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Discussion Starter #1
After washing my 2011 Elise this morning I was going to take it for a spin and realized I had no instruments. Gauges not working, no back lighting, no LED display. There seems to be a decent amount of info in the forums on back lighting going out or gauges being unresponsive but I couldn't find anything on the entire instrument cluster going dead. Can anyone point me to a thread on the topic or give me some insight into what might have happened?

I can take it into the shop this week if needed but if it is just a fuse or connection I can fix on my own I'd prefer to do it myself. To add insult to injury it is a beautiful day for a drive! Bummer.
 

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This happened to me a couple of times with my previous dash and now once with the new-replaced-under-warranty dash. I would've left it as-is after this most recent occurrence, as last time it happened Lotus replaced the dash. However, this time I needed the car and I had no dash, no ABS, and no traction control. To fix it, I pulled out and re-inserted every fuse I could find: the ones in the passenger footwell, the ones in the engine compartment, and the ones near the wiper motor. That cleared things up for me.

If you don't really need the car, wait until you can take it to the dealer - you may get a new dash (which may or may not be any better than the one you already have).

This is my first and last Lotus - best handling car I've ever driven, but I can't deal with the poor quality.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Sorry to hear you've had so many problems. I really hope that's not the case for me. I checked the manual for fuse info and none of circuits were actually labeled for the instrument cluster. I went ahead and pulled all of them but no luck...
 

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Discussion Starter #4
A little more info: I used the FUZZYCar app for my phone and I am getting all the readings from the car's computer so it seems to be a hardware problem. RPM and speedometer are dead, the LED display is dead, turn signal indicators are dead; but when I turn the car off, the red flashing alarm indicator works. All other electronics are okay. The stereo, lights, door locks, and power windows are all working fine. Frustrating...
 

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you could try disconnecting the battery for a while....couldn't hurt, but make sure the alarm is off first.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
I have to admit I was skeptical but thanks glb and jmiesse. That worked. It reminds me of old PCs when tech support always said "turn your computer off for 60 seconds and turn it back on." Apparently the Elise's on board computer needs to be "turned off for 60 seconds." Hahah. Thanks again.
 

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Lotus tech recently admitted to me that a batch of cars were recently passing through PID(?? some port inspection here on West Coast I believe) en route to China. He said though they were all brand new cars, 30% had cluster failures. I responded, "Give a whole new meaning to the term cluster-fuc"
 

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I have to admit I was skeptical but thanks glb and jmiesse. That worked. It reminds me of old PCs when tech support always said "turn your computer off for 60 seconds and turn it back on." Apparently the Elise's on board computer needs to be "turned off for 60 seconds." Hahah. Thanks again.
Yup, you rebooted your car....

glad to be of help.
 

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I've had similar problems except the car was hot. The LED washes out in the heat. Then I had the speedometer do the same thing twice. That was after the car had been in the sun all day. When you say turn the alarm off, do you mean hit the "disarm" button and then disconnect the battery for a good old fashioned reboot?
 

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Discussion Starter #11
When you say turn the alarm off, do you mean hit the "disarm" button and then disconnect the battery for a good old fashioned reboot?
I just hit the disarm/unlock button and disconnected the battery. The alarm did make a sad little dying sound but it was very quiet and only lasted about a second.
 

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I've had similar problems except the car was hot. The LED washes out in the heat. Then I had the speedometer do the same thing twice. That was after the car had been in the sun all day. When you say turn the alarm off, do you mean hit the "disarm" button and then disconnect the battery for a good old fashioned reboot?
The immobilizer will passively arm after 90 seconds, therefore the battery must be disconnected within that time.
Michael
 

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Jatx, I have your exact symptoms (post#4). I called Lotus USA in Georgia and he had sent a dash replacement to my nearest Lotus dealer. If what you did is a permanent fix then why would the Lotus tech replace this rather expensive part out without testing it first? I also have a 2011 Elise SC.BTW my battery was not charging fully and created some performance problems such as rough idle and a weird stumble at 3700 rpm. After installing a battery tender these problems went away!
 

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Discussion Starter #14
If what you did is a permanent fix then why would the Lotus tech replace this rather expensive part out without testing it first?
I don't know if disconnecting the battery for a few minutes was a permanent fix but I haven't had any other issues with my dash electronics since then (just over a month at this point).

Can anyone shed some light on why disconnecting the battery would "reboot" apparently dead electronics? It worked, but I don't know why.
 

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jatx, I did not get the new dash installed yet, due to the Tech being sick. I got tired of the waiting so I took out the manual and there was an addendum for the differences for the 2011 over the 2008 manual. It showed how to take the front cover below the windshield off,very easy. Under this cover was about 22 fuses. I removed three that I thought would be related and none of them were blown. However after putting back the old fuses the dash started working. If I had to guess it might be the fuse labelled for the radio/pack as per the manual. I didn't want to disconnect the battery for possible security/computer reflashing/relearning or whatever weird thing it could do. This way I just "rebooted" the dash only???
 

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Discussion Starter #16
Scott,
That sounds similar to what Michael did but he did it after the replaced dash crapped out too. Now thinking back, I forgot to check the fuses by the wiper motor. That may have cleared up the issue for me too.

I sent an email to Lotus' technical address about the issue. I'm not holding my breath, but I'll let you know if I get a response.
 

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I was approved for a new dash scheduled for next week and I am skeptical that this is going to be a permanent fix. Michael's case and others have proven my doubts. The good news is that if after the warrantied dash goes out I can unscrew the bolt between the windshield washer jets and slide back that piece and pull out that one fuse and put it back in again to get it working!!! It would be really nice if someone would figure out what causes this to occur and yes this fuse appears to protect the dash pack and stereo and is the stock Alpine 4 speaker setup.BTW no fuse has burnt out in this car yet.
 

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Can you kindly update whether Lotus can program your new dash with the old odometer reading so there won't be a sticker saying that ODO doesn't reflect real miles...etc. - when you finally get it replaced? Thanks in advance!
 

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Discussion Starter #20
Well, I did get a response from the Lotus Technical Dept. but it wasn't very enlightening:

Thank you for your enquiry. I am not aware of any issues and I do not know your current situation, so all I can suggest is contact your local Lotus dealer for some investigation work to see if there is a fault with the instrument pack or something else. Simply removing the fuse or disconnecting the battery simply resets the instrument pack like when a computer doesn't work properly you shut it down and restart it.

I hope with the help of your Lotus dealer you can get this issued resolved and thank you for contacting Lotus Cars.

Regards,

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