Reasons to purchase a 2005 Elise? - Page 2 - LotusTalk - The Lotus Cars Community
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post #21 of 46 (permalink) Old 02-28-2016, 05:00 PM
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I got my Elise while I was still in school, but 1) I had a Honda beater and 2) did not live at home. An Elise is just not a good car to drive to school for a variety of reasons (attention, practicality, vandalism). Heck, an Elise is a terrible only car too. Plus moving out from under your parents' roof and being able to pay for other basic things (going out to eat, taking a vacation, etc.) should take higher priority.

Why don't you wait another 6-12 months? Sounds like school is almost over for you. Or even better, wait until you are able to have a daily beater.

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post #22 of 46 (permalink) Old 02-28-2016, 10:33 PM
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What are your thoughts and plans in the near future, once you move out? I don't think its an exaggeration to say you need a garage to keep it in, think: weather, vandalism, water leaks, inconsiderate a**holes in parking lots, etc. If there's even the possibility of having to settle with a normal apartment with a parking lot at some point, I wouldn't do it.

Driving these cars every day would be a huge pain, sure there's some brave souls here that may say otherwise, but consider the leaking roof, loud interior, CONSTANT ATTENTION, drivers that don't see you in their blind spots, having to avoid steep parking lots, construction, etc, using it as your only car would get old quick, and take any sense of occasion and enjoyment out of driving the car real quick.

The biggest issue of having to daily drive, risking the car every day with how fragile the body work is. Someone bumps into you in the parking lot with the FRS, you have some light body work to take care of, in the Lotus it would likely be totaled.

Besides for the depreciation, the FRS seems perfect for your situation. I'd suggest though, as boring as it sounds, get a career going, find a house, then buy the occasional use fun cars. In the mean time, perhaps sell the FRS, and buy something at the bottom of its value thats still fun, miata, s2000, Z, M3, etc.

Having said all this, given your situation, 21 year old me would have bought the lotus

PS, I bought my Elise when I was 23, if you look young, get ready for CONSTANT snide comments from unknowing strangers relating to their assumptions of why you're driving a Lotus.

Originally Posted by Verichai View Post
Plus, I know you want to drive an Elise partially beause of how it looks, but believe me, the attention gets old. Especially if you're an introvert who does not like being the center of attention everywhere you go.

So much this.

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post #23 of 46 (permalink) Old 02-29-2016, 04:03 AM
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^ When I lived in an apt complex, a neighbor asked if someone died and left a bunch of money to me (I'm 27 but still always get carded)

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post #24 of 46 (permalink) Old 02-29-2016, 05:38 AM
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It's hard to think of a worse vehicle for someone without access to a garage for storage, the means and ability to maintain it properly, and especially for use as an only car. It also seems that college cars are exposed to more potential abuse from others as it's so hard to control a lot of security variables. These things are fun to be sure, but they're also fragile and impractical.

My advice FWIW: Graduate. Get a good job. Get a solid DD. Find a place with a garage. Then buy a Lotus with a plan to pay it off.

My son did all of that and had his Exige payed off in 4 years. It can be done.

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post #25 of 46 (permalink) Old 02-29-2016, 05:58 AM
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^^^I agree. My car at the time got trashed during college. Parked outside in a giant lot near the dorms. Sun, wind, rain, snow, door dings, etc.

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post #26 of 46 (permalink) Old 02-29-2016, 05:44 PM
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I think most of us prefer not to see a Lotus being treated like an "ordinary" car, but on the flip side it's hard to argue against them not to be used in such a manner. - as aside from being low on practicality (space, comfort,2 person seating), it's really no different than any other $35k sports car.
I went from a Celica hatchback to a MGB in college (and still have the MGB), - tho I could still put my surfboards in it!

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post #27 of 46 (permalink) Old 03-01-2016, 08:32 AM
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I'm not even going to touch the whole dependence thing, but I will say that assuming you purchased your Scion, and you'll be purchasing the Lotus, that's a lot of tax dollars. While the value may be about the same, you're looking at least a few grand in ADDITIONAL taxes to buy the Elise that you could instead be putting toward your current car and alleviate part of the burden you're putting on your folks while you're in school. Don't count on cheaper maintenance, either. And yes, Lotus values at the very least are stable now, but there's no guarantee that will be the case even a year from now - just look at what prices on brand new Lotus did during the financial crisis.
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post #28 of 46 (permalink) Old 03-01-2016, 08:38 AM
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Originally Posted by Axent View Post
so i'm 21.
can anyone help make a fairly elaborate argument as to why an Elise would be more beneficial than per se my FRS

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post #29 of 46 (permalink) Old 03-01-2016, 08:58 AM
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Terrible idea, I can't imagine trading my daily-driver BRZ for a daily-driver Elise. This is 21-year-old thinking. The FR-S has just gone through the worst part of its depreciation, selling it now for ANYthing is a horrible idea financially. If you weren't sure if you wanted it, it'd have been a lot better to pick up an older BRZ or FR-S that had already depreciated a bit. You're stuck with your FR-S unless you feel like flushing thousands of dollars in depreciation on your whims.

Pick up a real cheap second car if you want something exotic-ish. I had a 914 back in my '20s as my sports car; not beautiful and certainly no Elise but fun, cheap, open-top, and amazingly practical. Miata or S2000 would be better if you just care about having a convertible.
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post #30 of 46 (permalink) Old 03-01-2016, 10:50 AM
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Originally Posted by dallasreed View Post
Yolo on a Lotus, you may live twice in the FRS.

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post #31 of 46 (permalink) Old 03-02-2016, 06:14 AM
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Not that its the best idea, but I bought an Elise when I was 21 and I turned out all right.. LOL

2005 Lotus Elise turbo k20a2 757whp 536wtq 31psi [email protected]
2005 Lotus Elise 2zz supercharged 'streetable' race car
2007 Lamborghini Gallardo Spyder
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2004 Mazda RX8
2007 Mazda Mazdaspeed 3
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I passed my license test in a 3cyl 70hp Geo Metro
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post #32 of 46 (permalink) Old 03-02-2016, 06:57 AM
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Keep what you have. Put some suspension in it if you like.

If you had no car, i would suggest you get a good used Miata with a hardtop.

Elise is for later.

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post #33 of 46 (permalink) Old 03-02-2016, 11:26 AM
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As a younger guy who wanted an Elise since I started college here is my opinion

How long have you driven a manual sports car? If you are an experienced driver with a great record, an Elise could be an amazing fun car to own.

Things I would highly consider near necessities for ownership

Affordability: you already mentioned your parents are footing the bill. Even though I had to wait until I could afford my own payments, insurance, etc... If my parents were footing the bill, both willing and able, I would have jumped at the chance

Maintenance: Are you able to service the car or have access to a reputable service center in case of breakdowns? a second bullet point to this would be to keep this car in a garage, as well as having backup vehicles if/when the Elise is in need of said service.

Road/Parking conditions: How are the roads and places where you will have this parked? Street parking is a nightmare as well as if the places you will be parking tend to have a lot of door dings, etc... as well as how are the roads in regards to potholes, speedbumps, and snow?

Driving Experience: How much experience do you have in regards to driving manual sports cars? The elise has rear bias tendencies with snap oversteer and such, Prior mid-engine cars driving experience is helpful, but not required, but really learning or having learned a lot of sports car experiences through autocross or HPDE will help hugely to keep your car on the road and not in the salvage yard.

That being said, it will be very difficult to justify an Elise over an FRS

The Lotus Elise will hold its value better than an FRS as far as depreciation goes
Tires 100$ for Continental Extremecontact DWS is my recommendation
I haven't replaced the clutch yet
Oil can be done yourself with a low profile jack and ramps, maybe a oil filter wrench, a wratchet with 8mm socket and 14mm and the tool pouch that comes with the car, on average it takes me 1-1.5 hours. The cost of Oil changes arent much more than any other car.
Brakes pads I use Porterfield R4-S which are under 200 Car is light and I've replaced them once in 25k miles (with
Potentially stock drilled rotors can be sourced from rockauto for 66$
Insurance is not cheap, but good luck finding it if its under your own and not your parents. I had a hell of a time because I was under 25 when I bought my Elise
Premium fuel is required and I average 27 MPG

You're welcome

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post #34 of 46 (permalink) Old 03-02-2016, 02:49 PM
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Boy kids sure know how to squeeze their parents better than I did. My advice is to unhitch yourself from your parents teet and then do whatever you'd like!

"Give a man a match, and he'll be warm for a minute, but set him on fire, and he'll be warm for the rest of his life."
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post #35 of 46 (permalink) Old 03-03-2016, 05:08 AM
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I got my first sports car at 18, had my first Lotus (elan) at 23, best decision ever...go for it!
Also used my Elise as a daily driver for years before I had to get a station car for my commute to NYC.

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post #36 of 46 (permalink) Old 03-03-2016, 07:45 AM
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Originally Posted by Spartacus View Post
Get out of debt and pay things in cash.
This, while not popular or fun, is the best advise you are going the get. I would suggest listening to a few Dave Ramsey podcasts for motivation.
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post #37 of 46 (permalink) Old 03-03-2016, 08:12 AM
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As long as your parents are paying the bills, keep the FRS/BRZ. Once you are financially stable on your own, buy your own toys. I agree with the above, save up and pay cash for everything (except for a house).

With that said, I had a 20+ year old Lotus Europa when I was in collage, but I also had a Pathfinder and trailer to haul it to autocross and track days.
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post #38 of 46 (permalink) Old 03-03-2016, 10:04 AM
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Your current car is a great car to have while in college. Many students will dream of owning that (Iím for one). Since you are still living with your parents and they are paying for your tuition, I would say focus on your education. When you finished and have a career, you can get any cars you like.

Also, I want to say that you are very fortunate. While I was in college, I have to work full-time and even over-time to help my parents pay for the mortgage, bills, and food for a family of 6. We are immigrants and my parents never had stable jobs even with very low wages. Every month, I gave most of my salary to my parents. I only needed the minimum to pay for tuition, gas, and lunch money. I had a high mileage 1985 Corolla GTS in college. Now that my career has pickup, I can buy almost any car I like but I choose the Evora S because I think it has the best value. I love the Elise, but I would never buy one at these current high prices. You need to spend your money wisely even if you have money to spare.

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post #39 of 46 (permalink) Old 03-03-2016, 11:16 AM
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Wow I wrote a whole thing about this but realized zero summed it up quite nicely...

I'd add in that trunk space might be a problem for some as well as getting in and out but everyone knows that. Sometimes when I go to pick up food from a restaurant, I'm tempted to ask them to come out and throw the food at me so I don't have to get out. There really is no good logical argument you can make for owning one. They're incredibly stupid cars. If you're trying to ask for an elaborate argument to own one over an FRS outside of the fun factor, then you're not going to get many good answers. Doing so is an exercise in futility. You might as well ask for arguments for owning a fleshlight over a paint brush for redecorating your house.

Last edited by Supernaut; 03-03-2016 at 11:37 AM.
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post #40 of 46 (permalink) Old 03-03-2016, 11:34 AM
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Current high prices for the Elise? You can get a good one for $30k.
Seems cheap to me considering what a fantastic car it is.

Having said that, I agree with most of the above - it's not the car for a 21 year old in college, especially one who already has a decent (and much more practical) sports car.

05 Elise, ST, sports, touring, hardtop, DBA 4000 slotted discs, Ferodo DS2500 pads, Sector 111 gpan3, EP Tuning Quickrack, Pro Alloy rad, DS brace, HnT pad, front and rear tow hooks, CG lock, ORE double cup holder (caffeine for track); '86 911 Targa (sold); '68 MGB (being restored)
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