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You can have your cake...

...and eat it too, - if you're prepared to do a little aftermarket enhancement.

I stripped the interior completely and applied a variety of sound deadening materials to the doors, floor, bulkhead and firewall.

The result is no Lexus, but conversation is now relaxed, the car feels smoother and more refined, and the weight added (12kg) is inconsequential and more than offset by the forged wheels I also added.

It hasn't lost the essential Lotus "involvement", but the noises heard now are quite enjoyable, not harsh and unpleasant.

Given that some of the extra insulation is thermal, the air-conditioning now works better too!

Here's a couple of photos:






This was just the anti-drum sheeting layer. Above that went the thermal insulation, then the closed-cell foam. The interior is so small, you don't need much.

The other (often ignored) benefit is that after a long journey, you feel fresher and more relaxed. Excessive noise can be quite fatiguing.

When I have the interior fully re-trimmed in leather (something like the Europa interior below) it will be a very pleasant place in which to be cocooned for a while! ;)

 

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I know that for many, the sheer rawness of the Elise/Exige is a fundamental part of the experience (and I can understand that) but seriously, the difference in the car once the sound deadening is applied is remarkable.

The guys at the Lotus Service centre have said to me a couple of times now that they don't know what it is, but my car feels really good to drive compared with most others they service.

Since the only mods (thus far) are a shift reinforcer, Manly Engine Mount inserts and forged wheels, I figure it must be the insulation that makes the difference.

Incidentally, with the hardtop on, conversation is comfortable and easy on the bluetooth hands-free at 70mph...
 

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damn i really need the sound deadening...i drive closed windows and ac on....

how long did it take the sheets to come in after order?

did you DIY on the strip/install???
I'm in Australia and ordered from SS in the US, but it still only took a week. Send them an email and they'll be happy to guide you on the products to use.

I did the strip and install myself. Basic tools are all that's required, but the passenger's seat can be a b!tch because of the bolt locations. (Make sure you use blue loctite when reinstalling the seats and seat-belt bolts.)
 
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