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5 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
Dear Fellow Lotus Talkers ,

Yesterday I bought a 2010 Elise R N/A , and am delighted to have finally joined the Lotus family .

I wanted to tell you about the wonderful service that we had from Jamie Matthews at Bell & Colvill yesterday , and to introduce myself and the car , and also to tell you about a book that I am planning to write on the Elise / Exige , and to ask you to contribute text and photos of your experiences and your cars .

I had had plenty of time to think about what to replace my trusty 1993 Series 1 MX5 with , as that car , which I have owned for the last 17 years , first started to flood its footwells about 18 months ago .
So everything from another Series 1 MX5 , series 3 ,&4 MX5 , Loti , Alfa 4C , Gallardo , 540C / 570S ( in my dreams ) was considered .

Late on Friday , B&C posted an advert for an Orange 2010 facelift Elise R ( N/A 189 bhp )
I spoke to a highly efficient receptionist called Lucy first thing on Saturday morning , who put me through to Jamie Matthews.
I asked Jamie some specific questions about that particular car , and he said that he would ring me back with the answers within 15 minutes , which is exactly what he did .Every question was fully answered . He said that he had appts right through to 2 pm , and we agreed to meet up then .
We arrived about 1/2 an hour early , and were greeted by a very pleasant young man who was working at the Lotus / Morgan subsidiary . The car was already waiting for us , freshly washed , on the forecourt .
Jamie's prior customer left about 15 minutes later , and he attended to us ( rather than his lunch ) immediately .
At that stage , we did not know if we would actually indulge , but Jamie was happy to spend a lot of time showing us that car , and also a supercharged Elise .
Totally delightful throughout , and a mine of Lotus information - my wife said that she had never had such a concentration of car information imparted so succinctly or so generously .
A long test drive in both the N/A and the S/C car for each of us , despite it being late on a Saturday evening , and with 2 punters who might not have purchased
A direct and honest negotiation on price , and the deal was done ( I had explained right at the start to Jamie that the S/C car was outside the budget - yet he was happy enough to spend an equal amount of time talking us through that car as well )
We noted 2 small issues on the car - the roof seal was detaching / torn , and a squealing noise , but Jamie noted these almost before me , and said that both would be rectified even before I could ask .
Normally I would examine each document in great detail before agreeing to anything , but for the first time in my car buying career , I did not , purely because I genuinely felt that B&C and Jamie would look after me , and the details .
Its nice dealing with such people .

If you are thinking of a Lotus , my admittedly limited experience , would suggest that you consider buying through Jamie and B&C .

Onto the final 2 points :
The car I bought was a 2 owner car , and the 1st owner was the current Director of Communications at Hethel , whom I had been in communication with about 6 months ago , regarding writing a book on the Elise / Exige .
Completely fortuitous , and a real thrill to find that someone I knew at Hethel had been the first owner .

I have written 2 books on cars thus far , and although this is my first Lotus , I have been enamoured by the marque for the last 30 years .
My plan is therefore to write a book on the Elise / Exige , and I would welcome any text / photo contributions from owners and enthusiasts .
To give you an idea on my writing style and my background , my previous books are :
1) Lamborghini Murcielago ( Please Google : 9781845849221)
2) KTM X-BOW ( Please Google : 9781787114333 )
Both these are the first books worldwide on these respective models , are available on Amazon , and are only what they are because of the very generous contributions from fellow owners and enthusiasts )
I am currently about 3/4 way through a book on the Lamborghini Countach ( which I hope to have ready for the Countach prototype's 50th Anniversary next year ) , and immediately after this would like to start on the Lotus marque .
Lotus and KTM and Lamborghini are all so intertwined , albeit in a veiled manner -- when we met Giampaolo Dallara ( Haas F1 & IndyCar ) , Lambo's first Technical Director , and the brains behind the X-BOW , he told us that the person that he most admired as a young engineer , and the person whose engineering philosophy he most closely attempted to follow , was Colin Chapman .
I am an absolute amateur , and write purely because I love these marques ( I ordered my first Lotus in 1989/90 , but had to pull out when the price of the Elan rose from £18.5 k to £22k and rising ---- yes , its been a 30 year wait to get my first Lotus --- you can understand why i'm so excited --- esp as its the N/A 2ZZ engine -- the S/C engine will have to wait for now )
Your contribution / involvement will be valuable beyond compare ( and Hethel have been very positive about helping --- I found that Lamborghini and KTM factory involvement invaluable ) .
If you would like to be involved , please e-mail me at : [email protected]
best wishes
( Dr T Pathmanathan BSc MBBChir (Cambridge ) MRCOphth FRCOphth FRCS Provisional Member Guild of Motoring Writers UK )

07 Exige S
1,572 Posts
Very cool! I am too lazy for homework, but congratulations on your new car. This is a great community of enthusiasts and no doubt you will find plenty to write about!

Premium Member
2005 Elise LSS Saffron Yellow
816 Posts
The existing Elise book is old and definitely not perfect - you have a lot of room to work with there. This pair of models has a long history and a prominent place in the Marque's history and, thanks to the Telsa Roadster a notable place in automotive history as a whole as well.

You could do worse than to look at All Corvettes Are Red for some of your model - As with GM and the C5 Corvette, Lotus experienced many and frequent tribulations over the life of the Elige (as we often call the two cars here), and you can't really tell the story of the car without telling some of the story of the company from 1995-present.

Oh, and don't forget to explore the type 121 Europa S, too - a car I didn't know existed until I stumbled over it on Wikipedia one day.

Premium Member
11,897 Posts
For US, but still helpful to you.

Note to new Elise & Exige Owners:

1. These cars have large (i.e. dangerous) blind spots. Multivex mirrors are NLA, but RLS (Really Light Stuff) offers very good tape-on replacements.

2. The horns are way too weak (quiet). There’s an inverse relationship: smaller the car, louder the horn needs to be.

Get something such as a Stebel Nautilus.

Stock: “Excuse me”

Stebel: “HONK! LOOK OUT!”

Remove the stock horn; replace with louder.

(I drive with my finger on the horn button in any traffic. Iffy situations, my headlights are on.

Stay to the left of traffic, i.e. avoid passing on the right if you can.

Stop way behind trucks, SUVs, etc. Some have blindspots >50’. )

3. The early cars came with misaimed and dim headlights. If you drive at night, convert to HIDs. While better than stock halogen bulbs are available, HIDs throw more light. Stay around 5000k. As of this writing LEDs are not as good.

4. Ensure your car has had the work required by the recall for oil line fittings done. You could lose an engine and/or spin in your own oil.

5. Transmission:

The best transmission lube I’ve found is Redline MT-90 plus a little Power Punch Extreme Gear Oil Additive. (Note that it takes two changes to get rid of the previous lube.)

a) Early cars have wobbly shift towers. Look up Stan’s Mod (bolt and spacer; and

And, use:

Re-Enforcer long thru bolts that terminate under car and tie down the tower:

These (lube, mods) make a huge change in shifting.

6. As per some engine builders on these sites, wait AT LEAST 20 -35 minutes aftercoolant has reached full operating temp before engaging cam switchover.

For street cars, consider removing one or both oil coolers. Some cover them. Oil doesn’t get hot enough on street, leading to cam wiping.

I use Mobil 1 5W-40 Turbo Diesel oil. 85k miles and fine, but one is not a useful example.

7. Rear toe-links can loosen and break with disastrous results. You can check tq periodically, or use Nordlock washers. Best is conversion to better engineered brace, such as BOE’s InoKinetic’s for two examples.

8. While under the car with panel off, look around for hoses and wires chafing their way to failure. That’s how this was found:

9. The stock radiators are prone to leaking where the end caps meet the metal part. Keep an eye on this. Most of us use single-pass all-aluminum radiators.

10. When your wheel well liner comes loose, skip the lame plastic rivet and use Well-Nuts instead.

11. Life will be better if you disable the auto-arming alarm function on the earlier cars. You won’t have to press a button to start the car. Instructions:

Remote Key Fob, Immobilizer & Misc Alarm Programming

12. These cars cannot be left off a Battery Tender for weeks at a time. Unless dead batteries are a particular joy of yours. Buy one right away. There are numerous threads here about which ppl use and like.

You NEED a digital multimeter (voltmeter) to work on modern cars. Handy around house too. Get one this week.

13, Some on this site are a bit obsessed with hockey pucks for lifting the car. Don’t use these. Too hard and slippery, generally, and too small a surface area. Use a piece of wood, as your hero does.

14. If you are fooling with sparkplugs, remember to slather those tubes in dielectric grease (prevents shorts).

15. Visit the Uber Thread

16. Most parts on the car are made by Toyota and others, so buying things like a/c compressors, engine parts, etc. is wildly expensive when purchased thru Lotus.

Toyota dealers, auto parts stores are way less expensive.

17. The soft high-grip tires on most of our cars lose much of that grip when temperatures drop below 50 F. I know of too many ppl who spun their cars when not remembering this. I use hi-performance all-seasons.

Note that many summer tires cannot even be stored in temps below 20 F.


Plus, “How to bleed brakes”:

How to Search:

For future reference: Don't use the search on this site. Simply use Google and end the search text with "". E.g.
Transmission Fluid change what bolt

no space

59 Posts
Stay to the left of traffic, i.e. avoid passing on the right if you can.
Better to pass on the right in Path's case ;)

If you haven't already, I'd recommend taking the factory and classic workshop tours at Hethel. You'll gain some interesting historical background, as well as some insight on today's cars, which might be helpful for your book. Or you could take the Bronze lesson at the Driving Academy, which includes the tours.

5 Posts
Discussion Starter #6
Thank you all (particularly glb for the extra time and trouble that you put in ) fo replying .
I'm learning all the time , and am grateful to you for sharing your experiences and knowledge .

Please keep the information rolling in


Premium Member
11,897 Posts
I posted merely a Word doc that I send to all new owners. Hope it helps.
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