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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Several years ago (2011/2012), I was preparing to get an Elise/Exige. I had done all of my research, and I realized that it was the only car I desired within my price range. I was ready for the overwhelming attention I would get at every gas station and the visceral driving experience. I had a financial set back, and I settled for a less expensive LS3 C6 Corvette. It was a wonderful car, zero maintenance, incredible acceleration and great appearance. The v8 sound and get-up from that right pedal is intoxicating. The Corvette made perfect sense, and I had a GM certified mechanic best friend to circumvent the dealership visits if any. Parts and maintenance are way too reasonable for a car of that performance. However, the interior absolutely sucked, and you see several of them everyday. Sometimes, I can't quite help but think the car isn't allowing the driver to be fully in touch with the road. On top of that, the car lacked a truly unique aesthetic even after customizing it.

I sold that 2009 Vette, to afford to go on an epic honeymoon with my wife. After several months, I was desiring a sports car again, and we were in a position to pick up another car. I chose a 2007 Vette, basically the same exact car with a LS2 and even cheaper than before. Slightly less power, but 99% the same experience. I've enjoyed this car as well, but it fails to evoke passion. It isn't a head turner, nor is it unique. Several weeks ago, I took my car to the drag strip to see how it and I performed. I nearly took it into a wall as I crossed the quarter mile line, and at that moment I realized horsepower really meant nothing to me. It scared me even… Obviously, having pined over an Elige for years, I knew power wasn't the car's forte, and that handling/steering was the true god. So, I've realigned my car priorities, and I'm in a position to acquire a Lotus.

I can't convince my wife to let me get an Elige as they are too radical looking and not sophisticated enough from an outward design perspective. I've tried pushing the "adding lightness", "zero compromise", and "purpose built" arguments, but I can't win. She agrees with the principles, but she finds the execution in the Elige to be a failure of exterior design. I hadn't considered an Evora at this point, but my wife asked if there were other Lotus vehicles out there. I showed her photos, and she was blown away that the same company built these cars next to Eliges. So I've got wife approval which tends to be the biggest hurdle, and I have done some initial research.


A few presuppositions before my questions:
1. I am absolutely ok with a NA Evora as opposed to an Evora S. Having come down from the horsepower pedestal, I would be absolutely fine with a non-supercharged car. It would also put less pressure on getting some additional funds to track down a S versus NA.
2. Evora 2+0 versus 2+2. I do not have a preference on this unless someone has an anecdote about the usefulness of that back seat versus the 2+0.
3. I will be DDing this car. So if the supercharged cars need special consistent maintenance versus the NA's, I would probably rule them out of the equation.

My questions are:

1. Is there any hope of fitting an adult in the back of this car once in a while?

2. Clutch wear. I don't intend to drive this thing very hard. Very rarely do I launch my cars hard. Seeing as how I don't do burnouts or race from stop lights, can I expect my clutch to last more than 50K miles? I'm reading stories about owners replacing their clutch after 30k, 40k, even 60k miles worries me a little bit. I'm coming from Corvettes, whose clutches last 100-150K miles if treated properly. My primary concern isn't clutch replacement, as it is the cost of clam removal/pulling the engine. Are clutches failing because of defect/faulty manufacturing or are they failing because they are poorly engineered? Also, do supercharged cars have a beefier clutch?

3. Other than clutch issues, are there any things that have stopped owners from driving their cars as DD? If I get a 2010 with a funny dash that might need attention from a dealership, that won't stop me from driving the damn car. However, an electrical issue with the battery draining or overheating clutch fluid might give me second thoughts.

4. I live in Memphis, and my closest Lotus dealership is in St. Louis. Should this worry a prospective Evora owner? I understand having a solid relationship with a dealership and a car under warranty can alleviate the some of the strains of Lotus ownership. Would this be a deal breaker for someone who will be purchasing an older model year Evora ('10 or '11… a high mileage '12)? I understand the earlier cars have a few kinks that need to be worked out with the dealership (oil lines for S, dashes for '10s, a few electrical issues, and clutch replacement). If I buy a used car that has some of these warranty issues already resolved, can one expect to lean less on the dealership?

5. Coming off of the question of warranty work and early Evora issues, would a 'Chinese Evora' be a good bet at this point?

6. Resale value. With cars that are dipping into the 40-50K price range, can we assume they are starting to level out or will there continue to be an accelerated price drop into the upper 30's? I ask this as both a buyer and a potential seller in a few years as well.

I appreciate your patience and thank you for listening to/answering my questions. I know I could have tacked on these questions to preexisting threads, but I didn't want to revive those threads. With the initials cars having been around for around 4 years now, I would also think there might be a new holistic approach to Evora ownership and maybe some more generalized comments from former Corvette owners that have made the leap into Lotus land. If everything works out, I hope to join your ranks soon!
 

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1) Around the block; yes, if the pax is willing to compromise. On a regular commute or long distance trip: only if he's a real masochist (whip him before with a cat-o-nine-tails to verify:D).
2) If the car has more than about 15.000 mile don't worry about the clutch. They either failed early or last just as long as in any other car.
3) I'me getting on 40 K miles as a daily driver and had only one breakdown. The Evora is as solid as any other car. However, I wouldn't buy a car with a "funny dash" until that is fixed! The dash is intrically connected with the engine ECU and the electrical systems - whatever the issue it could be either a loose wire or a major fault.
4) Proximity to a dealer is a valid consideration, all Lotus ripen with the customer and a good relationship to the dealer is an asset.
5) The Chinese Evoras are a good choice as they have a full warranty. That justifies a premium.
6) I'm pretty sure prices are reaching a natural bottom.
 

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Go drive one and the questions dissolve.
 

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I think I can help answer some:
1. Yes for an emergency short drive, a small adult would fit. Someone in this forum had mentioned that he was able to fit 5 people in his car - not sure how. But if you plan to have kids, I suggest the 2+2.
2. My car is too new and I don't have experience here
3. I think if you DD than you don't have to worry about the battery draining. Most Lotus owners have more than 1 cars and the lotus sit in the garage - so the batter issue. If you planning to track the car, then you need to upgrade all the fluids.
4. There is also a Lotus dealer in Atlanta, GA
5. Yes, go for the "Chinese" if you can find one.
6. The price range for the Evora is all over the place depending on conditions, options, and colors. I good search will fine you a good deal.

I didn't buy a Corvette or Porches because of the same reasons you had mentioned. You should show your wife this national geographic video:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wsw4SdUVtb4

This is fun test drive video with 2 small adults girls in the back:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MjKGWSez0bs

Btw, had you or your wife seen an Elise or even an Evora in person? The pictures really don’t justify the beauty of these cars.
 

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For all the talk about clutch failures, I think there have only been a handful of owners who actually had an issue. I also believe all of those issues were covered under warranty.
I've had four adults in the 2+2 for about an hour. It's certainly not comfortable for the people in the back seat or the front seat, but it is doable.
 

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Go drive one and the questions dissolve.
^^^ THIS ^^^

Once you drive one, nothing else will do. Aside from that, mine has been great & I daily drive it. I need to get it to the dealer for some warranty work on some minor trim pieces, but I just can't stand the thought of being without it. It's been to the dealer only once...for the first oil change, & I bought the car new in June of 2013. Looks like you've done your homework!
 

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Hope to see you Saturday at Cars and Coffee - I'll have my Evora there!

1. Not really. Unless they have no legs or are under 3 ft tall. They can sit sideways maybe for a short trip at best.
2. My car has 14K miles and clutch seems fine. No issues. But who knows? I bought the car knowing it could run me $5-6 thousand dollars to replace the clutch. (Or actually WILL - just a matter of how long it will last). I'm prepared should it happen and happy if it doesn't. I decided that owning the car (or any rare exotic) requires a certain mindset. Be prepared for the worst and when it doesn't happen you'll enjoy it even more. If it does, you are ready. :)
3. Seems like a lot of people daily drive their cars. I don't, but definitely think it can be a DD. Again, things happen. Right after I got mine I changed ALL of the fluids, filters, insulated the clutch line, etc. Already I have a list of items that need to fixed at it's last warranty stop which will be St. Louis. Mine is a 2011. Items needing attention:
- Passenger door latch doesn't unlock reliably. And it rattles horribly. Sometimes the door latch on the outside passenger door doesn't want to open.
- passenger A pillar trim is cracked.
- There is a "click" in the steering wheel - it wiggles just A LITTLE bit no matter how tight the tilt wheel lever is. Supposedly this is a known issue, there is a TSB on it and an easy fix with a bushing.
- trim around my rear tail lights is peeling (has peeled).
- windshield washer light on dash flickers. And the reservoir is full.
- Phone doesn't always pair up to the stereo.

None of these things really take away the enjoyment of the car - your level of satisfaction may be different. It's a hand built car from a very small car company in England. It will have issues of some sort.

4. Lack of a dealership was a big jump for me. Again, I made the decision that having to drive or ship the car to St. Louis for repairs was something I could live with. I will be driving it to St. Louis in October to get all of the above remedied. I'll drop it off, rent a car and drive home, then go back to pick it up when it's ready. Not convenient. But it is what it is. I do all my basic maintenance myself so I'm not worried about things likes brakes, filters, oil/fluid changes, etc. The Toyota drive train swayed me as well - basic parts are pretty easy to get at Autozone. There is also a place here in Memphis that works on exotics - kcsexotic.com. I have NO experience with them and have no idea if they do Lotus, but it is an option I guess.

5. Chinese Evora would be nice, IF there are any left and IF it is the color you want. To me, the price for those was around $54 or $55K and the color choices were not what I wanted when I was looking. I bought my 2011 for under $50K and it had 14K miles and 5 months of warranty left. Another thought is a car with 14K miles or so will (SHOULD) have had a lot of the little things fixed already - dashes, latches, slave cylinders, etc. You get a new one and find yourself going to the dealer every 6 months to drop the car off.... Some people have had GREAT luck and zero issues, some have had more than others. Pick what you are comfortable with and can live with.

6. No idea. But I am hoping it stays in the $40s to high $30's at worst. :)

James
 

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I know people DD their Evoras....but I imagine those that do live close to a dealership.

I assume your very opinionated wife ;) has a car so .....could you get by sharing that while yours is being worked on while you transport yours 4 hrs away?

Just my opinion but Loti seem like a great second/third car....

I spend a TON of time pondering the resale.......only because I am trying to talk myself into waiting, and darn it I want one NOW!!!

How many non-Lotus dealers have any idea how much a clutch will cost them? How will non-enthusiast owners react to being told a clutch will cost them app $5K.

I really have no idea but I am going to be lurking and lusting and ready to POUNCE :shift:

good luck and YOLO
 

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I do not DD my Evora nor would I. It is a fun car but I really think it fits well in the weekend cruze and date night type car rather than take me to work every day type car. I could DD it but I DD my Jeep Wrangler instead if that tells you anything.
 

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Not driving the Evora as a DD is like dating the ugly girl 5 days a week because you're worried that gorgeous girl you have great sex with on the weekend might wear out. :facepalm
 

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Not driving the Evora as a DD is like dating the ugly girl 5 days a week because you're worried that gorgeous girl you have great sex with on the weekend might wear out. :facepalm

What he said. By the way, she's not getting any younger.........so saving her for later,........:scratchhead:

I was 5 minutes from a dealership. Now its 75minutes but it doesn't matter because once the little warranty niggles are addressed, she just runs....one might say she likes being ridden hard. HUMMMM!
 

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Not driving the Evora as a DD is like dating the ugly girl 5 days a week because you're worried that gorgeous girl you have great sex with on the weekend might wear out. :facepalm
over here the gorgeous girls are all MUCH higher maintenance than the intelligent ones who are often more fun in bed :cool:

guess the Mormon's have it all figured out....
 

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Not driving the Evora as a DD is like dating the ugly girl 5 days a week because you're worried that gorgeous girl you have great sex with on the weekend might wear out. :facepalm
what he said :D

But I do not daily drive mine. I would rather have it clean all the time. Make more of an impact to me and others when it gets used a little more sparingly.
I also have a MiniCooper S and a Jeep Wrangler, so I let all my cars have fun.:up:

Do not worry about the clutch. It should be as good as any other car.

St. Louis is where I have my service done and where I purchase my car. I would not call it great but it is improving. they have a new Lotus service manager and the Lambo Tech took over the Lotus service (The original Lotus tech was poor at best). My last experience was improved over previous visits, but they still managed to brake my interior door pull :facepalm
 

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So there really is something to the line "SHE KNEW THINGS"
 

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Maybe that former Lotus tech was originally from England and ended up living next to the Budweiser plant.
 

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Not daily driving mine is a couple of things, but it's not because I'm "saving it."

- when the weather is bad here in Memphis, the drivers become even more careless and in a hurry. Rear-enders happen ALL THE TIME in the rain - it's not uncommon to see 4-5 cars all smashed together at a light or on the freeway. I'd rather not risk getting hit from behind in the rain and having the car in the shop for months waiting on parts.

- I have a convertible M3 that is a blast to drive too, and a Nissan cube that doubles as my truck to haul stuff. When the weather sucks, the cube is the car of choice. Cheap to drive and repair, or if totaled, no great loss.
 

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37k + miles of daily driving mine with a very loud exhaust. I have zero complaints about the car. It has been more than I ever expected.
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
Well folks, I met up with James at Cars & Coffee to check out his Aquamarine Evora. It was definitely beautiful, and it basically sealed the deal for my wife and I. The most surprising reaction was that my wife loved the Plack exhaust... With her being a woman of refined tastes, always seeking the subtle and understated elegance, it totally blew me away that she found the roar of the straight pipe to be awesome.

So I left Cars and Coffee, and about 30 minutes later I found a 2010 NA Phantom Black with Cocobolo interior. I've put a deposit on it today, and it should be in the garage by next week. As soon as it arrives, I will ordering a Plack exhaust, a must have. I love the LS7 exhaust on my C6, and the Plack exhaust will certainly satiate my desire for a visceral sound experience. Thank you all for the input and answers, and I am glad to finally be apart of the Lotus community!
 
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