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Elise/Exige or Evora?

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In the near future, I will be in the market for my 3rd Lotus. I have owned 2 Elises previously and will getting back into one hopefully some time soon. I'm torn in my decision between finding an Evora or Elise/Exige.

With both of my Elises, the top was usually only on if it was raining or extremely cold. I love the top down feeling and it would be awesome to be able to give my little girl that experience when she is a little older.

I do love the Evora as well, but would miss being able to take the top off. I really wish they made a targa version or something! After hearing @Plackslayer's exhaust on his Evora, I was in love with that sound!

Post your reasons as to why you chose one over the other and vote!
 

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Less is Better
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The two cars are so different. You're only mentioning the top, what else do you care about?
 

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Discussion Starter #4
If you have a small child the Evora is the way to go. They fit in the back seat!
This was my line of thinking too.

The two cars are so different. You're only mentioning the top, what else do you care about?
They are. I know either one will be fun, maybe it'll just come down to what is available at the time I'm ready to buy. When I had my elise I had always wanted to get an evora. I do love the simplicity of the elise though. I actually haven't driven an evora, I think maybe I need to do that before I make any decision.
 

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Very different animals. One is truly lightweight, but doesn't really have creature comforts (or a backseat, if you can call it that). It is raw and precise. The other is a thousand pounds more, and is actually more like a normal car. It is more refined, but less precise.

They're also very different with regards to price, unless you can settle for an older non-supercharged Evora. Personally, I've never driven a naturally aspirated Elige or Evora, and I doubt I would be satisfied.

I think you need to ask yourself how important a back seat is.

San
 

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If it helps at all. I have not driven an Elise, but have driven a 4C and an N/A Evora.

While I know the 4C is not quite there with the Elise in terms of "feel" and pure handling, I think it'd be safe to say it's about 90% of the way there.

The Evora was head and shoulders better to drive than the 4C, and I loved the 4C when I drove it. The Evora is just incredibly comfortable, its suspension makes you feel like you are defying physics, and you feel like you are in a "real" car. In the 4C I'd be incredibly worried about taking it to restaurants or navigating parking lots because of the blind spots and unassisted steering. The Evora takes all of that stress away and is a complete darling in normal mundane driving experiences.

If an Elise is a 10/10 in driving experience/engagement but like a 4/10 in terms of practicality then the Evora is a 9/10 in driving experience/engagement but a solid 7/10 in terms of practicality. You lose a bit of the experience, but you also gain a lot more for what you sacrificed.
 

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The Evora is just incredibly comfortable, its suspension makes you feel like you are defying physics, and you feel like you are in a "real" car.
I'll jump in with my main thought on the Elise vs Evora question, because I've thought about it a lot.

For me, and most other owner's, I assume, the Lotus is a second car, a Sunday canyon blaster or track day toy. So the fact that is less like a 'real' car is precisely what makes it so fun and interesting to drive. I absolutely love the Evora but I spend all week commuting in a real car. When I get the Elise out, I'm looking for something exponentially more pure.

Now, if I lived in SoCal or Phoenix and not in the snow belt, and I was only going to have one car, well, I'd have to think really hard about that, because I could definitely live with an Evora every day in that case.
 

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I had an Elise for 11 years and am just about to celebrate 6 with the Evora (and 4 years with them together). I sold the Elise as I wasn't using it - I was favoring the Evora. @eaglerulez summed it up nicely with his number scale. You lose a little (very little) on the driving side but gain a lot in the normal car side. The Evora feels more planted and solid on the road and less of a toy.

I sometimes miss the rawness of the Elise (but not enough to do it again), the noise of the stage 2, especially on the run to the red line and the big one was the removable roof. I didn't make my Evora noiser since it is more usable and more friendly on road trips so I didn't want the drone of a plax. Saying that an Evora with a loud exhaust would address the noise bit if I wanted, so the only bit you lose is the removavble roof.

After 18 months without a convertible I just did the unthinkable and bought a 987 Boxster in the spring (it was a spur of the moment purchase as it was the cheapest 08 manual in the country....). I have to say, it really is nice having a convertible again. The weird part is I never liked driving Boxsters back in the day..... Maybe I'm just getting older and prefer a bit more refinement. Anyways the Evora is better as a drivers car than the Porsche not that the Porsche is bad by any stretch, everything is just weighted perfectly in the Lotus, whereas the Porsche controls feel a bit heavy and it rides harder. Although the Porsche has a few nice items like hidden pockets everywhere inside it, which makes it more usable, you can get more stuff in an Evora and overall it is the better car.

I guess I'm saying from my experience that the Evora is better than an Elise unless you want the pure raw racecar feel and the convertible. If you can live without them (and for me those times were in the minority) the Evora is the winner.
 

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I had mulled getting back into motorsports for about two years and researched four or five cars before getting wound up on the Elise. Instead of nostalgia ruling in my selection I let the desire to have an experience that was new and raw. At my age I knew I wouldn't be having a turnover in cars so it would have to peak my interest for all future motorsport desires. We have unusual toys and the Elise definitely fit that to a T and it did bring back memories of driving an Elan when I was 15 for a summer. It wasn't to be a DD but more of a play car and occasional track car. After buy a fully modded car that I thought would be perfect I found myself embroiled in the addiction spending my SS checks readily on the car lol. Nothing but joy in my decision!
 
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I guess it depends on what you are looking for in the car. I believe the Elise/exige to be more of a special feeling (occasion) car. The evora is a great car especially the new GT but is more of a liveablencar while loosing just a little bit of the Elise magic.
 

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Discussion Starter #12
Very different animals.
Definitely true!


I'll jump in with my main thought on the Elise vs Evora question, because I've thought about it a lot.

For me, and most other owner's, I assume, the Lotus is a second car, a Sunday canyon blaster or track day toy. So the fact that is less like a 'real' car is precisely what makes it so fun and interesting to drive. I absolutely love the Evora but I spend all week commuting in a real car. When I get the Elise out, I'm looking for something exponentially more pure.

Now, if I lived in SoCal or Phoenix and not in the snow belt, and I was only going to have one car, well, I'd have to think really hard about that, because I could definitely live with an Evora every day in that case.
I DD'ed both my previous Elises even though they were "extra" cars. My normal daily driver sat in the garage way more than the Lotus did. Would probably be the same one regardless of which one I go with.

the big one was the removable roof.
If I go Evora, I will miss that a ton


All great points everyone!
 

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I had my Elise 9 years. Between my Evoras, it now 9 years on them. Loved my Elise. Softtop spring and fall. Hardtop in heat of summer and majority of track days. DD'd the Elise all 9 years. Same with Evora although it does share time with the other toys. If I could only have one...hands down it would be the Evora. It just does everything well and untouched, out of the box was a better HPDE car. Either variant is very satisfying be it NA or SC'd. Miata is the top down toy...cheap fun. 4C disappointed me recently as suspension/steering calibrations are sketchy ??Caster issues. The suspension and steering feel magic in the Evora makes it drives tighter but lighter than its weight. I have yet to be in any car short of a track prepped car have this same magical feel. IMHO, one of the greatest cars ever built. Elise is also amazing but for the obvious lightweight reason.
Hate to say it, but drive a ND Miata RF. Might push your buttons!
 
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@Doge I have a 2011 Elise R and a 2010 Evora N/A. As stated here a thousand times, the Elise is much more raw than the Evora. My neighbor recently asked me why I don't sell the Elise. He says that I rarely drive it but he sees me all the time heading out in the Evora. Some of that is because I wake the dead with the Plack on the Evora but he is still right. If someone said "this is your last drive" and put the Evora or the Elise keys in front of me I would pick the Evora hands down.

This is not to say that the Elise is bad, far from it, but it is a car without any consideration for comfort and all purpose set on a connected driving experience, even if your spleen is about to rupture. Like @eaglerulez I think that the Evora gives nearly the experience of the Elise with the comfort approaching a GT car when you just want to cruise. My wife loves driving the Evora but won't touch the Elise; she won't even look at the Europa. Does this mean that I am going to sell the Elise like my neighbor suggests? Hell no. It is a fantastic car in its own right but much more of an occasion car that I need to be in the mood for.
 
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I’ve only ever ridden shotgun in an Elise, so take my opinion for what it’s worth. The Elise was more responsive to movements and I could feel everything the driver did through my seat. It was probably a blast for the driver to have something so responsive, but as a passenger, it was so raw and quick to change direction and speed with almost no padding to the seat, I almost got sick during the ride! Granted, the driver wanted to show off how powerful the brakes were and he slammed them on with no warning, but the bumpy ride down the back road didn’t lead up to the brake check very well. Had I been the driver, it would have felt amazing to have such control, but as a passenger not knowing what’s about to come for accelerations or turns, it can leave you beaten up.

That said, I own an NA Evora and love the car for road trips. 700+ miles and I feel great after a trip. Heck, my back usually feels better coming out than going in with the long trips. The car is way heavier than the Elise, but I want to ride with just that extra comfort in the car. Mine is also IPS, which makes it easier to drive, especially if there were someone younger looking to drive it in the future. I’ve never wanted the top down experience, so I don’t care that the Elise has a removable top as I’d keep it hard capped forever, so keep that bias in mind, too.

I voted Evora. You’d probably love the Elise more for yourself, but if you’re factoring what a passenger would want, the comfort of the Evora can’t be beat. Plus, if you’ve done the Elige twice before, branch out and go for something different, spice it up. Worst case is you want the Elige after all and sell the Evora for what you paid and buy the Elige in the end.
 

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I don't think I can ever pick one over the other, but I still choose Evora since it's what I own. At the end of the day, it will still be your money and it will definitely depend on your preference on which Lotus car to purchase.
 

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+1 for the looks of the Elise. It is such a good looking car. Of course, the Evora also looks great, and stands out from the crowd. The looks to cost ratio is significantly better for an Elise vs. early NA Evora, in my opinion, if budget constrained. I miss being able to take the whole family out in the fun car though. Clearly I just need to add another car to meet that need.
 

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In the near future, I will be in the market for my 3rd Lotus. I have owned 2 Elises previously and will getting back into one hopefully some time soon. I'm torn in my decision between finding an Evora or Elise/Exige.

With both of my Elises, the top was usually only on if it was raining or extremely cold. I love the top down feeling and it would be awesome to be able to give my little girl that experience when she is a little older.

I do love the Evora as well, but would miss being able to take the top off. I really wish they made a targa version or something! After hearing @Plackslayer's exhaust on his Evora, I was in love with that sound!

Post your reasons as to why you chose one over the other and vote!
Nothing like the wind in your hair and the fresh air...100%
 

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I have owned an Elise sold it to get the Evora S. Because I wanted to share the lotus experience with my kids when they are still young growing up. I remembered all my memorial auto experience with my dad growing up from road trips to learning how to change oil for the first time. My boys started in the back seats of the Evora and move to the front passenger seat. Now, my girls get to experience the Evora. Older in the front and younger in the rear. If I need to drive my kids, they will ask to ride in the Evora every time. After 4 years of Evora ownership, I missed the hardcore handling of the Elige, so I purchased an Exige NA about 2 years ago. Now the Evora get driven over 90% of the time while the Exige is on a tender. If I must let one go, it would be the Exige. My Evora S does everything better than my Exige beside the removable roof. If you think the removable top is more important than anything else, then forget the Evora and go back to the Elige. Or buy both.
 

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I'm on my 6th Lotus so you will have some fun catching up. I had a 2005 Elise and now a 2011 Exige S260 and 2018 Evora 400. I love the Exige but it is raw compared to the Evora as others stated above. Being seniors, my wife won't get in the Exige and I don't know how much longer I can. Traded in my 69 Elan last year for the Evora 400. Awesome car, comfortable, drives exceptionally. I prefer a quiet exhaust however in the Evora, with a push of a button, open the exhaust note to a nice rumble as you desire. The stock manual shift has always been sloppy on my Elise and Exige. I had the Exige modified for tighter shifting while the Evora switches gears smoothly and effortlessly.
I am at the crossroads as to which Lotus to keep as I only want one. The Exige seems more of a toy, I love looking at it sitting still in my garage and I have bonded with it for 10 years. The Evora is the better all around car and I also love looking at it. The Evora's leather interior, backup camera and modern creature comforts make my wife happy. I don't track the cars but drive spirited on California coastal roads. Each is so different yet so amazing sharing the same driving dynamics and Lotus magic.
I would vote for you to get an Evora as you have experienced the Elise. One of my cars may be up for sale soon.......
 
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