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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
Back on the market (previous thread was closed)

2003 Euro Lotus Elise - Honda Powered.

CA Smog exempt = unlimited potential

Update: Elise is still for sale. Available to show all weekend.

I am the third owner. This car started life as a 2003 Rover K-Series S2 Elise in England. This is probably the lightest configuration of a street-going Elise available: no AC, no ABS, no power windows or locks, no airbags = 1750 pounds. First owner/builder had the car imported to California in 2004 as a rolling chassis with no engine or trans. Using a using a Sun speed International kit, it was fitted with a 1998 JDM Acura Integra Type-R B18C and Type-R close ratio 5-speed helical LSD transmission. Once sorted and registered, the car was then sold to the second owner who daily drove it for 6+ years (hence, the higher mileage). I purchased the Elise last year and replaced the transmission, clutch, flywheel, exhaust and brakes with brand NEW units from Acura, ACT, Exedy, Larini & StopTech. I replaced the stock computer with a Honda P28 computer mated to a completely tuneable Hondata S300 ecu. After adding the Larini exhaust, the car was tuned on Blacktrax Performance's Dynapac chassis dyno. (Blacktrax is one of the best Honda tuners in the Bay Area).
Because the chassis and engine were joined after importing in 2004, the car is considered a Special Construction Vehicle (SPCNS) which means it is legally street registered in California and never needs to be smogged. Ever. Yes, it is street legal forever no matter what powerplant or mods you throw at it. As we all know, Honda engines/transmissions are very well developed and have a ton more aftermarket support than the U.S. Toyota unit. So as you can imagine, the potential of this car is almost unlimited. (turbo B18, K20, K24, ?).
As it sits, the car runs and handles great. It rips to redline with the unmistakeable Honda VTEC howl. Never tracked under my ownership with the exception of one GG Lotus Club Autox last fall.
It could easily be a great and reliable daily driver as-is or become the platform for the most wild street legal track monster your heart desires.

She's a driver and mechanically sound but does have the scars and imperfections of 9 years of use. There are a few cosmetic issues: a hairline 4 inch clam crack in the rear, minor chips and few rock scars. The stock Elise digital temp gauge does not interface with the Honda computer so I have an analog VDO water temp gauge mounted below the dash. The engine is healthy and pulls strong but does burn a hint of oil at WOT-- nothing major). Other than that, she runs and turns like a champ.

So if you are looking for a pristine low mileage creampuff with all the amenities to cruise the boulevard, this car is NOT for you. This machine is lightweight, raw and pure, as God and Colin Chapman intended.

With the Euro spec design, longtail soft top, Euro 6-spoke wheels and Acura power, this is arguably one of the most unique S2 Elises in the country.

I will be able to show it on weekends mostly.

$25k OBO

Located in SF Bay Area.

Here are 2 videos:

A full walk around: elisewalk.mov - YouTube

A short driving one:
 

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Discussion Starter #2
After experiencing a few tire kickers this past weekend I think we should converse before any potential buyer makes the trip to see it. I would ask you to think about what you are truly looking for and if this car meets your needs.

If you are just looking for a cheap Elise I think you should hold out for a low mileage US spec car to come along. They do show up often enough here to warrant patience although prices seem to be creeping into the low $30's now.

On the other hand, if you appreciate the incredible and rare upside of having a SPCNS VIN Elise that you could throw any engine into and be smog exempt and street legal then we should talk. The Honda B18C is basically the small block chevy of the import world. The aftermarket for it is huge. That feature is what makes this car particularly special. Some of the folks I saw last week were never going to take advantage of that upside. They just tried to lowball me because the car is a few years older and has higher mileage than most US spec Elises out there.

Sorry for the rant, but I don't want to waste your time or mine. :D
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Car has 158k kilometers on the odometer which is about 98k miles and going strong.

There are 2 ways to look at that:

1) wow that's a lot of miles.

2) wow, 98k miles...That honda conversion sure does work.

:)
 

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Discussion Starter #7
For those who have asked, here's the DMV file confirming the smog exmpt status. As far as I can tell, it is impossible to get this exemption in California anymore.

w00t
 

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