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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I know such a topic is frequently talked about yet a recent thread with this topic being the main focus does not exist. I understand if this subject might be an annoyance to some of you but please leave it to serious discussion.

As we know, despite a low production number in order to create an artificial demand, Lotuses seem to have one of the highest depreciation rate in relation to all other exotics. Obviously it's due to the lack of the standard comfort people expect from modern cars.

But enough of that. With the expectation of the new model of the elise we should see a continuation of declining value, but will we ever see an appreciation? When do you think it'll occur and when will the used car prices bottom out?
 

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No Hope. But an awesome car and worth it. Not an investment. Your Car Is Not An Investment - And Neither Are Some Of the Other Things You’re Pretending Are - Personal Finance Advice

In five years you will see a lot of Lotus cars cheap enough for the street race kiddies to put giant wings, neon, and flares on them, ie, the Civic racer crowd.
And, since most of all Elise/Exiges that are going to be sold in the US HAVE already BEEN sold in the US, as those kids butcher the cars, an enthusiast owned car will at least hold its value in the eyes of someone who actually wants to own.

Of course they won't appreciate, but I think the current free fall is not at all indicative of the market should the economy turn around.

Folks buying cheap now are likely to hold onto their cars and not put them right back into the used market. Hopefully other owners are trying to hold on and not panic sell. If this is the case, then perhaps the market will stiffen up. Remember, there really is an extremely small pool of these cars in the country.

There is going to be a point where folks say "Wow, look how cheap Lotus' are. I'm going to go buy one!" Then when they start looking, especially for specific colors and options, and near where they live, they can't find one at the bargain price.

Some wind up here begging to buy cheap, admonishing current owners about how cheap they should be selling their cars for. Then they almost always add "I've been looking for 6 months for the car I want, I can pay cash, I can wait." Wonder why they've been looking 6 months for the car they want at the price they want. Could be while they may have tagged the $$$ market, they've missed the actual availability market.
 

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I believe all Lotus have the potential to appreciate in value.

Having said that I do not beleive anybody should ever buy any Lotus with an expectation of appreciation in value. The appreciation should be for the engineering elegance and performance.

For the current offerings from Lotus, Elise and Exige, owners expecting an appreciation of value will be waiting a long time. The reasons for this are multifactorial. The most obvious is that while exotic and collectable, they are essentially new cars and have to depreciate as all new cars do. In addition, Lotus has a history of continuing development. Each year the crop of cars from Lotus gets better and better, making the previous years issues less desirable. The introduction of the Evora and new Esprit will likely have an undesirable effect of the price of Elise/Exige as well as those who want a Lotus but feel that the higher specs of the newer cars fit their lifestyle more dump their Elise/Exige on the used market.

The rarity and exoticness of Lotus will eventually be in favor of eventual appreciation of all the Lotus ever made. At present all Lotus from the Historic and Classic eras (this includes all cars up to the transition from Elan/Europa to Elite/Esprit) are going up in value. Cortinas and Elans in particular are doing very well. Guigaro Esprits are starting to go up as well including S1 and S2's. M100 Elans have bottomed out already. I think this is due to the rarity of these cars. Stevens Esprits and early V8's are leveling out, but I suspect will drop further with the introduction of the Evora and new Esprit.

From a collectablility (and value) standpoint, originality is always desirable. Original Elans that are original spec are commanding far higher prices than those with modification. When the Elise and Exige become collectable I would expect the same for them. Not that that should prevent you from doing the whole aftermarket mod thing that seems to be SOP with most of the users of this forum. Anyone with a late model Lotus should be owning one for personal enjoyment rather than eventual collectablity. One kind of mod may increase value down the road in the collector market, however, is aftermarket accessories from Lotus itself.
 

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...short-term, i expect depreciation to continue decellerating and stablise somewhere around 20-25k, entirely dependent upon economic conditions and how desperate sellers become...longer-term, i think about two platform generations from now we'll begin seeing significant appreciation of the series two federal cars, eventually plateauing somewhere in the range of 30k, inflation-adjusted...

...my bank expects my car to appreciate by the time i've paid it off, but i think they're mistaken, especially in the current economic and technological climate...
 

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...my bank expects my car to appreciate by the time i've paid it off, but i think they're mistaken, especially in the current economic and technological climate...
your bank must not have read your sig.~68,000 miles. Just messin with ya, but if you had M cars like your name suggests, the bank must be happy it won't deppreciate like those cars have been.
 

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Look what's happening with automotive technologies. You have power steering, stability control, automatic braking, auto parking, hybrid powertrains for the near term and all-electric longer term, curtain airbags, tire pressure warning systems, satnav, etc. The Elise is really the last mass produced gasoline-powered true sports car. It has the fewest extas, and offers the best driving experience. In the future, no car will match its level of simplicity with a high output gasoline engine. This positions it well to be a collectible car someday, maybe 20-30 years? It represents the end of an era. Especially the 2005 models, as they featured a classic throttle cable arrangement instead of DBW.
 

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I wouldn't count on our cars being some sort of great investment anytime soon. I bought mine used at a great price two years ago (33k), as I wanted a low mile example (2k miles) that hadn't been wrecked or modded. If you bought new, then expect the depreciation as a by-product.

All of that being said, I do think that good, clean examples will get more scarce as the years go by. On the other hand, something else newer/faster/better will be out and who will want our cars? Who wants a series 1 Esprit right now? I don't see them climbing up in value, with the exception of the guy who bought the Bond car. Europas? Not worth the money it takes to restore one.

Just drive the car, keep it in good condition, and maybe some day you'll get a few bucks for it when you're done with it. Just my two cents....
 

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Considering the 05 Elises have been "hanging tough" right around 30k for almost two years now I think thats a good sign.
That's a very good sign! I sold my 2005 Elise in June 2007 for $32K (which I thought was a good deal at the time) and right now, if I decided to buy a 2005 Elise, I'd pay around $32K!

In retrospect, I could have keep the car for a few more months and then sell it for $32K! HAHAHAH! It took almost two years for sellers remorse to set in!
 

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I dont think lotus deprecate quickly: 05s deprecated from 47 ish k to 30ish k in 4 years

what is a 4 year old lexus, boxster or luxury suv sell for?

I think they will fall to about 20 k and stay there for a long time. If lotus continues the elise/exige tradition in the US they may fall further. If no super light/pure sports cars are available in the us for a number of years they will start to appreciate a bit, comparable to say a 93 supra turbo or 993 porsche
 

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All car values are in the crapper right now...since its apparently "the end of the world"...

I was told by more than one dealer that I was one of the very few actually willing to spend money right now...I just bought my 05(touring, starshield, hardtop) w/ 22k for 26,500.00...I figure the value will likely return to the ~30K mark once our economy comes out of the pooper. If it doesn't I really don't care...as I'll be keeping this car for quite some time (its been my dream car since I first saw the pics of them somewhere around 10yrs ago)

My 03 350z has 18k on the clock. I bought it 1.5yrs ago when it only had 3k on it. Its got every option except Navigation. and its trade in was about 22,000. I paid 20,000 from a private seller. Now its value has apparently fallen to where trade in is sub 15k...needless to say I'm keeping it for awhile too as its one heck of a "Grand touring" car and I can't replace it with anything I'd want for what the market thinks its worth.
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
In a financial perspective cars are not investments, they're simply depreciating assets, but as a car enthusiat it's an emotional investment.

Unlike other exotic sports cars the elise/exige are not price exclusive. I'm not saying that these cars are cheap but in relations to the msrps of other exotics they're affordable to the "average" person. I believe for this reason these cars will not see an appreciation of value.

There's a false sense of exclusivity with these cars. The marketing strategy of controlled production numbers is too apparent along with the lack of demand. If production numbers were lower in relation to the demand it would be a different story, I.e. Ferrari.

As lotus enthusiats and owners we were and are partially responsible for the resale values. Why have we always seen dealers selling used models for so much higher than what the private sector advertises for? Because they can sell it at those prices.

When selling anything, I normally advertise it at a higher price creating a buffet zone to allow me to get the price I originally desired. But I also let people know I'm willing to negotiate.
 

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Special interest car values seem to be driven by suppressed / deferred desire and bragging rights, hence the run up in 60s muscle cars especially the highest specifications. That is there is deferred desire for the basic car. Those with the financial means to achieve their dream car want the bragging rights conferred by the most elusive version of that basic car.

In order for Lotus cars to be run up in value they will need to be:
:bow: Well know to a sufficiently large segment of people who will eventually bid on them
:drool: Aspirational, financially out of reach but tempting to those people
:up: Socially acceptable within a class of people who can pay a high price

Lotus has been too little known and seemingly totally out of reach to many of those who know of them. Then later on they seem to be funny little cars without the stature of the many of the bigger more powerful cars. All this is not so good for Lotus but works out for people like me who can get great cars at bargain rates.
 

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they'll need to dominate F1 and have a marketing Juggernaut campaign like that company in Italy that makes a lot of red cars.
 

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Depreciation is just a cost to be accepted for the thrill. Anyone believing in Lotus appreciation of value is in the cards is misled imo. Want appreciation? Buy foreign stocks or precious metals. You can't 'enjoy them' though. A Lotus is better than cash in a bank account if that is any consolation. It is something, not just worthless Fiat paper.
 

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The Elise is really the last mass produced gasoline-powered true sports car. It has the fewest extas, and offers the best driving experience. In the future, no car will match its level of simplicity with a high output gasoline engine. This positions it well to be a collectible car someday, maybe 20-30 years? It represents the end of an era. Especially the 2005 models, as they featured a classic throttle cable arrangement instead of DBW.
...excellent point, and that's my own take on it as well, unless automatic systems become so compelling that the raw nature of our cars is perceived as a liability rather than an asset, just a jalopy more trouble than it's worth...
 

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Having just sold my 07 Exige S with 5k miles, I can attest that Lotus does not hold value. Perhaps 20 years from now....so just enjoy the car. Enjoyment is priceless.

All car values are in the crapper right now...since its apparently "the end of the world"...

I was told by more than one dealer that I was one of the very few actually willing to spend money right now...I just bought my 05(touring, starshield, hardtop) w/ 22k for 26,500.00...I figure the value will likely return to the ~30K mark once our economy comes out of the pooper. If it doesn't I really don't care...as I'll be keeping this car for quite some time (its been my dream car since I first saw the pics of them somewhere around 10yrs ago)

My 03 350z has 18k on the clock. I bought it 1.5yrs ago when it only had 3k on it. Its got every option except Navigation. and its trade in was about 22,000. I paid 20,000 from a private seller. Now its value has apparently fallen to where trade in is sub 15k...needless to say I'm keeping it for awhile too as its one heck of a "Grand touring" car and I can't replace it with anything I'd want for what the market thinks its worth.
 
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