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What question would you ask them?

Seriously.
 

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wow. Tough question - I suppose I would enquire about allocations - how they determine the amount of cars to each dealer. And ask them to clarify the statement in the last memo regarding production #'s by year end/1st quarter 2005...

Being #39 at my dealer, I don't know whether to expect my car my December/January or late next year. I don't expect to know the exact date, but approximately what month? That is not asking for too much...
 

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I'd ask them if they could use an orange thread on the seats. I'd be willing to pay a little more for factory customization.

I don't know how possible it is, but if they're hand built cars, it shouldn't be too hard ?
 

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Until the initial order folks (like myself) get more concrete information on delivery estimates, I'd guess any Q&A would get hung up on very relevent delivery/allocation questions.

Once more cars are in-hand, perhaps more technical "user" questions would make the top of the list.

So, yeah, "Dude, where's my car?"
 

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Really not interested in all the fine details of allocation, delivery etc. Probably a lot of questions they couldn't really answer. Changes for the '06 or next generation Elise. Variations of the Elise, new Lotus models in the pipeline.

Stuff they could more likely give us insight too, support for those competing with the Elise or meets and events for everyone else. Coming from a engineering background lots of technical details about the design, suspension, motor, handling etc. would be what I'd be most interested in.
 

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What ground loop said - the good stuff won't come up until they figure out the immediate problems. I would love to ask about future products, etc.

But first I want to know when to expect my car, give or take 30 days. I know they have alot of orders and they are small but c'mon! Is it going to be 4 months? 12?
 

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What are they planning on doing to improve information to Lotus USA and then to dealers? Either the dealers are incompetent, shady or just have no information.
 

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Donovan,

Unfortunately for us, #39 and #40 at PP is not likely to show up until Q2/Q3 05.

I don't think they have officially put in a full 20 orders with the factory, but I could be wrong, since it's impossible to get info out of them.
 

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I would also inquire about the Exige, and I would also ask what we can expect from the Nissan GT-R (in terms of suspension, handling, etc) and also ask what the new Esprit is going to be like (hopefully it doesn't have the big butt and tail lights that the computerized photos had).
 

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How many cars will be produced in Model Year 2005 and when does that production year end and Model Year 2006 begin?

What is the monthly build rate of US cars at peak production?

How do they feel about dealers selling cars above MSRP?

What sort of car will they bring out next?

Will they open a driving school and if so, when and where?

Is there a tiered allocation scheme and what is the underlying strategy? (I don't expect to learn each dealer's allocation, just would like to understand their basic approach).

What is the strategy for adding new dealers and how does Lotus intend to supply them with cars without treating long waiting existing customers and dealers unfairly?

Is it too late to switch my car to Ice Blue?

Has Lotus set up a parts distribution network and will it be more eficient than their existing communications network?

Do they ever intend to open up a merchandise shop?

Will the Elise change for the 2007 model year due to the waiver expiration?
 

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i don't know the auto industry's build complications, as in the day-to-day management of staff, supplies and vendors, but i would guess they know their business very well. as a sole proprietor/print-design art director, i know my business very well, and when clients ask me to design a brochure or annual report, we can get very specific in the level of detail in the "ordering" process. it invariably includes changes throughout the process, even on-press (in relative terms, as the car is on the assembly line).

my question to Lotus would be if these are hand-built exotic cars, essentially one of a kinds, why couldn't we (for example) oder the carpeting, sound insulation and electric windows as separate line items? as opposed to only as the package. i personally don't like leather seating surfaces, and prefer the breatability and non-slip feel of cloth, but would have like some of the other elements of the touring package. i understand and appreciate the minimalism of the car, but within the realm of what is offered, how much more work is it to add 3 line items instead of 1 group package??

for one, they could make a few more dollars, and two the added personalization of the exotics would make these cars/the Lotus brand that much more exclusive. with the bigger and far more complex builders like GM, you can order individual items as mentioned above, and their logistics are greater in complexity. as a (fellow) small business, i would like to know what the reason for their inability to handle that level of detail? quite often i have clients express their amazement that my small studio produces projects that are on-par with the larger agencies ...
 

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Esprit,
I think you're spot on regarding options, and I suspect something along those lines will be in the offing but certainly not for a bit yet. Restricting the options eased the build process and probably has made it easier to have inventory control and to also streamline and improve the process. I think us first years are essentially providing the learning curve for Lotus in the US. Remember they want to have a long term presence here.

I can tell you that suggestions individuals have made during this process have been heeded by them. They are listening to us.

Chris
 

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Discussion Starter #17

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Discussion Starter #18
jml1952 said:

What sort of car will they bring out next?

Expect an Esprit replacement, but they are close lipped on this.

It has been stated by English that there will be three cars.
 

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i can sum up my buring question in 3 words:

allocations? allocations? allocations????
 
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