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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
When you consider the small market of Canada and the even smaller market for a niche vehicle like the Elise/Exige it seems like a waste of money and time for Canadian dealers to invest in the Lotus cars?!

Does this make sense or am I on crack.
 

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Discussion Starter #4 (Edited)
^^^^Okay maybe I used the wrong word, I meant dealership

What would Lotus have to say about whether Canadians can bring US cars across the border into Canada?
It seems like Lotus, artificially, created the scenario so that the Elise / Exige would not be allowed to be imported into Canada to protect the Canadian market. Because if U.S. cars where allowed to be imported, the Canadian market would almost be nonexistent.
 

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Uh.... Okay I've hardly ever been out of Texas, but it's pretty logical to assume that the restriction is based on Canadian law, not on the policy of a British manufacturing company.

xtn
 

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Uh.... Okay I've hardly ever been out of Texas, but it's pretty logical to assume that the restriction is based on Canadian law, not on the policy of a British manufacturing company.

xtn
That's not usually the case though.

It's usually the manufacturer that certifies compliance. Remember the Yugo seat belt recall?
 

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Hahaha xtn

Lotus had been established in Canada for a while before the Elise or Exige. The 90 Elises that were alloted between the three dealerships for 06 were called for well before pricing was even announced, so Canada got a lot more for 07, hence the piles of them at a certain dealer.

At least 100 cars a year seems to be worthwhile, no?
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Uh.... Okay I've hardly ever been out of Texas, but it's pretty logical to assume that the restriction is based on Canadian law, not on the policy of a British manufacturing company.

xtn
The reason, I've heard / read, that Elise / Exige can not be imported because of the clutch switch and the bumper height. But the Canadian and American cars look exactly the same (correct me if I'm wrong). Those seem like pretty weak excuses.

I'm just wondering if it would be in Lotus' better interest to just not open any dealerships in Canada and allow us to import them from the U.S.
 

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I doubt it.

Actually I suspect that if there were no Canadian dealers Canada wouldn't get the Elise at all.
Reasoning goes like this:
The US Elise does not meet all the safety regulations, it has waivers for at least the airbags and possibly others (Bumpers still?).
The justification that Lotus gave for those waivers is that it wasn't economically viable to satisfy them and if the couldn't get a waiver then they would have no cars to sell and all their dealerships would close.

I'm guessing they used the same argument in Canada. If they didn't have any dealerships what could they put on their waiver request? Pretty please?
 

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I was making the point that Lotus probably does NOT specifically set out to prevent USA cars from making it into Canada. They just do the best they can to be able to sell cars where they want to sell them. They have to work within the laws of the importing countries.
 

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I was making the point that Lotus probably does NOT specifically set out to prevent USA cars from making it into Canada. They just do the best they can to be able to sell cars where they want to sell them. They have to work within the laws of the importing countries.
Can't speak for Lotus, but several other manufacturers do precisely this despite no or minimal differences in the models sold here and abroad.
 

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Discussion Starter #12
I was making the point that Lotus probably does NOT specifically set out to prevent USA cars from making it into Canada. They just do the best they can to be able to sell cars where they want to sell them. They have to work within the laws of the importing countries.
I don't know? Maybe they got pressure from the Canadian dealers.
 

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That and if we had to import them where would we get service and warrenty fixes it could be a mighty long trek if ur car has some serious problems. Don't forget Canada has different Motorvehicle laws like we have to have Daytime Running lights for instance, that and we like 2 pay alot more for the same product... :p
 

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Actually I suspect that if there were no Canadian dealers Canada wouldn't get the Elise at all.
Most likely.


Reasoning goes like this:
The US Elise does not meet all the safety regulations, it has waivers for at least the airbags and possibly others (Bumpers still?).
The justification that Lotus gave for those waivers is that it wasn't economically viable to satisfy them and if the couldn't get a waiver then they would have no cars to sell and all their dealerships would close.
The Elise had waivers for headlights and bumpers - the headlights were "Euro spec" and not sealed, and the bumpers did not meet the 2.5 MPH impact requirements. The waivers were granted for a couple of years until Lotus could meet the regulations. They modified the cars for sealed headlights for the '07 model, and cleverly interpreted the rules to cover the bumper requirements. The current cars meet all US safety and emission laws.

I'm guessing they used the same argument in Canada. If they didn't have any dealerships what could they put on their waiver request? Pretty please?
To meet Canadian regulations, Lotus added two things - the DRL (low beam head lights on with the ignition) on all US and Canadian cars, and the clutch interlock switch (the wiring is there for it in the US cars, they just don't install the switch).

The reason that cars can't be imported to Canada is that they have to be on the list of allowed cars. Apparently, the dealer network lobbied to exclude US spec cars from that list. The manufacturers have little control on dealer/importer lobbying efforts. As a matter of fact, it's in Lotus' interest to support them. Besides having the cars for sale in Canada, Lotus has to have a dealer network that can support warranty and after sales service. It's not in anyone's interest to have cars that can't be supported in the local economy - the government is certainly not going to allow it since it would be hard/impossible for owners to maintain their cars (at least from an emission/safety point of view).
 

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Most likely.


The Elise had waivers for headlights and bumpers - the headlights were "Euro spec" and not sealed, and the bumpers did not meet the 2.5 MPH impact requirements. The waivers were granted for a couple of years until Lotus could meet the regulations. They modified the cars for sealed headlights for the '07 model, and cleverly interpreted the rules to cover the bumper requirements. The current cars meet all US safety and emission laws.
I thought they had to get a new waiver for the non-two stage airbag for 08?
 

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Discussion Starter #16
cd4age said:
That and if we had to import them where would we get service and warrenty fixes it could be a mighty long trek if ur car has some serious problems. Don't forget Canada has different Motorvehicle laws like we have to have Daytime Running lights for instance, that and we like 2 pay alot more for the same product...
hahahahahahaha...


Most likely.


The Elise had waivers for headlights and bumpers - the headlights were "Euro spec" and not sealed, and the bumpers did not meet the 2.5 MPH impact requirements. The waivers were granted for a couple of years until Lotus could meet the regulations. They modified the cars for sealed headlights for the '07 model, and cleverly interpreted the rules to cover the bumper requirements. The current cars meet all US safety and emission laws.

To meet Canadian regulations, Lotus added two things - the DRL (low beam head lights on with the ignition) on all US and Canadian cars, and the clutch interlock switch (the wiring is there for it in the US cars, they just don't install the switch).

The reason that cars can't be imported to Canada is that they have to be on the list of allowed cars. Apparently, the dealer network lobbied to exclude US spec cars from that list. The manufacturers have little control on dealer/importer lobbying efforts. As a matter of fact, it's in Lotus' interest to support them. Besides having the cars for sale in Canada, Lotus has to have a dealer network that can support warranty and after sales service. It's not in anyone's interest to have cars that can't be supported in the local economy - the government is certainly not going to allow it since it would be hard/impossible for owners to maintain their cars (at least from an emission/safety point of view).
Thanks for the informative response Tim. So the dealers lobbied against allowing US spec cars into Canada, which makes sense, otherwise they would have gotten killed in pricing.


Isn't it already long trek to service a Lotus unless you live in Montreal, Toronto or Vancouver?
 

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Dealers lobbied to protect their market and pricing.... once you have purchased the car, as a customer this partially helps protect your resale value...ALTHOUGH this would not have been an issue if Canadian dealers adjusted the pricing to reflect the equivalent of US currency.. I say dealers because they purchase the cars at the exactly same price as the US dealers..(in US money) from LOTUS USA.

And how does taht work exatly... well the dealers lobbied to LOTUS and all LOTUS has to not do is provide the "required" mods to the VIR and Canada Customs for it to be on the restricted list. Without this info the VIR cannot inspect any mods and allow it in the country.. and beleive me, they will not go seaching for this. It must come from the Car Manufacturer. + even if you found a loop hole, LOTUS will never give you the "requirement" letter (for the recalls etc) so this is a dealer/manuf thing!

But as us Canadians know.... they are not alone in this... and it sucks!
 

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Discussion Starter #18
Dealers lobbied to protect their market and pricing.... once you have purchased the car, as a customer this partially helps protect your resale value...ALTHOUGH this would not have been an issue if Canadian dealers adjusted the pricing to reflect the equivalent of US currency.. I say dealers because they purchase the cars at the exactly same price as the US dealers..(in US money) from LOTUS USA.

And how does taht work exatly... well the dealers lobbied to LOTUS and all LOTUS has to not do is provide the "required" mods to the VIR and Canada Customs for it to be on the restricted list. Without this info the VIR cannot inspect any mods and allow it in the country.. and beleive me, they will not go seaching for this. It must come from the Car Manufacturer. + even if you found a loop hole, LOTUS will never give you the "requirement" letter (for the recalls etc) so this is a dealer/manuf thing!

But as us Canadians know.... they are not alone in this... and it sucks!
By the way, Ravenbk and Tim thanks for the 2 great responses. Very informative and helpful.

So Ravenbk, let me get this straight. Canadian dealers buy the cars from Lotus for the same price (in US money) as the the American dealers, but they charge us more money?

Are Canadian dealers charging more because they are trying to gouge Canadians or because they have to pay extra taxes and/or extra expenses?!
 

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no... just cause they can... and dont forget, an ELISE/EXIGE is an exotic here... only 3 dealers in CANADA hold them... and control the market. This is the set up they have with LOTUS. Its unfortunate but true! Cest la vie! as they say
 

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Yes they control the market, but look at Scotti. They have a lot full of 30 Lotus they can't sell.

Then again that may be Scotti's habitual problem of not lowering price ever for anything.
 
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