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Discussion Starter #1
Can anyone help with a summary of major differences between the 2007, 08, 09, 10, and 11 Exige S? Is there an existing thread somewhere to read, or a guide somewhere? I'm new to this and actively searching for an Exige S...I've learned the 07 = 220HP, and 08 = 240HP, and 09,10 = 260HP, and 11 = "Final Edition" but I'd appreciate if anyone had a rundown of any other significant differences between the model years, advantages or disadvantages of each...reliability, handling...or can point me in the right direction to learn more.

Primary use of purchasing my Exige will be for weekend street driving through mountain roads here in the Western part of Northern VA...not racing. Maybe an occasional track day as I (hopefully) learn more. I drive my classic Mini about 1,000 miles each summer, and although it's so small that even 60MPH seems like break neck speed, I look forward to real speed/handling in an Exige.

Everyone on the forum has been great in my first month of membership, and I've already encountered many helpful people out there, so I appreciate any additional info.

Thanks! Dan
 

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Was just wondering where you are located? I saw you stated western part of northern Virginia. Are you close to Winchester? It would be nice to have another Lotus in the area.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Was just wondering where you are located? I saw you stated western part of northern Virginia. Are you close to Winchester? It would be nice to have another Lotus in the area.
Yep, not too far. We're in Haymarket...old part of town near the Sheetz. We head to Winchester and surrounding area about once a month for drives and/or to get our Forester xt, and 2.5RS serviced at Subaru of Winchester (great folks by the way).

Would be great to link up in the future and do some driving...hope to finally own a Lotus before summer.
 

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Here's my kick at the can ... though I'm sure I'll miss something :)

2007 - S220 (220HP), White Dash and center console, Smaller hood scoop

2008 - S240 (240HP), Black Dash and leather center console, Mohawk hood scoop, AP Racing Brake option

2009 - S240/S260, Add S260 with 260 HP

2010 - S240/260, Revised Front and Chin Spoiler and rear wing, Introduced Scura matte black model

2011 - Last year for Exige, added final edition

My advice would be to get a 2008+ as the black dash, leather interior, Mohawk roof and AP Racing brakes are worth the extra money ... other than that, they are all pretty much the same.

Cheers,
Zoomby_U
 

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+1 on the above. I went from a 05 elise to the 2008 Exige 240 with track and touring pack .. The track pack adds some awesome braking to a already good braking car and the adjustable track pack shocks are a piece of cake to adjust for weekend warriors that may occasionally hit up a track or autocross event and then put settings back to street mode easy... To note too the 2008 adds traction and launch control and limited slip diff options which are nice and my car has... Go with a 2008 plus if you can
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Great, Thanks for the info!! Another quick question....does the roof come off the 2008-2011s? I've seen lots of picks with the roof off of '07s, but haven't seen an 08+ with the roof off...but maybe it's just because I started seriously looking.
 

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My advice would be to get a 2008+ as the black dash, leather interior, Mohawk roof and AP Racing brakes are worth the extra money ... other than that, they are all pretty much the same.
Note that the author is not planning to do much if any track time. therefore they will never notice the AP brakes up front (other than the additional cost), the mohawk roof is more desirable from a sales perspective but is suspect as far as performance goes. That leaves the real differentiators - look of the later roof, 20 more hp, and better traction control. Prices have been a little weird lately, but I think its fair to say most of the time there is still a 10k spread between an 07 and an 08.

If you're driving around on mountain roads... they are pretty much all the same car. OP hasn't given enough info to really make a recommendation (aka budget)
 

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Great, Thanks for the info!! Another quick question....does the roof come off the 2008-2011s? I've seen lots of picks with the roof off of '07s, but haven't seen an 08+ with the roof off...but maybe it's just because I started seriously looking.
Yes, the roofs come off. About $500 to buy a used soft top/rails, $20 or so worth of grommets, and an hour of your time will complete adding the soft top option.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Trying to stay under $53k but plan to keep it for a while as becoming a Lotus owner has been a goal for many years....so would go higher for the "right" one....which is why I'm trying to get educated before I buy. Thanks.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Yes, the roofs come off. About $500 to buy a used soft top/rails, $20 or so worth of grommets, and an hour of your time will complete adding the soft top option.
Great, thanks. I appreciate it!
 

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Trying to stay under $53k but plan to keep it for a while as becoming a Lotus owner has been a goal for many years....so would go higher for the "right" one....which is why I'm trying to get educated before I buy. Thanks.
If you're planning to actually drive it you'd want to consider keeping on the lower end of pricing, ie 07 or 08. As far as many buyers are concerned 20,000 miles seems to qualify as a lot on a lotus. If you've got enough cash not to care then with stated purpose I don't think you're going to notice much tangible difference between any of them.
 

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Given what you said about not much tracking I would even consider a 2006 and save even more. But be warned, if you ever test drive one with more power you will then "need" the extra power! Coming out of corners on the Nürburgring and then getting my doors blasted off by GT-R's, etc. is annoying but I'm pretty sure that would still be happening if I had the Blade 300. (2006 S 220 UK spec here). This car is about handling and even the lower power ones bring just as much of that adrenaline rush as long as you have the balls to push it onto the higher cam profile in a corner. In fact, I think that was much more exciting on the one N/A one I drove before 'accidentally' test driving a 220 :)
 

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My understanding is the differences between 220 hp, 240 hp, 260 hp is tuning. A blade 275/300 package can be added to any year car. Given that, the differences between years are only somewhat meaningful in stock form. Any of them can be easily modified to where the differences would be minor since the chassis & body are the same.
 

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Discussion Starter #14
Given what you said about not much tracking I would even consider a 2006 and save even more. But be warned, if you ever test drive one with more power you will then "need" the extra power! Coming out of corners on the Nürburgring and then getting my doors blasted off by GT-R's, etc. is annoying but I'm pretty sure that would still be happening if I had the Blade 300. (2006 S 220 UK spec here). This car is about handling and even the lower power ones bring just as much of that adrenaline rush as long as you have the balls to push it onto the higher cam profile in a corner. In fact, I think that was much more exciting on the one N/A one I drove before 'accidentally' test driving a 220 :)
Thanks...and that's one of my "concerns"...I will definitely want the extra power because even though I'm not that educated with the differences right now, as I experience them I think it will become a "must have." It's happened every time in the past...NA Impreza, then moved to WRX, NA Forester...now XT, 1.0L Mini, now 1275 Cooper (and had supercharged 07 for a while), etc...even took my 73 VW Thing from stock 1600cc to 1776 with dual carb before I sold it.

I completely understand I'm stepping into a whole new class of car than I've ever had, so figure this time will start off with the extra power instead of "re-learning" and making the same mistake again.

If you're planning to actually drive it you'd want to consider keeping on the lower end of pricing, ie 07 or 08. As far as many buyers are concerned 20,000 miles seems to qualify as a lot on a lotus. If you've got enough cash not to care then with stated purpose I don't think you're going to notice much tangible difference between any of them.
I do plan to drive it, as often as possible (without it becoming a DD). Don't have unlimited cash, but willing to spend enough to start off right with the flexibility to expand into other options (maybe tracking regularly?)...sounds like there are infinite possibilities...especially considering all the cars I've seen and read about on LT so far.

My understanding is the differences between 220 hp, 240 hp, 260 hp is tuning. A blade 275/300 package can be added to any year car. Given that, the differences between years are only somewhat meaningful in stock form. Any of them can be easily modified to where the differences would be minor since the chassis & body are the same.
Does adding a blade 275/300 package effect reliability/long term life compared to how...say an S240 came from the factory in Hethel?

Thanks!
 

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I'll add my experiences. I was originally looking in the low-mid $40k range for a 2007 Exige S. For fun, I test drove the 2008 S240 and my budget immediately went out the window...and I got the S240. There was about a $10k price difference, but I felt the benefits outweighed the $10k I was paying.

The difference was massive when driven back-to-back. The S240 has AP Racing brakes which are insane, the car stops with feather-light brake pressure. The 20hp is a noticeable difference in terms of low end torque. But as others mentioned, you can add a blade 300 system and achieve much more power. I also preferred the more "refined" interior - black gauge dash, leather center console, cup holder, etc. The full mohawk roof looks way more aggressive. Given the small number of S240's on the road, I felt resale value would also hold fairly well down the road.

Overall, I don't think you can go wrong either way between an 07 and 08. But personally, I'd spend more for an S240.

EDIT: As for blade 300 reliability, I haven't heard of any issues? I'd search the forum.

Graham
 

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Discussion Starter #16
I'll add my experiences. I was originally looking in the low-mid $40k range for a 2007 Exige S. For fun, I test drove the 2008 S240 and my budget immediately went out the window...and I got the S240. There was about a $10k price difference, but I felt the benefits outweighed the $10k I was paying.

The difference was massive when driven back-to-back. The S240 has AP Racing brakes which are insane, the car stops with feather-light brake pressure. The 20hp is a noticeable difference in terms of low end torque. But as others mentioned, you can add a blade 300 system and achieve much more power. I also preferred the more "refined" interior - black gauge dash, leather center console, cup holder, etc. The full mohawk roof looks way more aggressive. Given the small number of S240's on the road, I felt resale value would also hold fairly well down the road.

Overall, I don't think you can go wrong either way between an 07 and 08. But personally, I'd spend more for an S240.

EDIT: As for blade 300 reliability, I haven't heard of any issues? I'd search the forum.

Graham
Thanks Graham! Sounds like an S240 is a good blend of what I'm looking for. I learned some good info from this and I appreciate all the advice and technical differences everyone weighed in with.

If anyone else has more info/differences between the 07-11s or has other advice to pass on I appreciate it. This has been very helpful.
 

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The difference was massive when driven back-to-back. The S240 has AP Racing brakes which are insane, the car stops with feather-light brake pressure. The 20hp is a noticeable difference in terms of low end torque. But as others mentioned, you can add a blade 300 system and achieve much more power. I also preferred the more "refined" interior - black gauge dash, leather center console, cup holder, etc. The full mohawk roof looks way more aggressive. Given the small number of S240's on the road, I felt resale value would also hold fairly well down the road.

Overall, I don't think you can go wrong either way between an 07 and 08. But personally, I'd spend more for an S240.

EDIT: As for blade 300 reliability, I haven't heard of any issues? I'd search the forum.

Graham
What actually stops a car is the amount of tire up front. Granted you're just relaying your experience, i'm saying that if one car stopped better than the other the reason is *not* the AP brakes- it might be the brake fluid, the pads, the type of tires on the car. Agree with you on other points though, differences in 08 definitely help resale, buyer just needs to decide if its worth it.


As far as reliability goes, you put 300hp through one of these and i'd advise you to be careful. The transmission is out of a car that topped out at 140hp. You can put double the HP through it but I guarantee you are shortening the life of that transmission. Lotus may have bumped the power up over the years but they also put on bandaids to keep the transmission going, ie the clutch proportioning valve on the 08+ cars. I don't think they did that on accident, I think they did it to keep the warranty claims on transmissions down to a minimum.

There are quite a few little differences between all the cars... 08+ has bigger injectors, better canbus for data if you're logging, more robust catalytic converter, etc and s260's have awesome hans seats, accusump, loads of CF. Think 09+ has better fuel tank. I think they only real negative I've seen is that cars with the soft touch interiors experience quite a bit of premature wear.
 
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