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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
Hi everyone. I have never owned a lotus and have only driven an Elise once. but I love the car, every thing about it. I'm looking to buy an elise, only problem is that I really don't know anything about them passed what you can find on wikipedia or what have you. I'm mostly looking at 2005 models because of price

What are things to watch out for when buying?

were there any significant changes with the different models (reliability, drive train, handling, quirky issues and what not)

Would you ever buy a salvage title?

Or just anything you feel is good to know

What are decent prices I can expect to pay for a stock decent/excellent condition?
 

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Well click Forums at the top of the website, then scroll down to for sale and you will find Lotuses for sale. In all honesty if I were you I would wait until winter time to pull the trigger because prices fluctuate seasonly and you might save a few thousand dollars by waiting until November-February. Depending on where you live it may be hard to find a good used elise for a low price with the options you want on it. If you live somewhere like California it shouldn't be hard though. You may have to travel to get just the right one, many people on here have waited months to find the exact car they want, but they often have to travel to see/purchase the car. I would buy from a private party obviously since price concerns you, with a dealer you will pay much more. It's better to buy a Lotus where the previous members have been regulars on Lotustalk. I always suggest planning on having the car inspected by a mechanic before you purchase it as well. I don't really know what to look out for mechanically since I don't own a Lotus myself, just been hovering for a while. I'm waiting on a Red 2007 Lotus Exige S...
Also make sure your driveway isn't to steep since this car is relatively low. I would never buy a salvage title just to save a few thousand.. it's just not worth it unless you know EXACTLY what you are doing.
 

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We are sort of in the same boat. I have looked into getting an Elise or Exige vs. something else. What I found out was that there is/was a recall on '05-early 07's? for oil lines. A bad crimping design leads virtually all cars to leak, eventually. Lotus reluctantly issued a recall notice about 1 year ago or more but then said they weren't prepared to actually fix the cars so people were waiting around wondering when their cars would be fixed. That is where I left off about 6 months ago. I just sold one of my other cars so am now back to see where things are with the recall.

Another thing, if you plan to track the cars, the oil pan design can lead to rod bearing failure. I think this is mainly on left turns.

Also, the fragile nature of the cars mean that street parking risks someone bumping into you and cracking your $6k clam, front or rear.

I have not ruled these cars out so they are on my shortlist. I'm on here tonight for my periodic check to see how the oil line recall is going......

does anyone have the latest news on the recall?
 

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Discussion Starter #4
I'm currently stationed in west texas, but I have family in southern California. I have no plans to track the car, race it, or any none sense like that.
 

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Hi everyone. I have never owned a lotus and have only driven an Elise once. but I love the car, every thing about it. I'm looking to buy an elise, only problem is that I really don't know anything about them passed what you can find on wikipedia or what have you. I'm mostly looking at 2005 models because of price

What are things to watch out for when buying? Just about the same things as buying any used car. You can always ask a local forum member to check out of area cars for you also ;)

were there any significant changes with the different models (reliability, drive train, handling, quirky issues and what not) there were a few small changes between 06 and 07 to the headlights (non-sealed vs sealed beam), "bumperettes" that were added to the 101st and beyond 2007 models, but as far as handling and other listed items above.... nope.

Would you ever buy a salvage title? :popcorn:

Or just anything you feel is good to know
Start here: http://www.lotustalk.com/forums/f115/uberpost-read-here-there-information-uberthread-25131/
 

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If you're not going to track the car you are doing it a disservice!
Salvage is fine IMO - these cars are relatively easy/cheap to fix.
Let's say some one backs into you, S111 sells a front clam for around $1500.
Let's say you blow the top end motor, $2k to replace.
These cars are also pretty easy to sell, even if salvage titled.


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We are sort of in the same boat. I have looked into getting an Elise or Exige vs. something else. What I found out was that there is/was a recall on '05-early 07's? for oil lines. A bad crimping design leads virtually all cars to leak, eventually. Lotus reluctantly issued a recall notice about 1 year ago or more but then said they weren't prepared to actually fix the cars so people were waiting around wondering when their cars would be fixed. That is where I left off about 6 months ago. I just sold one of my other cars so am now back to see where things are with the recall.

Another thing, if you plan to track the cars, the oil pan design can lead to rod bearing failure. I think this is mainly on left turns.

Also, the fragile nature of the cars mean that street parking risks someone bumping into you and cracking your $6k clam, front or rear.

I have not ruled these cars out so they are on my shortlist. I'm on here tonight for my periodic check to see how the oil line recall is going......

does anyone have the latest news on the recall?
Why not just get the oil lines checked and fixed yourself at a dealer or mechanic? Why wait for recall news? It doesn't seem like an expensive fix.
 

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There is an oil line recall fix. Letters are going to owners in January. Search the forums and you will find all the details including the dealer instructions.


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You can also spend about $10 at a Toyota dealer to do the sandwich delete mod. I've done this, taking the oil lines out of the equation entirely.

Go into the maint section and look into engine lubrication. Read all you can stand. There are a number of fixes available for the oil line problem, from replacing the crimps yourself, through replacing the lines entirely to doing a rear oil cooler with new lines to deleting the cooler altogether.

Read all around Lotus Talk. I did before buying my Elise a bit over a year ago. You get a flavor for what the car is, what's good/bad about them and learn if you are the kind of person to get along with one. I get along really well with mine.
 
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