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Discussion Starter #1
Hello,

Long time caroholic who went sober about 3 years ago. Recently I've been feeling that old familiar itch, I find myself doing research and calculating cost over the last few weeks. In the title I made the remark about switching sides, that's based on my consideration of owning a European car. Something I felt fairly certain I'd never do. In fact, I've never owned anything that wasn't Japanese.
I have actually been looking to get a project car that I could tinker on and slowly build but I find that there's been a shift in my interests and ultimate usage of said car. Having thought this whole time I wanted a straight line fast project, specifically a 240z restomod with a 2JZGTE (which is still a dream of mine). Located where I am the racing scene either competition or social wise for such things isn't high. What this area has in spades however are some of the best winding roads in the US. Enters my interest in a Lotus.

I have a confession to make. Having only recently (the last week) educated myself on the Lotus models and what their true capabilities are, prior to this I subconsciously poo-poo'd them in my mind knowing only that they were powered by a Celica engine. My assumption being that they're just a more expensive better looking Miata. My apologies. Considering myself a "car guy" this was one terribly misinformed assumption that I've been making for ohh about 15 years now. I have seen the light, and it is bright and shining!

My current knowledge still being limited, I know this IS the next vehicle I want to own. I look forward to soaking up as much knowledge as I can between now and the time I make the plunge.
 

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To be honest, I knew of and raced the old Elans and Super 7's years ago and respected their ability.. (They really show what lightness can do). Anyway, I was kinda getting out of autocross as the Elises were hitting the shores and I too kinda poo-poo'd them too as a lard butt Lotus..lol. When I finally came back to play racing, I found how very competent the later Lotus are and entirely worthy to carry the banner. That being said, if you can handle contortions, the Elige is hard to beat... if comfort has a greater appeal, the Evora can be a great uncommon ride with incredible limits too.
 

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The Japanese bug is hard to shake, and I'm not certain you can. But I hope you prove me wrong.

Here is a story of a guy I knew fairly well.
Jason was a Toyota guy. He started with a celica as a kid and had wet dreams about Supra MKIV's. He owned various toyotas over the years, older Supras, other Celicas, a brief stint with an MR2. He got married and bought his wife a highlander. He bought a Tundra as a daily. Then one day he came across a BMW M5, e39 vintage. This is where Jason and I cross paths. My lotus' stable mate is a 2001 M5, and I am fairly active in that community as well, I've had mine since '07. He loved the car. The torque was addicting. The properness of the car, the class of the community was all to his liking, for almost 4 years he modded the M5, improved it, maintained it. He loved the car. His kids enjoyed the spacious back seat, his wife enjoyed the image the stately sedan created. Then one day he posted a pic of a Supra MKIV he bought as his M5's stable mate. We all thought it was cool, Jason finally got his dream car, it was obvious our friend, and valued member of the community wanted this for a long time, a Supra can't be any more different from an M5, they serve different purposes, they scratch different itches having both would make sense. Nope....he had both for about 3 months. Jason sold the M5, left the community, de-friended us on FB, left the forum, left the FB groups, and went full on back into Toyota mode. It was weird, and sad.

So, what we can learn from this is, make absolute sure you want to make this leap. Lotus, and english cars in general have their quirks. They are not perfect, these things are the things we've come to enjoy. They are not Japanese, they are not German. They do not have that feel of design perfection, the solidness. When you experience these things, you might learn to love them like we do, or you might get more and more discouraged knowing that your familiar japanese cars simply would not give you the same hassles, the feeling that you are the only one around (given Lotus rarity in general) instead of part of a huge local community may depress you. I hope not, but it could.

With all that being said, welcome! Do your research, and even if your time with us is brief, you will enjoy it and we are here to help.
 

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Less is Better
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The thing I got out of the description is that you still don't grasp how great a Miata is!

And, congratulations for not automatically defaulting to a Porsche.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
I have nothing but respect for Miatas, one of the most fun cars I've driven stock. More so endorsing the looks of the Lotus.

I appreciate the warm greeting from you guys. And have no fear I'm locked into this decision, I had no thoughts of any other European car that's for sure. I have confidence in this vehicle simply because I've always believed in performance above everything else. This certainly checks that box and many others. I would say that the only reservation that I have is probably what most people's are when interested in a Lotus and that is the availability to cost ratio. Where my plans with building a 240Z was to get a rolling shell that I would have to restore and update while at the same time replacing the internals in a 2JZ. Now that I have decided on a Lotus the upfront cost is going to be substantially more, Even if I went with a salvage title option which I have briefly looked into. That option also doesn't seem to be too cost effective based on the price of replacement parts it seemed to me that it would roughly cost about the same and that's with me doing the majority of the labor. I'll just have to keep my eyes open and continue to research what will work best for me and my goals for the car.
 
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