For me, right now, I cannot see giving this car up. I know, eventually something else will come along, but this is my idea of the perfect sports car. Quick, light, small, economical, exotic looks and not outrageously expensive. That's about as good as it gets, IMO.
I seriously intend to keep it around for a long, long time. The way that I see it, it will make a great weekend car for a few years, then will do great duty as a track car/weekend car (I can't track it too much until I can live with myself after an off), then it will serve life as a great street-legal track machine. Why would I ever let it go?
That said, I've intended to keep a couple of automobiles forever and don't have any of them any more.
Forever for me. With the path car design is taking, I see the future (and present) cars as being overdesigned. This could be one of the last true sports cars. And I doubt it will get any easier for small production companies.
I suspect if I replace the Elise, it will be with something I build ad there are still some interesting component cars..
Well, considering that my wife and I are looking to start a family in the next couple years, I have a feeling I won't be replacing this Elise for a long, long time. I don't mind though, it'll be a good car to teach our kids to drive on someday. Can you imagine what cars will be like in 20 years? So many driver's aids, it'll be difficult to teach someone how to, well, DRIVE.
I'll keep it until something even better comes along, which may never happen. There have been few cars more perfectly suited to what I enjoy. Even the old Elans and other lightweights gave up too much in comfort and reliability. I don't know if anyone will ever come out with a sub-50k convertible that is better than the Elise.
That said, I have to admit that it is hard for me to accept being locked into a car forever. I really enjoy restoring old cars. In recent years I've always had a truck, a race car and a sports car. The sports car gets turned every year or two when I want to build something new. The Elise will put the brakes on that since I just can't see having 4 cars all to myself.
And before anyone thinks I'm rich or bragging about my stable... The truck is 9 years old with 150k miles. The race car is 22 years old with 100k miles. My current "sports" car is 15 years old with 80k miles. Combined they are worth less than half what the Elise will cost.
I voted for 10+ years. My thoughts are similar to a few previous posters. If something better came along (for a reasonable price) I could certainly imagine upgrading. But I doubt that will happen. Cars are generally getting bigger and heavier for the sake of safety and luxury. I think the Elise is a rare opportunity to buy something that goes against that trend. It might not happen again.
I'd really like to keep it forever, but I know me too well. I like to buy new things. So, probably 10+ years down the road, I'll decide it's time to sell. Or maybe I'll do what my Dad did and keep "it" in the garage in a barely running state
I intend to keep mine forever. With the changes comming the Elise will be the best ever, gas engined, English Sports Car. The only better possibility I see comming is the Electric Elise Ver. II (The E2?) Say 100 HP at each wheel. Even lower CG, Less weight transfer ...