New 1991 Lotus Elan Owner... 91 original miles!? - LotusTalk - The Lotus Cars Community
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post #1 of 20 (permalink) Old 08-17-2018, 07:21 AM Thread Starter
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New 1991 Lotus Elan Owner... 91 original miles!?

I was hoping to get some help regarding a 1991 Elan I just purchased yesterday. I guess you can call it a barn find however it sat at an automotive repair shop’s lot for years. It has 91 miles on it. Not 91000. It still has the factory tires on it and the factory oil which is still clean.

The automotive repair shop was clearing out cars that had been left by previous owners who did not want to pay their bills. They were getting rid of several cars and one of them happened to be this Elan that I purchased. According to the shop this car sat in the same spot uncovered from the elements for 6 years. So it has the clear coat peel on the fenders and the top has 1 small tear. They’ve had the car for longer than that though. They said that the original owner had this car shipped from England and never used it. The owner had an expensive car collection and over the years he ended up giving the Elan to the automotive shop in exchange for doing work on his more expensive cars. The car cranked just fine but it had no gasoline in it. I’m going to change out the oil and go through it before attempting to start it.

Here is the problem. There is no title. I did a VIN check and it is not reported stolen. The shop provided me with the 3 original keys for the car and a signed bill of sale. The car has never even been registered ever. So the dmv has no record of the car at all in their database.

Does anyone have any suggestions as to getting a title for this car? Or am I stuck with using it for track use only or for parts? I refuse to part it out since I doubt there is any other Elans with this low mileage.

My other question is where does one get a windshield? The windshield on this car was cracked.
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post #2 of 20 (permalink) Old 08-17-2018, 11:50 AM
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Congrats! Sounds like a fantastic find!

Suggest joining Lotus Elan Central - Lotus Elan Central ? Index page
It's focused 100% on the M100.

Cheers,
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post #3 of 20 (permalink) Old 08-17-2018, 01:11 PM
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Do not start it
Repeat
Do not start it

Change the timing belt

Now
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post #4 of 20 (permalink) Old 08-18-2018, 10:03 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by exigegus View Post
Do not start it
Repeat
Do not start it

Change the timing belt

Now
Totally agree. The Isuzu motor is an interference engine. Hate to see a low mileage engine damaged.


Also agree that LotusElanCental.com is a must for any M100 owners.

Since this vehicle was brought from England a long time ago, it may be that it was not properly imported. Since it is now 25+ years old, it possibly could be registered. Might be worth checking the VIN decoder to learn more.

Don Sladek
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post #5 of 20 (permalink) Old 08-19-2018, 05:58 AM Thread Starter
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Thanks for the suggestions. Looks like i will do the timing belt and fluid changes.

The vin decoder helped! Thanks. It seems this car is a US legal car according to the vin however it was never registered in the US.


I tried registering at Elan central however I kept getting an error during registration. It asks for Colin Chapman’s initials however it keeps telling me that I have an invalid answer even though I’ve enter CC several times and several different variations. I even tried to contact the forum admins but even that link doesn’t work!
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post #6 of 20 (permalink) Old 08-19-2018, 06:53 AM
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Quote:
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. It asks for Colin Chapmanís initials however it keeps telling me that I have an invalid answer even though Iíve enter CC several times and several different variations. I even tried to contact the forum admins but even that link doesnít work!
Maybe try ACBC ? Anthony Collin Bruce Chapman, I think.

because racecar
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post #7 of 20 (permalink) Old 08-19-2018, 07:55 AM Thread Starter
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ACBC Worked! Thank you!
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post #8 of 20 (permalink) Old 08-20-2018, 07:14 AM
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Woww... post up pics! What color? Are you in the Northeast? Very easy to title it in NH
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post #9 of 20 (permalink) Old 08-20-2018, 01:04 PM Thread Starter
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I am am in the northeast. I am in New York. How is it done in New Hampshire?
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post #10 of 20 (permalink) Old 08-20-2018, 09:45 PM
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crazy!

** save ~10 lbs gain 1 hp ** EQ: Y=(190*X) / (1984-X) where Y is (HP) and X is (lbs)

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post #11 of 20 (permalink) Old 08-21-2018, 05:19 AM
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If the shop has the original owners name that is a place to start

Lotus cars might be a place to start

If it was truly never titled maybe they can help with it
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post #12 of 20 (permalink) Old 08-21-2018, 05:22 AM
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It appears to be a federal car mph speedo and front bumper size so the shop probably has incorrect info
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post #13 of 20 (permalink) Old 08-21-2018, 05:15 PM
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Omg the odometer... I wouldve jumped on that new barn find haha

NH only needs a doc written by a cert inspector that verifies the VIN is real. Then the state takes that form and ascertains that it is not stolen, and you get registration plus plates issued.

Nh also only has titles for 2000 and newer..

I pay for titles on my classic cars in case I ever sell them.
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post #14 of 20 (permalink) Old 08-21-2018, 05:18 PM
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Did you get an amazing price ? What a gem! Is the interior beat ? Its needs major respray?
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post #15 of 20 (permalink) Old 08-22-2018, 06:18 AM
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Does anyone own an Elan in MA or NH? I am considering buying one, but would like to drive one or drive in one first. Most likely buy one sight unseen, but need to know whether this is a car I'd like or not.

Local dealer does not know of any or service any Elan's.

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post #16 of 20 (permalink) Old 08-22-2018, 08:18 AM
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moved

Last edited by exigegus; 08-22-2018 at 08:23 AM.
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post #17 of 20 (permalink) Old 08-24-2018, 05:29 AM
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x2nervisx - contact me for a title source
email "tedtaylorsr" at Gmail


also, is it possible the speedometer/odometer cable is broken?

TED
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post #18 of 20 (permalink) Old 08-24-2018, 06:22 AM
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It is possible, but at 91 miles?

It will not run properly with the speedo detached

it goes into a kind of limp home mode
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post #19 of 20 (permalink) Old 08-26-2018, 09:59 AM
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I provided new owner with a title source and wish him luck with the restoration. This is a perfect example that low mileage is not everything when it comes to how badly the car was stored, exposed to elements, and left sitting all those years. This car will need a complete top to bottom restore. it' truly sad that time and neglect have taken their toll. Glad someone is rescuing her.

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post #20 of 20 (permalink) Old 07-26-2019, 12:52 PM
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You will need multiple parts to replace the windshield. Contact John at lotusm100.com and get the story. Glass is scarce. Dave Bean Engineering in California has had some on order from the UK since last year, none have arrived (ask how I know...). Good luck!
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