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I posted this because I think its the most overstated incorrect statement that I see over and over here when responding to an inquiring mind on here. Too many people says that if you test drove it and didn't buy it then its not for you. You have to remember that most people can't "drive". So if your on a test drive doing the speed limit and turning normal corners then your not getting anything out of it. From reading comments on here one would speculate that your suppose to have an orgasm from just pulling out a parking lot. I came from all front engine cars and on my Lotus test drive I did absolutely nothing "Lotus-Like". A dealer isn't gonna just hand over the keys and tell you to start bending corners. I don't know, maybe the dealers do the driving themselves. The only real experience most will get is the second cam switchover. I bought the car based off of a combination of how it looks and what I knew it was capable of (but I did know all the "downsides" to the car before I bought it). But it took me months (without classes) before I got enough of a feel for it to where I started really taking turns and getting this experience. I know a lot of people on here were good drivers and track drivers prior to the Lotus purchase but this board isn't the majority. Just some thoughts for the new people.
 

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A dealer isn't gonna just hand over the keys and tell you to start bending corners.

Really?

not my experience,

ive always found with these sorts of cars, the Dealer takes me out, shows me what it can do, and then hands over the keys.

every lotus ive driven with the dealer has most definately received a proper "lotus" drive with the consent of the dealer.
 

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I have had some people test drive my car and decide they did not want a Lotus. Too harsh. Too rattly. Too low. Too loud. Too something....
 

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I think the general sentiment behind that advice is that even a basic test drive will show you the "down sides" of life with an Elise/Exige, and that if you're still interested then you can look forward to the upsides. It appears that you are relatively young/light/small so the ingress/egress and rawness of the car didn't hit you as much as it might others.
 

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Really?

not my experience,

ive always found with these sorts of cars, the Dealer takes me out, shows me what it can do, and then hands over the keys.

every lotus ive driven with the dealer has most definately received a proper "lotus" drive with the consent of the dealer.
The guy who took me for a test drive was heel-toe downshifting in cowboy boots on an interstate turnaround. I knew I wanted it before I even got in the drivers seat.
 

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I posted this because I think its the most overstated incorrect statement that I see over and over here when responding to an inquiring mind on here. Too many people says that if you test drove it and didn't buy it then its not for you. You have to remember that most people can't "drive". So if your on a test drive doing the speed limit and turning normal corners then your not getting anything out of it. From reading comments on here one would speculate that your suppose to have an orgasm from just pulling out a parking lot. I came from all front engine cars and on my Lotus test drive I did absolutely nothing "Lotus-Like". A dealer isn't gonna just hand over the keys and tell you to start bending corners. I don't know, maybe the dealers do the driving themselves. The only real experience most will get is the second cam switchover. I bought the car based off of a combination of how it looks and what I knew it was capable of (but I did know all the "downsides" to the car before I bought it). But it took me months (without classes) before I got enough of a feel for it to where I started really taking turns and getting this experience. I know a lot of people on here were good drivers and track drivers prior to the Lotus purchase but this board isn't the majority. Just some thoughts for the new people.

I tend to disagree...this is from my own personal experience...

I had admired the car from afar...although I was not in a situation to purchase at the time (2007, wife was due 2 months later).

Just from sitting in the car for the first time, listening to the engine sing and trying to make sense of a completely different driving perspective - from height off the ground to the size of the steering wheel - I was COMPELLED.

Then I drove it...in traffic...didn't go over 65mph...and when I did hit 65 the sales rep said to me "you know there's a 6th gear, right?" I was shaking...no joke...I was so overwhelmed by the driving experience...

I couldn't stop looking at the car after we got out. It wasn't the color I wanted, the price was too rich for me, and the family situation wasn't right...but it was the MACHINE I wanted. Badly.

I waited 2 more years...there wasn't another single car I even thought of...not a Boxster, not an S2000, or dare I say a Miata...this was the car...and there was no doubt about it after my first test drive.

(disclaimer: your experience may vary, consult your physician if you too suffer from a 4 hour erection after test driving).
 

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You get a similar feeling you get on a motorbike. I am the worst bike rider alive, (actually my friend is: He crashed it 3 times in 3 attempts to actually get the thing moving), but anyways, I ride bikes and have a hell of a time even though my riding skills are crap. I think a Lotus is similar in thrill factor.


NOW if you don't like thrill or you interpret that "thrill" as "fear", then you won't like a Lotus, and you won't like a bike.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
The guy who took me for a test drive was heel-toe downshifting in cowboy boots on an interstate turnaround. I knew I wanted it before I even got in the drivers seat.
rotfl I needed to have that experience. Ill agree to that but if it was always solely on the new guy then I assume there would be a lot of lift off throttle snap oversteer going on during test drives. Maybe just being in it is more of an experience than I think it is if I consider the fact that most "new" passengers always think Im speeding when Im not. Now that I can "drive" this thing I need an in car camera pointed at passengers faces lol.
 

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I test drove it on a snowy day in December-not the optimum weather for an Elise test-drive. I even offered to come back when the weather was nicer. "Nope," said the dealer, "You'll be fine." I puttered around a bit while we watched the engine temp warm up and I absorbed his detailed knowledge of the car. Finally, we came upon a long, dry strech of winding road with not a car in sight and 186 reading on the temp gauge. He looked at me and said with a smile "If you're ever gonna do it, now's the time." I hit the second cam, whipped through a couple of corners and was hooked for life.

If I'd puttered around a city street, I think I still would have been hooked, though...

"Jeez, this thing is like a drug!" I said when we got back. He answered "Why do you think they call me a dealer?"

Tom
 

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I rented one for a weekend before buying one. I could tell from the moment I drove out onto the street that the car was special. My biggest epiphany came not on twisties ( I did not find many in urban San Diego) but when I got on a long straight smooth section of freeway. It was simply amazing how I could feel the road yawing, dipping, every crack and hump was transfered to my fingertips bringing back my days as a bicycle road racer in criterium races. The tactile feedback and handling are the main reasons I bought the car ( and the fact that it was Toyota powered and was very fast yet got great milage). Also the fact that it was essentially a track ready car out of the box was appealing. I started lurking more here researching the very day I got back into town, and almost every night I had dreams of driving the car. I bought one about 4 months later..... buying this car on looks alone sounds like a recipe for a quick turnaround.
 

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I love taking clients out on test drives. We have some great roads around here for "spirited" driving. I like to drive first, I push the car as far to its limits as possible, while maintaining a level of saftey on public roads, then I throw the guy in the drivers seat after I've shown the cars capabilities. I figure one of 2 things have happend either I've scaried the [email protected]%t outta him or helped create the next Lotus owner. Either way we always come back with a smile on our faces!!
 

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I rented an Elise for one day while my Jeep was being serviced. I followed all the rules of the road - and knew it was for me. Got one about two years later and still follow all the rules of the road. ;)
 

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I posted this because I think its the most overstated incorrect statement that I see over and over here when responding to an inquiring mind on here. Too many people says that if you test drove it and didn't buy it then its not for you. You have to remember that most people can't "drive"...
I had not thought of it that way. I think you are on to something.

Dealers take note.
 

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I never test drove my Elise. I purchased my car over the phone, flew to L.A. to pick it up, and drove it 400 miles to my home in San Francisco. The first 30 minutes were fantastic, then the car was tiresome and downright annoying on some of the little things that you would expect of a car that was lacking - radio without reception, windows that rattled, mirrors that you need to adjust manually and can't reach, seat belt clip that came off in my hands ... HOWEVER, I truly appreciated and enjoyed the car the more I drove the car, as it is a unique driving experience like no other. To me it was a love, hate, love relationship. Hardly something you can appreciate in a 15 minute test drive.

vincesf
 

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Looks

I was basically sold on the looks both before and after the test drive.

The low-to-the-ground seating and the difficulty in getting in was also very cool...seems like the only passengers that will fit would be young single girls.

Oh ya, my wife fits quite easily too. (faint sound of a rolling pin smacking me in the head).
 

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I disagree. All the qualities, good and bad, are apparent at even 5 miles an hour. I knew I wanted one just by sitting in it.

I can tell how most any car drives by taking it around the block. No need to break the law to figure out if you like it. The steering response, road feel, and the way you sit in the car are quite obvious.
 

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I suppose a 'real driver' can get in the car, drive it a few hundred yards and know right away if the car is for him or her.

Someone who is new to sports cars and/or performance driving might have a tougher time understanding what an Elise/Exige is all about.

To me it was blatantly obvious that I would own one of these cars as soon as I pulled the demo car out of the dealership and got to the first stop light. It was everything that I loved about my Miatas turned up to 11 (or more like 21).
 

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First time I drove it was when the dealer handed me the keys after I bought it. Then I came here and posted to learn how to get in and out of it! LOL
 

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I never test drove my Elise. I purchased my car over the phone, flew to L.A. to pick it up, and drove it 400 miles to my home in San Francisco. The first 30 minutes were fantastic, then the car was tiresome and downright annoying on some of the little things that you would expect of a car that was lacking - radio without reception, windows that rattled, mirrors that you need to adjust manually and can't reach, seat belt clip that came off in my hands ... HOWEVER, I truly appreciated and enjoyed the car the more I drove the car, as it is a unique driving experience like no other. To me it was a love, hate, love relationship. Hardly something you can appreciate in a 15 minute test drive.

vincesf
My experience was similar. I worked the sale over the phone, then flew from Manhattan, Kansas out to Denver (470 miles). The salesman picked me up at the airport, I handed him a check, filled out sales paperwork and drove off. It was that easy. The trip back to Kansas was a blast.
 
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