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'94 S4
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I emailed the owner a few times through eBay. Wanted to know about the theft report on the car's Auto Check. Hhe says the car was not stolen, but that the original dealer lost the title and had to fill the "stolen" box on the DMV form to get a replacement. Bad break if true; hurts the value of the car to have it on its record. Owner is willing to have a prospective buyer drive it. My first message here. Looking for an Esprit and want to say thanks to all who post a lot of useful info.
 

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I wouldn't worry about "stolen" ruining the value. It's an Esprit; they really don't hold their value anyway.

I would worry about a "rebuilt" title, but not stolen.

When I was looking for an Esprit, I found 2 that were being sold by "friends." that is a big no-no to me. :no: It usually signifies something wierd.

one thing of note, the ebay auction notes that the car could use a recharge on the AC system. That is usually a sign that you will need to spend some money to fix things! AC systems are sealed and don't need a recharge unless there is a leak/problem somewhere. the AC isn't terribly expensive to fix on these cars. just be aware of it.
 

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Not necessarily, I bought mine two years ago and the AC needed to be recharged. I did it (though beware it is difficult finding Freon-12) and it has worked fine ever since. It's a 22 years old car, the freon was bound to leak out after all this time.

What I will warn you is to make sure to drive it on a cool day, without the AC the huge windshield makes the car into an oven. When I bought mine I drove it back from Chicago in 100 degree weather. It was a KILLER!!!


one thing of note, the ebay auction notes that the car could use a recharge on the AC system. That is usually a sign that you will need to spend some money to fix things! AC systems are sealed and don't need a recharge unless there is a leak/problem somewhere. the AC isn't terribly expensive to fix on these cars. just be aware of it.
 

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'94 S4
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238 Posts
I agree friends selling for friends is one more thing to sort out when looking at a car. As for "value" market says what its worth; just mean that "stolen" on title doesn't help.
 

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Not necessarily, I bought mine two years ago and the AC needed to be recharged. I did it (though beware it is difficult finding Freon-12) and it has worked fine ever since. It's a 22 years old car, the freon was bound to leak out after all this time.
[snip]/QUOTE]

Same here - 88 Esprit 30K miles bought July 2011- after diagnosing a loose wire (preventing clutch to engage on AC compressor) system recharged with R134 (it was converted from R12 by previous owner). All components appear to be factory original except for the R134 conversion.

1 lbs added in January 2012 and it's worked ever since. If there is a leak, it's very slow. Not the coolest AC due to the weird design of the knee-level vents (and R134 is less efficient than R12). But good enough for me.
 

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I emailed the owner a few times through eBay. Wanted to know about the theft report on the car's Auto Check. Hhe says the car was not stolen, but that the original dealer lost the title and had to fill the "stolen" box on the DMV form to get a replacement.
I'm not sure that passes the sniff test. I'm in Georgia, so maybe it's different here, but I've a) lost the title to my Esprit years ago when we had a small house fire, and somehow in the packing and unpacking, it got lost, and b) bought a car with a replacement title for a lost title.

In both cases, the title is identified as a replacement title, but it refers to the document, not the car. I can't imagine a state requiring someone to (falsely!) claim the entire car was stolen in order to replace a document.

I'd call the DMV of the titling state to confirm if the story he's giving is really the way they do it.
 

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'94 S4
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238 Posts
The price has been raised a couple thousand along w/the updated description. The current description is similar to the one the seller used the first time (first time I know about) the car was listed on eBay. It was listed two times after that w/o the theft info but w/the AutoCheck available. Something south of 15K would be more correct but even then would you want a car w/its history? Think of the headache it'd be selling it later on.
 

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I don't like when eBayers obviously use a shill. This guy had the starting price of $18.5, but a reserve/buy it now of $18.6. It had a bid for $18.5 for days and didn't sell. You can't tell me a legit buyer wouldn't go the extra $100. Should be banned from eBay.

Expect that dishonestly to bleed through every aspect of the car's representation.
 

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Looks decent. No obvious neglect or signs of being a recovered basket case. But it probably needs some work besides the AC.

The ad brags about the previous owner changing the belts at 14k miles, but how many years ago was that ? The ceramic turbos and electric charge cooler pump is a good upgrade. But yeah 25k is nuts. I've never seen an SE sell for that much. The best examples seem to go for 18-20k.
 

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Here's another interesting one:
Lotus : Esprit Esprit s4 Colin Chapman Lotus : Esprit Esprit s4 Colin Chapman | eBay

Strange that it's had no autocheck history before 30K miles, and if they listing is correct, it's only done 2000 miles in the last 7 years. That's going to be painful for the next owner.

Also, strange when they don't even post interior/engine pics. Makes you wonder if they just went up to someone's car and took a few snaps and copied down their VIN in the window.

Can it really be called an S4 with same bumpers as an SE? It has S4 door handles and wheels, but unless it's the lighting, the paint on the door doesn't even match the paint on the rear.

It's a no reserve auction, which makes it interesting to watch.
 

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Should not be so negative. Better to desire more info.
Based on the VIN this is a transition car, has some S4 changes, not sure if car is all stock.
As far as I know the Colin Chapman SE was only sold in France in '93, quite rare, the VIN indicates a US car.

Actually, can find some nice cars on EBay, also can always walk away from a misrepresented car. Ask Questions, be cautious, but don't assume a scam.

Randy
 

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Should not be so negative. Better to desire more info.
Based on the VIN this is a transition car, has some S4 changes, not sure if car is all stock.
As far as I know the Colin Chapman SE was only sold in France in '93, quite rare, the VIN indicates a US car.

Actually, can find some nice cars on EBay, also can always walk away from a misrepresented car. Ask Questions, be cautious, but don't assume a scam.

Randy
Sorry if I came across negative to you, that was not the intent. I admit that I don't think the seller has great skills in marketing his/her car, but mainly I was asking questions about what looks like an interesting car with a no reserve auction -- which is always interesting. We all know that an Esprit that has been sitting unused is a recipe for trouble, so don't beat me up for that one.

If nothing else, I am bringing attention to the car so other people see it that can vet it out for themselves if they are interested. With a no reserve auction, this car could go so cheap that someone that otherwise wouldn't be looking to buy a car might jump on it at the last moment.

Oh, and my car that I just bought is an eBay car. And I sold my 91 Jim Clark Esprit on eBay in 1999 with great success. So no need to school me on eBay.
 

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So is that Colin Chapman edition car a 93.5 with an S4 interior ? Or is that a Euro spec car somewhere between the US 93.5 SE and S4 ?


It is strange there isn't more detailed pictures. And the seller only has 1 feedback. Very sketchy. If I was in Atlanta I'd certainly want to check it out. Maybe it's an accident recovery or something. The paint does look off on that door compared to the rear.
 

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It's an Esprit; they really don't hold their value anyway.
Most older exotics dont. Ferrari 348 = $110K new, $35K all day long now. Ouch. The best cars DO hold their value from what Ive found. I say that because you cant buy a truly excellent Esprit for cheap money. Rolling jalopies with excuse after excuse.... no doubt, they are cheap. Top cars in fully-sorted and running condition? They do fairly well.

As for this car....gotta dig and get the scoop. The drivers seat looks to me like it has a lot of wear for just 18K miles too.
 

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Well the price was raised on EBAY because this car was listed in other digests, papers, etc. and some yahoooo drove the car and said he'd pay the 19.5k for it, which was asked in local paper. Can't cancel ebay, so price was raised. Of course he did a no show with the down payment. Had about 6 people drive it and were very happy about the way it drove, rode, shifted etc. But! Nobody seems to have money. Now auto check is not included with ebay, have to pay for it to show with ad. It will be back for sale soon as auto check can tie in with ad on ebay. And there was NO SHILL, I don't know why a person wouldn't follow up with an extra $100.00, or get a hold of me after auction ended?????
 

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Mike drove it, his friends drove it, he said it was nice, ran good, told me 22 year old leather was different than todays, Lotus used what they could come up with then. Gave him the phone # for the 1st owner, (that is getting sick of phone calls). Said he'd get back to me, again, no follow up. So I'm getting sick of tire kickers, as much as you see my Esprit on Ebay
 
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