The Lotus Cars Community banner

1 - 20 of 75 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
36 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
A coworker saw a picture of the Elise and made a comment that it looked nice but if I wanted to drive real car to buy a Porsche. I told him it weighted 1900 lbs and was one of the best handling cars in the world. He laughed he said he was familiar with the car and said its great car if your looking to race a Boxster but not a real Porsche. He said he is willing to put his money in his mouth, that I wouldn’t keep up past 3rd gear. I am not familiar with 911 but with his engine in the rear I could see he might be fast on the straightway. However, how could he possibly keep up on the turns at least a Boxster is mid engine and has excellent handling. Is this guy talking up a storm or should I take him up on his offer??
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
426 Posts
A lot depends on the driver. 911s, if driven properly, are very fast. A good driver can use lift throttle oversteer to his or her advantage, but a bad driver can get in a lot of deep trouble with it. What model 911 does your buddy have? I thought that the elise I test drove felt more like a 911 than any other car I've ever driven.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
5,158 Posts
Ask your buddy to read this article: http://www.roadandtrack.com/article.asp?section_id=31&article_id=221&page_number=1

Sport package car will have even more mechanical grip (~ 1.2g on the 200ft skidpad, 911 Turbo is behind). No denying that the current 911 is a great GT car, but on your local canyon road, the Elise has its advantages. On the track, any current 911 is faster in a straight line. The Elise is going to lose a drag race, but it's obviously not made for that kind of driving. Perhaps your co-worker doesn't get his thrills with late braking and higher apex speeds. Is he insecure? The Lotus is about driving feel and pleasure, not not necessarily lap times. The R&T article is just one data point, but to me the Elise is the sports car of the two.

From the article:
It absolutely dominates the slalom with a record-breaking average speed of 73.0 mph; and at 9.595 seconds, it's the fastest to complete the right/left transition lap segment. This means that this asphalt-clawing roadster suffers only from lack of power to adjust the car's attitude on the skidpad and accelerate out of the tight hairpin. Once at speed, it can generate the most lateral grip. Around the hairpin, the Lotus's apex speed of 40.4 mph is much faster than the Ferrari's 34.1 mph.

And...
Looking at performance data alone, the Lotus Elise walks away as the winner. However, to be crowned as the best-handling car for both road and track, the champion not only has to show handling competency and inspire excitement and confidence, it must also not sacrifice the practicalities for road use. The question then becomes: Is there a difference between a good-handling car for street driving and racetrack lapping? The answer is, Yes. This is evident from the R&T editors' and Herta's subjective ratings, picking the 911 Turbo as the favorite for the road, and the 360 Modena for the track. Ultimately, it is still the Ferrari excelling in all categories that helps it claim the top podium spot as Road & Track's best-handling car.


For $42k, you could do a lot worse than the Elise. Just give your co-worker a ride once you get the car. ;)
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
157 Posts
Around a track the Elise will be quicker (a lot quicker with LSS) and not that much slower in a straight line drag - may be even quicker in the first three gears.

This is all stanard Elise vs a Standard 911. Get into a GT3 or similar and the Porsche is probably quicker all around, but then again it's two and half times the price so you'd bloody well want it to be.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
5,411 Posts
I love these people that berate others about having "a real car" what the hell does that mean. This is why I love my Turbo Miata. All these big inflated egos and big dollar cars were so fun to bust. I have raced quite a few late model 911 +4's and I beat them so badly that I thought I was racing alone. Please! The mighty GT3, and a Esprit Turbo I have run into were just able to hold there ground and usually ended up 1 car length behind me. So does this now magically mean they didn't have "real cars". My car was cheaper to buy new and mod then any of those cars by the thousands. A ZO6 would handedly beat up on a 911 and it is considerable cheaper. How would he defend his 911 "real car" theory with that. He's just saying this cause it is a 911 that he ownes. 911 is a common car that really doesn't super excel in anything for a sports car. It just does very well with many things such as ride comfort, performance, build quality etc, however it excelled at none. That's it's trade off. The Elise made other sacrifices, world class handling, and driver communication was not one of them. The Elise may not be the fastest straight line car but it exceedingly surpasses for one of the worlds greatest handling sports cars. Besides, how boring is it too look at a 911 when they are everywhere. Not so for the super elusive soon to come Elise. I would just park it next to that 911 and let everyone else’s excitement for the rare Elise do all the talking.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
9,150 Posts
Yeah, Chris, I hear ya. And Brian Herta even said that if the Elise had mor power...

I looked at the test results, noting that the Elise was downgraded on Throttle (fixed), shifting /transmission (fixed) and didn't have nearly enough "creature comforts". That too was kinda fixed, although it's still not likely in BMW or Porsche range for amenities. I'd LOVE to see the test done today.

I still have that road and track, having already been on the waiting list some time before that and CRAVING anything Elise. I got a definite impression from the article that the Lotus was the clear winner of "Best Handling Car in the World" (see the cover), but R & T didn't want to directly embarass/piss off Porsche and of course the almighty company of Ferrari. It's interesting that R & T DID adorn the cover of that mag with a sliding green Elise, not the Ferrari or the 911.

Tell your friend that you'll take the Elise, and use the other 40-50K to get a 4X4 and a boat. Or 5 world class vacations. Or anything else. And then ask him how many Carraras he sees drving to work compared to how many Lotuses? And one last question: if you parked the two side by side in a parking lot, which one would garner more attention? We all know the answer to that one.

I can't wait to get mine!!!:D
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,230 Posts


This picture was taken at LOG 22. The S2 is from LUSA and the other cars are my buddy's S1 190S, my Exige, another friend's C4 911 and my other buddy's MGB V8-conversion. I can tell you that at the time this was a brand-new C4 911.

No one was looking at the 911.......

Also - stock for stock the new Elise should be pretty equal to a 911 around the track. When you start modding it will depend on who has done what to the car. Driver is also very important.

The Elise will lose the drag race if you are going into 4-5 gears.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
9,150 Posts
I have to say that a V8 MGB is interesting to me, too. However, I do not remember my old Midget as being a very good handling car. Add a V8, and it's like strapping a rocket to the back of a 10 speed. Still, entrigued. How the hell did he fit it in?

Meat-thanks for the pic. Actually every car in that pic is more interesting than the 911. Perhaps it's because the 911 is relatively unchanged since the 60s, yawn.

Have you ever taken the Exige on the highway? Would you try now, since Elise will be about soon? I often considered buying an Elise or Exige and driving it illegally, even considered playing a VIN number switcheroo with an Elite or something. My wife straightened me out before I went down that path, though. :rolleyes: (I've had Elise fever for a while now). I'll bet the Exige is a blast to drive!!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,230 Posts
Miata - Ask away. My other friend built the V8. It's a fairly "simple" conversion. Remember, the MGB GT came with this motor - it's a Rover/Buick stock motor. The builder also has his own MGB V8 and he is currently building a MGA V8, which is a bit more work.

The B is a good handling car and shouldn't really be compared to a Midget.

I drove the Exige on the street when I first got it to put some miles on it. I did about 400 miles in one weekend. It really wasn't too fun. The car is hot inside and after about an hour on a summer day it looks like you have taken a shower. It's a car made for the track or "B" roads as they call them in the homeland. Not alot of fun on the highway - it also attracts way too much attention. I've got my S2000 for street driving.

Sure the VIN switch is easy - it's what happens if you get that one cop who know's what he is looking at. Unless you live in a state that has "special interest" plates I wouldn't do it.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,063 Posts
ACP said:
Get into a GT3 or similar and the Porsche is probably quicker all around, but then again it's two and half times the price so you'd bloody well want it to be.
Yup.. On the circuit during track days I'm usually completely destroyed by GT2's and GT3's, especailly when you get to a straight bit.

But indeed these cost a huge amount more and that is also the reason why you see so few of these great machines used in anger on the track. They are also hugely expensive to track when you look at the cost of brakes and such.. (and let's not even contemplate the ceramic jobbies...)

'Regular' 911's are very comparable to the Elise on track, but still significantly more expensive. Here it mostly comes down to driver skills and 'do you have the balls' to take corners faster..

Oh.. And have the 911 driver turn off all 'driver helpers' like stability control and such and watch the fun :)

Bye, Arno.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
5,607 Posts
meat said:
Miata - Ask away. My other friend built the V8. It's a fairly "simple" conversion. Remember, the MGB GT came with this motor - it's a Rover/Buick stock motor. The builder also has his own MGB V8 and he is currently building a MGA V8, which is a bit more work.


Thanks Meat,
I have a 5 liter V8 miata and as such I was just curious as to the details motor, rear end, brakes etc. I was curious how it worked on an MG. Sounds cool!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
302 Posts
911 - the triumph of evolution over design.

Interestingly, the GT3 has the same weight distribution as the Elise. Who else but Porsche sells a car with a strut type front suspension for over $100K?

I've been intrigued with the idea of seeing what a GT3 will do on the track - all the 911 Turbos I've seen on track days are not pushed hard enough to be competitive. I have seen some really fast race prepped NA 911s which are no longer street cars.

My guess is that a full race C5 (get rid of that cheap interior) would be about as good a bang for the buck as one could find. They're light, make big power without FI, and easy to find part for.

I think an Elise is the best of both worlds - a very light street/track car with a decent power to weight ratio. It's about 75 hp away from being perfect.

Jeff
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
5,599 Posts
Remind your friend that the 911's speed is owed to 40 years of constant development, not a great original design.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,721 Posts
Surferjer said:
And one last question: if you parked the two side by side in a parking lot, which one would garner more attention? We all know the answer to that one.
Better yet, have him (and his so) meet you (and your so) at a restaurant with valet parking, and see which one gets parked next to the front door, and which one gets taken around back.

That will teach him to make "real car" comments. :)
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,438 Posts
OT- But the latest Autocar has an article which compares the 111R favorably to the 360 Modena. A quote from SELOC:\

"Lotus press department must be wetting themselves over that article! Just goes to show that Hethel was/is in total denial about more power being needed to keep the Elise in contention... "



"Well they admit that you can't compare it on most axis. However the fact they say it gives the Ferrari a broken jaw and out communicates it on the corners will do more good for Lotus than a 500k of advertising I reckon. They also say its as fast as the Ferrari if the roads aren't too straight.

So come on Lotus, when are we getting the supercharged version that can outperform the Rarri?"
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
495 Posts
911s are great cars and historically, Porsche had a similar racing concept to Lotus' -- light cars with small displacement engines. Not that the 911 has a small engine now, though... nor is it 'light'

I've been through a few 911s and tracked them. They are a lot of fun to drive. Never raced against an Elise, but my guess is that on a fast track with big sweepers, a standard 911 is probably going to be a bit faster than the Elise based on power and gearing. On a tight circuit, I think the Elise will blow the doors off a standard 911 based on handling/huge weight advantage. GT3s are crazy fast, though...

Every car has it's ups and downs, and a good driver in a Ford Focus will likely beat a bad driver in a 911. Your friends 'bravado' about 'real Porsches' suggests to me that he doesn't know what he's talking about. Take some driver's ed classes and ask him to meet you at the track -- he may be eating some humble pie.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,230 Posts
Miata

Got some specs for you on the V8.....

Engine
1961 Buick 215 (3.5L)
aluminun block
bore .03 over cylinders
3/4 crower cam
carter 4 barrel carb 400cfm
compression 9.3 to 1
50lbs lighter than stock 4 cylinder
Buick 300 water pump
stock MG motor mounts
block hugger headers
proform GM alternator
aluminum MGBV8 valve covers

Transmission
Borg WarnerT-5 World Class
(Ford Mustang version)
6.3 to 1 overdrive
Buick 215 4 speed bellhousing
adapter plate from D&D

Rear axle
stock MGB (late model w/sway bar)
3.9 to 1

Wheels
15" Minilites
195/65R15 Dunlops
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
648 Posts
A couple of comments:

1. The car that won the "best handling" test was not only a Rover engine car, it was a little over 1,400lbs, the extra 600lbs will make a difference. The extra hp will offset that weight in a straight line, not in braking or cornering.

2. The Porsche tested in that artile was a 3,500lb turbo with stock suspension (pretty soft street setup).

I have tracked my Exige at Road Atlanta many, many times. It is 1,700lbs (wet) has 190hp. I also own 2 911s (996 Cab, 996 Turbo) and have tracked a C2.

From my limited drive in the new Fed Elise, a stock 996 would have trouble with it, however, if the 996 has the M030 Sport Suspension, or the X74 suspension (both are Porsche options) and a good driver, the lap times will be very simular. On a smaller track, I'd give the edge to the Elise, on a larger track I'd give the edge to a the 996.

My GT3 will be in next month, after I set it up for Road Atlanta, I'll be happy to give you lap time compairisions between the GT3 and the Exige.

Roy
 
1 - 20 of 75 Posts
Top