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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I've been on the forums for some months now, mostly on LEF watching, asking, being a pest and learning a LOT. After lots of maybe's and near misses, I finally nailed down a white S1 Esprit. It's in an experienced Lotus mechanics hands getting everything, well pretty much everything the front end can have replaced, bushings, tie rod ends, ball joints, rotors and pads and a set of Spax shocks as well. I got 1 day with the car in Florida and now I get to anticipate delivery after a laundry list of work gets accomplished. I won't admit how many years I've been lusting for an Esprit but the wait is finally over.

To continue in the true fashion of a pest, I am in a bit of a quandry about what I've seen S1 horsepower reported to be. I have seen that the US version supposedly only had 140bhp yet I have heard others say they had 160. What features caused the two different ratings? Carbs/Cat? I have seen that some may have had strombergs but mine has 2X2bbl Delortos. The cat can't cost the car 20bhp surely......anyone here with some info on this?

It's not had any detailing in a very long time and it needs a tidying up but it still looks pretty good to me.






-17
 

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It's probably the emission controls. I can tell you that the difference between a US spec Europa TC with smog Strombergs, and a Euro spec Europa with Dellortos is substantial. I believe valve timing was altered as well.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
I personally don't think a twin Dellorto equipped Esprit is 140bhp regardless of it being a US car. I'm inclined to believe closer to the 160bhp figure considering mine doesn't have the smog equipment I've seen in factory pics either.
 

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Based on road test data from back in the day, it appears that the factory was fairly optimistic on the quoted engine horsepower figures.

The carbs, distributor and cam timing are different on the US cars from the ROW (Rest Of World) cars. You can make a significant difference in the performance of your 2.0L engine by changing the cam pulleys.

I have the Dellortos, 107 cams, high compression forged pistons, ported head, re-curved distributor, green dot HTD cam pulleys, fully balanced rotating assembly and a lightened flywheel in my S1. It dynos out at ~175Hp.

I bought my S1 in pieces with a blown engine and gearbox so I never had an opportunity to drive it stock. Hence I can't report on the original performance.

While it doesn't have any where near the torque of my 2.2L cars, I still find it very enjoyable to drive. And it loves to rev. The only downside is that the lack of torque means that it must be kept up in the rev band to move quickly.

I hope that you enjoy yours as much as I do mine.

BTW: What color interior do you have? Is yours the Tartan upholstery?

Mine is a mint green full leather.

Regards,
Ron
'77 S1
'84 Turbo (x2)
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Someone went dark grey/black on the interior. It did of course have the tartan originally and I can see it would be quite difficult to reupholster in the original. I have pics but they are not good and I'd prefer to get the car home and detailed.

How about a pic of the mint green one then?
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Finally have a ship date. Anticipation had been mounting but once a date is known it focus's it. Repairs are nearly complete and it gets picked up on May 11th. Getting pretty jazzed.....
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Bought it a month ago, arrived via transporter saturday night. Rode from Florida with some fast company, 3 cars from the Gumball 3000, F430, Maserati, Porsche 911 and a private SL55.









Now for the to do list......it's long.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Wheel polishing is still in progress, got two stripped of the flat clear coat and polished last night but still have the rears to do next week. It 'is' cleaner and the 13 hours spent on the light pods shows, hopefully.....The Cibie CSR's are gorgeous and about 300% better than the sylvania junk I removed and tossed. I'm pretty pleased with how the pods close as well, not perfect but bloody close...











 

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From what one owner told me - The engines (and their specs) varied year to year. Almost no 2 years were the same.
Still it is a nice example, and HP does not always equate to happiness.
 

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I won't admit how many years I've been lusting for an Esprit but the wait is finally over.
If I may venture a guess...seeing the car in the 1977 Bond movie, The Spy Who Loved Me, sealed your fate? Did you also fall in love with Barbara Bach? :drool:

Congratulations on the car!!!
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Before The Spy Who Loved Me, I was a Europa fan before the Esprit existed. But when the news about the Esprit got out, it was indeed the fresh new younger shape that I fell for. I still really like twincam Europas but knew I just had to have an Esprit.

I always liked the bad girl from The Spy Who Loved Me, Caroline Munro better.....Barbara was ok as well.
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
Nasty old clear coat removed from the wheels and about 4 hours or so of hand polishing......

Before:



After:

 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
Again, many more hours spent, changed out the taillamps for a later amber set, installed the front lenses, swapped out the hatch lifts and did about 9 hours on the engine.







 

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Blimey, keep polishing! As stated it keeps looking better and better, mine is only 5 years old and your paintwork looks better!!
 

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The S1 looks great! Keep us informed of the progress! I have never driven a pre-89 Esprit but I would love to just for kicks (although I dont think I could part with my 99 Esprit V8).

cheers, Matt
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
Hasn't been making a lot of progress. 2 steps forward, one back. Spent three long days at the back doing u-joints, brakes and shocks only to find out the Master cyl/booster had packed it in. Just pulled that out tonight and boxed it up to send to a rebuilder back east. So there's another item to add to the list for this car that's hard to find......

Before the teardown:



The old stuff, I figured with the crushed insulators, the ride height was down by about an inch. I meant to do all 4 u-joints, however I couldn't get the 'good' side's axle off so I'll hire that job out eventually. My 3/4 drive 3' long F-111 breaker bar would not budge that nut.....thankfully the side with the bad u-joint cooperated and I was able to get that one. Spent about 34 hours over 3 days doing that lot, I won't be diving into a job like that again anytime soon.



The new stuff:





Just for grins and giggles, both shots are old pics but not too bad:



 
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