accumulator, which is a very common issue, and you used to be able to get Jag or GM versions cheap (it was a while ago for me, so I don't remember).
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post #36 of 1461 (permalink) Old 04-25-2013, 07:20 PM
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The plastic horn buttons in the GM airbag wheel are crap and become brittle with time. I doubt that is of concern. Have to remove the airbag to replace the switches but pretty easy job.

80C is pretty much the minimum running temp, you won't get full boost below about 82C. 85-95C is a good range. The dash gauge is not known for accuracy though and could be a few degrees off...

Jim
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post #37 of 1461 (permalink) Old 04-25-2013, 07:24 PM
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Good stuff, thanks guys. I do hope to replace that ugly steering wheel with an Else wheel someday.
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post #38 of 1461 (permalink) Old 04-25-2013, 08:16 PM
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Bought mine in Texas, had Star Motors check it out (Garth still worked there) and drove it home to Tampa Florida AND took the missus along for the ride.

No problems - performed well. I think if you have a competent mechanic check out the car, you should not be afraid to drive it home unless you know it has issues.

Life's an adventure!

Tom Mieczkowski
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post #39 of 1461 (permalink) Old 04-26-2013, 03:26 AM
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not normally a fan of green cars but that one looks pretty nice! As much as I want prices to be high, I'd try to get them down a couple grand and also get them to throw in (don't see in your post above having been done) getting brake and clutch fluid replaced.
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post #40 of 1461 (permalink) Old 04-26-2013, 05:12 AM
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The car looks like a terrific buy, based on the description...go for it!

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