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Hey everyone-

This is my first post here; I was hoping to learn more about the Elise and get some feedback. I am thinking of selling my E46 M3 to buy an Elise, or trying to trade for one. I've been an instructor for various driving schools and have had a couple opportunities to ride in students' Elise's. I absolutely fell in love with these cars and was wondering if you guys had any advice or feedback you'd be willing to share. Obviously, I'm well aware it would be a completely different driving experience from the M3. But that's what I'm after... A true to form 'sports car' as opposed to a more cushy, refined coupe. This would be a weekend driver for me, as I already have a dedicated track car, but I was curious just how many of you felt the car was comfortable enough for non-track use on a regular basis... Thanks in advance-
 

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Renaissanceman,

Lotus as I'm sured you've gathered, is a wonderful track car and although this is were it's at home, you'll find that the majority of folks here use it as a daily driver. Either way, you won't want to stop driving it...and that's the bad thing about this :evil:
 

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Well, I made this exact move 1 month ago....sold my '05 E46 M3 and picked up the Elise...never looked back!
I never had a chance to track the M3, but it was my daily driver and did some "spirited driving."

The Elise is in a different league as you know - no other car feels as connected to the road both on the streets and on the track.
The M3 felt like a comfortable boat when compared to the Elise.

I use the Elise as a daily and I track it...but sounds like you already have a track car...you may be sub'g in your Elise to track as well...get it!
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Well, I made this exact move 1 month ago....sold my '05 E46 M3 and picked up the Elise...never looked back!
I never had a chance to track the M3, but it was my daily driver and did some "spirited driving."

The Elise is in a different league as you know - no other car feels as connected to the road both on the streets and on the track.
The M3 felt like a comfortable boat when compared to the Elise.

I use the Elise as a daily and I track it...but sounds like you already have a track car...you may be sub'g in your Elise to track as well...get it!
Very cool to hear you took this path... At this point, do you miss anything about the M3? What at this point of ownership would you all say are the 'downsides' to daily'ing the Elise? Obviously getting in and out of it is more challenging, but are there any other qualities that leave much to be desired?

Thanks for the replies so far,

Adam in TN
 

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I had an e46 m3 a couple cars ago and I do miss the back seat, the rasp (believe it or not), and also I was a lot more comfortable getting that car side ways. It's real close to the same straight line speed (the NA) in case you're already bored with mid 13's quarter but the handling is unreal- well compared to the M3 anyway. I do remember being able to break the tires loose in 3rd gear in the M3 which will not happen stock in an elise in a straight.
 

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I had an e46 m3 a couple cars ago and I do miss the back seat, the rasp (believe it or not), and also I was a lot more comfortable getting that car side ways. It's real close to the same straight line speed (the NA) in case you're already bored with mid 13's quarter but the handling is unreal- well compared to the M3 anyway. I do remember being able to break the tires loose in 3rd gear in the M3 which will not happen stock in an elise in a straight.
Yeah, it's hard to beat the M3 as a great all-around performance coupe with a level of practically built in. I've had a chance to also instruct some students with gutted-out, more track prepped versions of the E46 M3, as well and they felt totally different from mine with all the the shed weight. I've just been lusting after the Elise for a while, though. :D
 

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Very cool to hear you took this path... At this point, do you miss anything about the M3? What at this point of ownership would you all say are the 'downsides' to daily'ing the Elise? Obviously getting in and out of it is more challenging, but are there any other qualities that leave much to be desired?

Thanks for the replies so far,

Adam in TN
Well, I first went from the M3 to the M6, and then got the Lotus...all different ride styles...but I will say that I don't miss the M3 one bit. However, I never got to track the M3 - that I regret...

As far as a daily - I drive it to work on a 20 mile commute on the hwy, and then I take it to the track on the wknds. The A/C is mediocre, and the sound system sucks. But I absolutely love dailying this car - much more so than the M6. For me, it's the pure joy of "driving." As you know how responsive the Lotus is, it is so enjoyable driving it that I could care less about the radio and a/c.
Sure there are some comfort creatures you miss regarding the "M" cars...but I would much rather "drive" my Elise over my M6...hands down.
(but take this from a recently addicted track addict...)
 

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I traded my M3 for the Elise in 2006. As a streetable track car the Elise is in it's own class. No comparison. However, FOR ME, the M3 was a superior weekend and daily driver with great handling and comfort. The Elise is quite uncomfortable in every way as a daily driver. I use it only for track days and I would say I do miss my M3 at times (though I recently replaced it with a 360!)
 

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I traded my M3 for the Elise in 2006. As a streetable track car the Elise is in it's own class. No comparison. However, FOR ME, the M3 was a superior weekend and daily driver with great handling and comfort. The Elise is quite uncomfortable in every way as a daily driver. I use it only for track days and I would say I do miss my M3 at times (though I recently replaced it with a 360!)
I do agree with the above statement...but the lack of "luxuries" does not bother me in the Elise. I guess the best way to put it is that when I drive the Elise I'm concentrating on driving and having fun; whereas, in the M3 I did some spirited driving, but occasionally zoned out while driving as it is not as connected to the road.

I'd take the 360 any day....and track it!
 
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