The Lotus Cars Community banner

1 - 20 of 28 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
164 Posts
Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
I have been lurking here for a while but this is my first post.

In case anyone is interested, the yellow Euro-spec Elise is available to test drive at Scottsdale Lotus in Arizona.
I took it out for about 30 minutes and came back impressed. It understeers a little more than I thought it would, but in a way it is like riding my sport bike...point and squirt. I'm somewhere around # 60 on their list. They said a few people backed out and I was moved up the list a bit [hope that's true].

Oh yeah, The dealer said when they get THEIR car, they will start developing a super charger kit for it.:D
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
7,610 Posts
Thank you !!! Thank you !!! Thank you Thank you !!!

I'm on my way, right now. er, I mean tomorrow morning.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
296 Posts
Welcome and congratulations on your test drive. I took it for a short spin last Wednesday but traffic was kind of heavy (and I was driving barefoot since my shoes were too wide to fit between the brake and little wall). I plan on going for a longer drive this week to evaluate the car better. It is the Lightning yellow car with black wheels for those of you wondering. I forgot to look at the mileage on it but the car feels like it has been beat on quite a bit. Wasn't that happy with the shifters feel but I feel that will change. When I go for a longer ride and have a chance to get a feel for the car I will have a full report.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
7,610 Posts
What!! :eek: Last Wednesday?!!! How long has the car been there?!!

I heard a car was coming a few weeks ago, and the sales person said they would call everyone, but no one from Scottsdale Lotus called me! :mad:

When the silver Elise came in September, Mark Woods (formers sales person) call me 30 minutes after it came in. sigh.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
296 Posts
Yeah, I was told the same thing. I just happened to stop by and was gonna see if they were gonna be at the car show or had anything planned for it and looked across the little side street and seen the tail of the car sticking out and my mouth hit the floor. In their defense it was a holiday weekend coming up so I'm more happy it was there than pissed about not being called.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
164 Posts
Discussion Starter #6 (Edited)
I got a call around 11/20 or 21 and he said it would be there for a couple of weeks [he thought] so I drove it on 11/25.
It felt pretty zippy, but it will definately benefit from the Toyota powerplant.

edit: I did notice about a quarter inch of material was ground off the front air dam so it probably has been flogged pretty hard. I went into a few parking lots and didn't having problem bottoming out.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,000 Posts
Yeah, that left-hand drive, Euro-spec Elise was at Newport European (Newport Beach, California) on Monday, Nov. 17th. They loaded-it up on a transport on the 18th and I think it arrived on the 19th in Scottsdale.

When I drove that car, it had been driven pretty hard, but still looked great. I didn't punish it at all... and I thought the handling was excellent. (I drove it at about 6/10ths or so out of sheer respect for the demo vehicle.)

Bob K.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
164 Posts
Discussion Starter #8
If you go to Scottsdale Lotus to drive the car, ask the sales person to show the video clip of the lotus Exige running with the Ferrari F40 around the track. Pretty entertaining.
 

·
Forum Founder
Joined
·
29,083 Posts
Sticky at the top of this forum :)
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
7,610 Posts
Yahoo! Got the test drive on the yellow Elise. I have both cell-cam photos and old fashion photos. Unfortunately, the cell-cam photos didn't come out in color (skephia setting?).

Dan, the sale person at Scottsdale Lotus, was great in let me test drive the Elise. He did come with me btw. The whole test drive was about 5- 10 minutes on city streets and freeways.

The Elise was loud. Racey loud. It's about as loud as those aftermarket exhaust seen on teenager's Hondas. I didn't mind it, but it's something a person needs to be willing to accept if you use the Elise as a daily driver. Yes, I think the Fed version will have more sound insulation.

The acceleration was decent at all rpms. Question for Boxster S owners who've test driven the Euro Elise. Does it feel about the same at the lower rpms? I have a '99 Boxster and the 154hp Elise seemed to have a noticeable better low end grunt. It's been awhile since I've driven a Boxster S, but I think the low-mid rpm grunt is about the same.

On the freeway, the Elise didn't really have a great top gear roll on 60 to 80 acceleration. Perhaps the extra hp of the Fed version will take car of that.

As for handling, I'm not sure what to say. I didn't really feel very confident pushing the Elise into corners and sometimes felt like if a pushed it a little more I might loose traction. I wasn't really cornering very fast, so I think my concerns may be because I'm not use to a non-power assisted steering car.

My bigest fear, being the Elise would be too small, was mostly resolved. Yes, I could feel I was smaller and lower than other cars on the road, but it wasn't "freakishly small" or "sitting on asphalt small." Being lower to the ground did make the Elise seem faster.

Overall, my advice to anyone considering an Elise over other sports cars is to be willing to accept what you're getting. The Elise really did have a go-cart type feel to it. If you're looking at a sports car like a Boxster, 350Z, Corvette, M3 or WRXs (technically coupes), etc., then you may feel the Elise is too raw and kit-car like.

Front view (sorry about the color).
http://pictures.sprintpcs.com//share.jsp?invite=4EGrYl8QkUzjUkkokorL&shareName=Photo

This is a picture from the driver's seat of the Boxster.
http://pictures.sprintpcs.com//share.jsp?invite=UEXrYc8lkkk8ZLpk07h0&shareName=Photo

Interior shot
http://pictures.sprintpcs.com/guest/guest_book_photo.jsp;jsessionid=aaa8gtPNPICshn?machineid=wmtp005&shareName=photo&invite=7EKrYZ80kkUXfLV8h8eL&shareName=Photo

I'll have the color photos developed and scanned in a few day.


PS: Dan (and previously other salesmen) confirmed they will receive Elise shippments in groups of 12. IE: First allocation consist of 12 cars. Second allocation next twelve. Currently, they have about 75 people on the list.

Dan also mentioned that order will be placed in January. So at that time, they will contact people with deposits to place their order for colors and options.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,000 Posts
Allan, the yellow demo Elise you drove in Scottsdale was the 120 horsepower car. Considering that, it's pretty shocking to know that it accelerates as briskly as it does with "just" 120 horsepower.

Bob K.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
16 Posts
Scottsdale Test Drive

I drove down from Prescott,AZ. last Monday with a friend for our test drive and was impressed.I had the same concerns about the shifter and power,but kept in mind that the Toyota linkage and additional horse power will cure these negative thoughts.Living at 5500 ft. altidude will eat up some of the new found power,but everyone suffers the same problem up here,so it the great equalizer.That Lotus was certainly beat on,and we were told it has not had any maintainence for some time,kind of a back handed test of its durability under harsh conditions.I found the handling to be quick and precise,and even exceeded by purpose built S3 Lotus Elan in its response.Any other AZ. Lotus lovers out there?We may have to start a support group to get us through the waiting period.ART(#53),67 Lotus Elan(4 sale),54 Jag 120 Coupe,97 BMW Z3/6,04 Murano.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
164 Posts
Discussion Starter #14
rtking, are you positive that is the 120 hp version? If that's true then that is great news. It will have the grunt it needs.

Allan, I agree with you about the handling. It felt like the front didn't have much grip, but the tires and/or suspension could be worn. No worries though. Even if the car comes that way,[which I'm sure it won't] those problems can be addressed.

As far as fitting into the car, I'm 6'4" and I would say anybody taller than that might have a little trouble. I think the biggest issue would be being able to see out of the windshield. My viewing area was at the top 4 inches of the windshield, which is the same thing I run into on my Discovery. The steering wheel was close to my legs but never seemed to interfere. Also, I didn't put the top on but it appeared that I was ok on the head room. Wear skinny shoes for your test drive.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,000 Posts
I'm 99% certain that it was the 120 hp Rover motor

On Lotus' official forum, some people had written about that same Elise when it was at Newport European.

Link to other thread

I guess the motor has the black (plastic?) intake instead of the aluminum intake associated with the 156 horsepower motor.

I was informed that it was indeed the 120 horsepower motor. If I remember correctly, the 120 horsepower motor will power the Elise from 0-60 in 5.8 seconds.

Bob K.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
274 Posts
I took the car for a drive on the 24th; my wife and I were out by ourselves. We didn't have it out too long as I tried not to take advantage of the situation.

Overall impressions were that the car had seem some miles and needed service. The passenger window was loose and made quite a racket. The shifter felt a bit loose too, but nothing as bad as some cars produced 10 years ago.

Beyond the obvious, acceleration seemed OK, but not quite what I was expecting. I would be very happy to hear that the engine was just the 120 and not the 156. Compared to my WRX, it was not in the ballpark, but in the same neighborhood. Power was much better as the RPMs climbed. I think that redline was something like 6100?? Ride quality was about the same as my Miata with AGX shocks set to one of the higher settings. Not great, but like someone else said, a great car for across town, not cross country. I didn't really get into the handling too much, just a few corners. What I did notice was that the steering became heavier at lower speeds; certainly attributable to no power assist. This was not an issue over 10 Mph but will take some getting used to in my first few autox's.

The salesman, Dan, was expecting 10-15 cars per month. He indicated that there had already been ~100 deposits taken.

The yellow was not something that I would order; it was a bit too muted.

For those of you wanting a Lotus today, they have a couple of Esprits available...
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,063 Posts
AutoXr said:
Power was much better as the RPMs climbed. I think that redline was something like 6100??
The rev limiter on the 120HP engine cuts in at around 6900rpm.

To get the best performance you should shift up when the shift light comes on in the rpm counter at around 6500 rpm. (it blinks when the rev limiter is about to cut in)

If anyone else is going to test-drive this car all I can say is that you should really try to accelerate through the gears up to the rev limiter (of course with a warm engine and all that...) or at least until the shift light comes on. Try to resist short-shifting...

On the 156HP 111S version it will rev to 7200 and you should shift close to 7000 for the best performance.

The Elise is a car that's built to be driven at higher revs. It works OK at low rpm's and drives well around town, but it only comes 'alive' when you start looking for the high rpm ranges and keep it there.

Needs a little getting used to if you're used to bigger engines or turbo's with heaps of torque, but you get used to it pretty quickly.

Oh.. The K-series and it's gearbox will sound like a bag of nails when 'pushed', but that's just normal :D

Bye, Arno.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
274 Posts
The Elise is a car that's built to be driven at higher revs. It works OK at low rpm's and drives well around town, but it only comes 'alive' when you start looking for the high rpm ranges and keep it there.
This sounds a lot like my Miata, not much there until you get into the upper reaches. Like I said, I was trying to not take advantage of the situation too much while still getting a goof flavor for the car.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1 Posts
I have to say Dan is great! My wife and I arranged to pick up the car on Saturday and dropped it off on Monday. Well the car is definitely a head turner! We drove up to Sedona and everywhere we went people stopped to ask us what it was. However, this car is not for long trips as you can easily get tired driving. My Esprit now seems like a luxury car to me. For a small car it was powerful and I could only imagine how much faster the Toyota powered edition will be. Needless to say my wife was happy and she looks forward for her new Elise.
 
1 - 20 of 28 Posts
Top