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My solution is that I just don't take the car anywhere where I am likely to have a problem. Luckily where I live (Portland) they have a big gap between every other spot on the street and parking outside the lines is a certain ticket. That combined with how small the car is means that most of the time I can find a spot where my car is 4-6 feet away from the next guys bumper. Add to that the car looks pretty expensive and most of the time people manage to stay away.

But be aware that one tiny little peck by somebody and the body is going to crack and split. They probably won't make it to the frame, but even so the headache is going to be painful.

Getting whacked on the side is more or less a sure thing if you park next to any sort of SUV given the difference in height, so there have been times I have paid extra for one of the lot with an attendant. A few bucks tip gets you a nice spot off to the side and is well worth it.

In Europe drivers understand that there are cars you can't kiss, but over here it is taken for granted that no harm will come from a slight tap. We just have to understand that is the way it is and make allowances.

Which reminds me. Watch out for SUVs, Minivans and the like. They never, every have their mirrors set so they can see something as low as the Lotus. Combine that with talking on the cell phone or swatting one of the kids and you are guaranteed to have them move right on top of you if you don't stay real wide.

Whenever your on a road with more than one lane each way it is best to assume the guy next to you is going to suddenly move over right on top of you at some point. Safer to pass or be passing as that tends to let them know your there.

And don't even get me started on taking the outside lane in 2 lane turns.
 

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Edelman said:
And don't even get me started on taking the outside lane in 2 lane turns.
Explain?
 

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We have a lot of 2 lane turn lanes around here. It is not uncommon for the car on the inside lane to drift into the outer one either as they go through the turn or just as they straighten out (either because they are setting up to make a turn somewhere down the road and really, really want to get in that other lane or because they aren't paying attention).

Even if they aren't talking on the cell and do look to see if the other lane is clear (no sure thing), they aren't going to be looking for something as small or low as an Elise.

So unless you pull up ahead of the guy on the inside to where you know he has seen you it won't be but a few weeks before somebody (generally in something tall) is heading right for your side. Best to be prepared for it and at least leave an escape route.

After having this happen twice (both times the guys sheepishly waved an apology) I got the message. It's up to me to make sure other cars are aware of me and when they mess up I have to be prepared to get out of the way. In this case the problem is pretty easy-- unless absolutely necessary I stay in the inside lane on a two lane turn.

However this is one of many situations where the combination of the Lotus's size/profile sharing the road driver who don't take what they are doing seriously (unlike Europe) puts you at serious risk.

Since I like living and just about any sort of altercations with an SUV/minivan/Pickup would more or less shred the Lotus (and me) my driving has become much more defensive.

To start with I don't drive a lot on highways. The two lane back roads are more fun anyway. But when I am in traffic unless I know otherwise I assume most cars don't see me. I check mirror angles looking for their eyes to see if I am in their field of view, look for body language from the way the other cars are moving about and generally make figuring out who has seen me and who hasn't a part of my driving.

I don't end up in traffic often, which is good because frankly it gets a bit tiring. Now throw in some rain, so the top is up and you lose visibility and suddenly its really no fun at all.

Don't get me wrong, I love the car. On the right road it is the best feeling I have every had on 4 wheels. But I think it would be in a lot of places as a daily driver.
 

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Edelman wrote:
I just barely stopped somebody from doing this to my S1. He was completely unapologetic. Told me my car should have bumpers he can whack in to.
I would have responded that he needed to have a scrotum that protects his testicles better also. That's a completely inane arguement to nearly hitting your car. What about learning to drive and PARK the vehicle you own? There's no excuse for parking by braile.

I worried someone is going to sit on my bodywork. When I had my 308 GTSi, some idiot was sitting on my fender when I ran into the post office. I yelled at him to get off and he gave me a dirty look and said that I should "just chill." :mad: Sadly I didn't notice the minor concave dent that he put into the fender. Thankfully the Elise won't dent, but I still don't want some moron sitting on my car.

Bob
 

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On the 'people are inconsiderate' direction this seems to be taking, someone stole the safety equipment off of my boat sometime last night. It's just a little 16 ft. Hobie Catamaran, but they stole my flares, my emergency blanket, my local chart, and my paddle. What the hell?!! It's maybe a 70 dollar loss, total, but it's really freaking inconvenient to be planning on going out, then having to make a trip to the store instead to restock equipment. Looks like I'm going to have to strip the boat clean everytime I put in, just to prevent this kind of crap. People are a$$holes.

Cade
 

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Looks like I'm going to have to strip the boat clean everytime I put in, just to prevent this kind of crap. People are a$$holes.
Sorry for your loss. The human race is aweful. Maybe I need to live like a monk, so there will be nothing for people to steal.
 

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Yeah, that might help... until the day you wake up and... 'hey, who took my robes?' LOL. There's always someone out there looking for anything not locked up... :(

Cade
 

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I am a bit sympathetic to the the guys who parallel park using the kiss method sparingly and only where appropriate. For example who among us when working to get into that little spot no one else was willing to try hasn't touched one end of the other knowing that it wasn't going to hurt anything?

One hopes for drivers that pay attention and take one look at the Elise and realize that it hasn't got any bumpers or see "exotic" and decide prudence and a wide berth were called for. Luckily most people are one or the other. But all it takes is one to ruin your whole day.

But be warned. In oh so many ways the Elise demands you pander to her demands. This ain't no Porsche guys. You can't just hop in and take off without some planning.
 

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Discussion Starter #29
Edelman said:
I am a bit sympathetic to the the guys who parallel park using the kiss method sparingly and only where appropriate. For example who among us when working to get into that little spot no one else was willing to try hasn't touched one end of the other knowing that it wasn't going to hurt anything?

One hopes for drivers that pay attention and take one look at the Elise and realize that it hasn't got any bumpers or see "exotic" and decide prudence and a wide berth were called for. Luckily most people are one or the other. But all it takes is one to ruin your whole day.

But be warned. In oh so many ways the Elise demands you pander to her demands. This ain't no Porsche guys. You can't just hop in and take off without some planning.
:no: I have never parked using the "kiss method". I have however written down license plates of people that do use this method and given the info to the owners of damaged cars... And I will continue this practice. :no:

If you need to hit the car behind you in order to park, then you don't know how to park and need practice in a safe environment.

PS: I can't think of any Porche owners that would take kindly to some idiot hitting their car as they attempted to park. After all most cars today have painted bumpers and respraying a Porsche isn't gonna be cheap.
 

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worse than shopping carts... in the last 6 months i have been (mildy) rear ended 2x !!! on a bmw thats about 500 bucks in refinishing the rear bumper, in the Elise.. thats a whole new rear! ..ugg, i am so scarred of stoping at light and about 5 secs latter looking into the rear mirror, hearing that squeel, and ...BAM!
 

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fitfan said:
worse than shopping carts... in the last 6 months i have been (mildy) rear ended 2x !!! on a bmw thats about 500 bucks in refinishing the rear bumper, in the Elise.. thats a whole new rear! ..ugg, i am so scarred of stoping at light and about 5 secs latter looking into the rear mirror, hearing that squeel, and ...BAM!
I've been leaving a lot more space in front of me at stoplights to at least have a chance to get out of their way- then I ease up after the car behind me has stopped .
 

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Edelman said:
who among us when working to get into that little spot no one else was willing to try hasn't touched one end of the other knowing that it wasn't going to hurt anything?
Me for one.

If I can't fit into a spot with out "bumping", I don't even consider trying it. And there's no such thing as "knowing it wasn't going to hurt anything". :no:

I've always worried about this with my Elan. But at least the Elan has "sacrificial" fiberglass bumpers attached to the fiberglass body, so you don't have to replace the whole body when some idiot "bumps" the car...:huh:

Tim Mullen
 

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fitfan said:
worse than shopping carts... in the last 6 months i have been (mildy) rear ended 2x !!! on a bmw thats about 500 bucks in refinishing the rear bumper, in the Elise.. thats a whole new rear! ..ugg, i am so scarred of stoping at light and about 5 secs latter looking into the rear mirror, hearing that squeel, and ...BAM!
And if the Elise's brakes are everything they've been said to be, it's not just the stop lights you'll be watching the rear-view mirror on...

Who's making "Caution - stops on a dime" bumper stickers? :eek:
 
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