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Discussion Starter #1
So I've had my eyes on Evoras for a while now, but am just having a hard time finding an example that seems like the right car for me. Now granted, I know in a limited market it's important to play the waiting game but in comparison the Elise market feels like it's much more vibrant.

I know the Elise/Evora are fundamentally different cars so I had some questions on Elise ownership.

1) I used to own a C5 Corvette that was plagued with electrical gremlins. The car drove great, but always having something random wrong with the car really took away from the ownership experience. Are Elise's prone to issues like this? Random squeeks and rattles won't bother me as I have DD duties handled, I just don't want to be constantly having to repair things.

2) What appeals to me about the Elise is that it has a vibrant aftermarket, but can the cars be enjoyed in mostly stock form? When I owned my C5 it was very obvious to me that it needed a whole host of upgrades...will that be obvious in the Elise? The only thing I am considering is getting a supercharger because I tend to like a little bit of punch in my cars.

3) I know the stereo is not at all a high-point in these cars but is it somewhat serviceable? I'm sure I'll love the sound of the engine, etc. but I do like listening to music when I escape. Is that a somewhat feasible thing to seek in a stock car? Or am I going to feel wholly disappointed?

4) The main reason for looking into an Elise is budget. Seems like great examples can be had for $30K whereas N/A Evoras are more in the $40K market and Evora S's (which I really want) start at $50K. Will the Elise scratch the Evora itch? Or is it worth holding out for an Evora?
 

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2005 Lotus Elise
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Everytime I drive my Elise I feel like its going to rattle itself apart, it is loud, you feel every bump, the stereo is next to useless at driving speeds. I would say hold out for a Evora because thats what you actually want. If you can afford 30k, wait a bit till you can afford 40k or 50k.

Edit- I am not saying I dont like the elise, just giving you my feel on it, not that they are all bad things.
 

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2006 Lotus Elise
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1) I've owned my 2006 Elise since 2015. I have not had any electrical issues or anything break on the car that rendered it unusable. One of the terminals on my battery corroded and the car failed to start a couple times. I replaced the battery with a Shorai and haven't looked back. There's been a few little things that were all within the normal issues with these cars like the plastic tabs on the headlights buckets breaking. Plenty of solution here in the forum for these little things.

2) My car is pretty much bone stock. I have enjoyed it immensely. I did a baffled oil pan, upgraded rear toe links and a few other little reliability things, but the car has been a lot of fun. Sure, a supercharger would spice things up, but the vast majority of the time, I'm just cruising around with the roof off in nice weather, I haven't felt the need to go crazy with mods.

3) I do not even bother trying to listen to the stereo anymore. It's absolutely terrible. It's a combination of the speakers being too small/too few/poorly placed, and the Elise cabin being generally a loud place. But hey, people have stereos on their motorcycles, to each their own.

4) The cars are too different to compare in this way, I feel. The Elise is so raw, and feels like a wholly uncompromising sports car. The Evora feels much more finished, much more like a 'real' car and is closer (in philosophy, I suppose) to a Porsche Cayman, while the Elise would be closer to an Arial Atom, maybe? As I've said in other threads, I have a DD that's quiet, comfortable, luxurious and easy to drive and live with. In the evenings or on the weekends when I want to drive some backroads or do a track day, I want that car to feel special, unlike a 'real car and more like a big go-kart or a toy, which it is. I want to take the roof off and enjoy the purest possible connection to the car. Sure, the Elise is hot, it's loud, the stereo is useless, the roof leaks in the rain, the headlights are terrible and the body work is fragile. But nothing else delivers the same combination of lightweight, purity, exotica, efficiency, fun and affordability.

Having said all that, if anything were to happen to my Elise, I would very seriously consider replacing it with an Evora S simply for the fact that I've owned and enjoyed an Elise, and I think the Evora would be very enjoyable as well, the great dynamics and handling but with more comfort and usability.
 

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Acme Super Moderator ** The Enforcer **
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I think @Verichai makes good points. I may be moving soon, and honestly after reading a review of the Evora GT, it's a Porsche that I'm shopping. 718 GT4, 911 GT3 (or RS) or a 911 Turbo S. I'll go test an Evora again, but based on the reviews I've read the Evora isn't at the top of the heap. I do think it's better looking.

San
 

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No way to have decent sound in an Elise. It sounds like you are in a small tin can, because you are.

Bone stock Elise is fine, and these are the most valuable too.

As said above, an Evora is like a “real car”, an Elise is almost a kit car for the track.
 
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The Elise and the Evora offer totally different driving experiences. I've owned both, and I started selling the Evora within a week of getting it. The Evora is a nice car, just like an Audi TT or a Porsche. The Elise is a unique driving experience. I have, and love, my Audi TT and my Porsche Cayman. But they will never be even close to my Elise. I wear ear buds when I'm in the Elise, even if I'm not listening to anything, as hearing protection. If you want comfort, buy an Evora; if you want to feel as if there is nothing between you and the road, buy an Elise. But drive both before you buy them!
 

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Dreaming of Lotus
2005 Elise Sport Touring
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If "always have little things wrong" takes away from your experience that much I'd almost rec not getting a Lotus at all. Heh.

But you should seriously drive one, they are freaking awesome and so I've totally insane if you super charge one.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
1) I've owned my 2006 Elise since 2015. I have not had any electrical issues or anything break on the car that rendered it unusable. One of the terminals on my battery corroded and the car failed to start a couple times. I replaced the battery with a Shorai and haven't looked back. There's been a few little things that were all within the normal issues with these cars like the plastic tabs on the headlights buckets breaking. Plenty of solution here in the forum for these little things.

2) My car is pretty much bone stock. I have enjoyed it immensely. I did a baffled oil pan, upgraded rear toe links and a few other little reliability things, but the car has been a lot of fun. Sure, a supercharger would spice things up, but the vast majority of the time, I'm just cruising around with the roof off in nice weather, I haven't felt the need to go crazy with mods.

3) I do not even bother trying to listen to the stereo anymore. It's absolutely terrible. It's a combination of the speakers being too small/too few/poorly placed, and the Elise cabin being generally a loud place. But hey, people have stereos on their motorcycles, to each their own.

4) The cars are too different to compare in this way, I feel. The Elise is so raw, and feels like a wholly uncompromising sports car. The Evora feels much more finished, much more like a 'real' car and is closer (in philosophy, I suppose) to a Porsche Cayman, while the Elise would be closer to an Arial Atom, maybe? As I've said in other threads, I have a DD that's quiet, comfortable, luxurious and easy to drive and live with. In the evenings or on the weekends when I want to drive some backroads or do a track day, I want that car to feel special, unlike a 'real car and more like a big go-kart or a toy, which it is. I want to take the roof off and enjoy the purest possible connection to the car. Sure, the Elise is hot, it's loud, the stereo is useless, the roof leaks in the rain, the headlights are terrible and the body work is fragile. But nothing else delivers the same combination of lightweight, purity, exotica, efficiency, fun and affordability.

Having said all that, if anything were to happen to my Elise, I would very seriously consider replacing it with an Evora S simply for the fact that I've owned and enjoyed an Elise, and I think the Evora would be very enjoyable as well, the great dynamics and handling but with more comfort and usability.
Thank you so much for your detailed reply! Very helpful!
 

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Discussion Starter #9
If "always have little things wrong" takes away from your experience that much I'd almost rec not getting a Lotus at all. Heh.

But you should seriously drive one, they are freaking awesome and so I've totally insane if you super charge one.
Haha I know! I think it's a reality that I won't be able to full avoid with a Lotus. Just trying to figure out if the Elise is easier to fix, etc. since there are more of them. Or if the Evora is just going to be less likely to have issues, but when it does have issues they'll likely be more expensive.
 

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You need to drive both, but don't assume the Elise is anything like a Corvette. You will be surprised at how civilized and finished a Corvette is in comparison. I am not talking about power, but ambiance. The Evora is, as was said, more like a "real car."

It is possible to have a serviceable stereo in an Elise, but it requires quite a bit of effort, and it's not the components that require the effort. You will need to remove the entire interior, Dynamat everything you possibly can, stuff every corner with soundproofing, including inside the doors, put in a full carpet set (the kind that goes under the seats and up the sides of the tub) and then replace the speakers and head unit, which will require removing the dash. And make sure you have the touring top. Ask me how I know this...

Lotus did used to sell all the extra soundproofing parts and full carpets but doubt it's available anymore. If you can, cover all the dash parts with leather, too, as well as the side sills.
Dynamat etc easy to get. But even after all that, it's still extra thin glass, plastic and thin aluminum.
 

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I say take a test drive in a decent example of an Elise and you'll either love it or hate it. All it's perceived shortcomings will either melt away or become the reasons that the car isn't the one your looking for.
 

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Just to chime in here, the Elise's stereo is absolutely worthless. My car has an "upgraded" stereo and even that is not worth turning on. There is no way to enjoy or even hear music in this car. Between the engine roar, the road noise, and the crashing bumps (I'm in Michigan), there is far too much exterior noise to allow for music enjoyment.

Aside from the radio, my Elise is pretty much all stock and I enjoy it tremendously. It is plenty fast for me. I enjoy the insane handling far more than the acceleration, although it kicks in nicely when I need it to.
 

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This is one of the best reviews of an Elise I've ever seen:


He goes on to say the car has no creature comforts at all, no cup holders, not much storage and no real sense of rational logic.

But, there's a reason surgeons use a scalpel... no other tool can deliver the results.
 

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With a base non-supercharged Elise I find that I can listen to the stock radio. I also have a stock muffler.

I rented a Corvette once and it had more power and was more polished than an Elise.

The Elise was more fun though.

The best advice is to try to drive an Elise. Without driving one, you'll never be able to decide with any confidence.
 

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If you want the ultimate connection to the road and have a blast driving then get the Elise! It’s a gokart!!!!!! If you want comfort, plush experience get something else.
 

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Dreaming of Lotus
2005 Elise Sport Touring
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If you want the ultimate connection to the road and have a blast driving then get the Elise! It’s a gokart!!!!!! If you want comfort, plush experience get something else.
Ariel Atom has entered the chat
 

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Yes, absolutely hold out for the Evora. My 2015 Evora is fantastic, plush inside, and quiet enough inside for the stereo to sound good up until highway speeds. And even then, if you furn it up, it still sounds fine. It's comfortable, the seats are padded, the shock absorbers work well, and it has been reliable. I bought it new and put 15,000 miles on it, and it still is a thrill, and a comfortable thrill at that, every time I drive it.
 

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I’ve had an Elise, an Exige and an Evora S, and daily drive all three. The Evora is a better daily driver.
I also may be willing to sell my Evora S for a good price if you are interested in a high mileage white 2012.
 
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