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Such Moderate
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Did you have marks on the clam from the cones?!?

Man, as fragile as the clams are, I'd be worried about a cone putting a crack in the front clam if you hit one just right.
 

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No marks or anything. There is starshield and those plastic scuff plates that someone made a while ago that are on the front of the clam as well. Wouldn't be worried about it on a hot summer day, but like someone else said, on a cold morning it may cause issues.

Get the SC!
 

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As a new owner I have been doing quite a bit of reading and video watching. I have seen many videos of Elise's loosing rear traction and spinning at the track with virtually no apparent warning, and for what appears to be no apparent reason.

Reference this video, fast forward to the end and there is another spin out of an elise for no apparent reason?

Lotus Elise at NJ Motorsports Park Lightning racetrack September 2011 - YouTube

Based on the number of videos like this I have seen, and the amount of similar spin outs, not to mention the good amount of salvage rebuilds of this car, what is the story?
I knew exactly when he was about to go around -eek- I could feel it happening
 

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I'd guess 95% of the salvage titles are from no-fault collisions on the street.

As for the crash in the first video (I can add nothing to others' comments) that is
a well known spin area. I've driven this course a number of times and seen
a few cars spin in the exact same spot.
As everyone else has said: never lift when cresting.
 

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Happy almost 2016 everyone! I have compiled the second installment of ISpinUWin. More examples! ;) I simply wanted to make an update to my original post in this thread post 24, on page 2.

The Motherload of Spin - ISpinUWin #2
I thought it would be fun to compile all of the in-car video of track spins or saves that my wife or I have been a part of or witnessed from 2013-2015 (mostly from 2008+ in our '08 Lotus Exige-S 240). Be sure to also watch the original ISpinUWin!

 

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I cant say this method would be for everyone but, if you can afford it. Buy a cheap drift car (240sx, RX7 FC, Miata, or e30/e36) and attend some local drift events such as skid pads or track events. Even auto-x so long as you dont hit the cones they usually dont care. It helps immensely with quick hands and correcting oversteer even a bit with understeer. I know they are all front engine RWD but it helps with the technique. You could also spring for an MR2 to beat the piss out of drifting. My first season of Auto-x done with the Exige and I have not spun it. I have gotten it very sideways and slid side to side through a few corners in the rain without spinning. Its a feel and technique that can only be learned through experience. Better to do that in a car thats not worth much.
 

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To give more over steer the Lotus Performance Driving course used to swap the front and rear wheels. They had a spin bottle (spin the car owe a quid) I fed the bottle. It was far from empty.
 

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shay2nak
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wow, the Nurbur video...you can see the black M3 coupe tap the white Exige causing him to lose control. WTF
 

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I cant say this method would be for everyone but, if you can afford it. Buy a cheap drift car (240sx, RX7 FC, Miata, or e30/e36) and attend some local drift events such as skid pads or track events.
Great advice! In college I had a 240sx(and a FC!), and without going into specifics, I lived near some large industrial parks that were empty at night. Drifting is likely the quickest way to learn car control. Granted a 240sx can lazily hang the tail out all day, in the lotus things happen much quicker :D


For good measure, here's me spinning at Blackhawk farms. Combination of going in way too hot, and R888's getting greasy taking a couple laps of hard abuse from me trying desperately to keep up with that damn Shelby mustang!

 

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That was a nice controlled spin though, watching it, it sounded like you came off the the throttle right before the corner out of the chicane.
 

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I’ve driven a lot of track cars over many years. I’ve been driving an Elise for about 6 years, mostly on the track. I’ve spun it a number of times over the years and I was convinced it was spin-prone. This year, I got my HPDE instructor qualification and I spent 11+ days in my lotus on the track trying to constantly improve lap times. (Free track time is your pay for sitting in the right seat with someone you just met who thinks they can drive fast, but that’s a whole other story.) What I have found is similar to what a number of other folks have stated. The Lotus is very precise and reacts very quickly to inputs. Lightness, weight balance, rotational inertia, sensitivity to front/rear balance are all factors. If you are driving at 80%, no problem. As you approach the limit of the tires, things happen much more quickly than in many other cars. The time between feeling the car react and making a correction is quite compressed. Most of us simply don’t have quick enough reactions to “catch” the skid before it becomes a spin. Most drivers are not really comfortable in a skid and do everything to avoid it. If you drive the limit of the car, you drive the limit of the tires. At that point, you are controlling a skid throughout much of the turn. If you invoke the skid, then you control it rather than having to react to it. (There is a limit to this slip angle if you are looking for speed). Do that enough and your reactions become extremely quick. The result....spins become very rare. My advice...never pass up an opportunity to drive sideways, especially on a skid pad where things happen fast. Do it often, as these skill erode with time. Keep your head and eyes up and focused where you want to go. The farther ahead you look, the faster the ocular response to a skid. And as many others have said, make a smooth and deliberate weight transfer from the front of the car to the rear to “set” the balance in every turn and never “lift” in a way that significantly effects that balance. And lastly, if you make that ultimate mistake, know when to go “all in”. It’s the safest option in most every case once the skid passes 90 degrees. Now, go have fun!
 

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He's on fire!
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I have never considered the elise spin prone, and I'm not any gifted individual. My inclination for those that do is to look into these areas:

1. The nut behind the wheel: if you haven't had much experience with a mid engine car, do a few autocrosses or a track day (with instruction). If you're not comfortable with loading the rear outer tire through a corner you'll probably consider the elise spin prone.
2. Vehicle setup: Was your vehicle recently aligned and corner balanced to factory spec? Most have to dial in a lot of extra camber up front to get the car to rotate. Poor suspension setup (due to age or just being wrong)
3. Tires: Running mixed tires or all seasons

Special exception: Turns that are off camber or that crest in the middle end up being great places to end up facing the wrong way if you're not paying attention.
 

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I was a bit fatigued this day. I like to get the rear set for the corner by lifting for a bit, then getting right back on.
I didn't get back on fast enough, and almost spun. I needed quick full opposite lock to save it.

 
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