Lotus Elan

Should I or shouldn't I?

PostPost by: Mrozik » Thu Aug 26, 2021 4:50 pm

I've just manage to secure a 1970 Elan DHC that needs restoration. The car looks basically good but the front has been modified with a spoier and wider wheel arches. I am wondering whether in resale terms, its worth returning it to original?
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PostPost by: Elanintheforest » Thu Aug 26, 2021 5:16 pm

I would certainly return it to original specification not just because it would be worth more in that spec but would almost certainly look better!

A Type 26 with the subtle 26R flairs does look gorgeous so long as it has the right height suspension and the right wheels, but there aren't too many other flairs that suit a road car.

I think that you can see from this (quite large) topic what most owners think....

viewtopic.php?f=19&t=16400

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PostPost by: h20hamelan » Thu Aug 26, 2021 5:52 pm

The original Elan is one thing, S3 is another. An S4 has too many square lines for my taste. Not to mention the door window frames which also are not original Elan.
Add in the square reflectors or lights at the corners and the Fed’s attempt to make the S4 more ugly works.
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PostPost by: AlanJH » Fri Aug 27, 2021 2:50 am

For me as an owner of a modified Elan this is a great question. Mine was modified in the mid 90s, I purchased it this way and I absolutely love the look. Does it effect the value? I think it does. I suspect most Elan enthusiasts prefer originality and I would say if I were to undertake a restoration I would probably have the arches returned to original style.
Would I have everything returned to original? Not a chance, we now have access to better materials and knowledge.
How many original Elans are actually out there? Even the most original looking restoration is likely to include a colo(u)r change and a battery disconnect.
If you’re doing the restoration for yourself and you like the look of the body modifications, keep them.
Just get it on the road and drive it, you can’t see the body from the drivers seat and that’s where you need to looking at it from.
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PostPost by: gherlt » Fri Aug 27, 2021 4:35 am

Mrozik wrote:... in resale terms, its worth returning it to original?

Back to your original question, "worth" in £ depends on what you paid for and if are the other issues.

Body work with new paint is the most expensive task - together with engine - on an Elan, because of the manhours required. Moneywise it depends on how much of this labor intense work you will do yourself.

The mods: "Worth" in historic meaning, it depends in which time period they have been done. In Germany they count 10 years after manufacturer for something being "contemporary mod".
1964 S1 (engine ready, awainting body paint)
1967 S3 DHC (trying to recreate Alex Black's window cable clamp bolt)
1969 S4 FHC (engine worn ... )

Brian Bucklands 2nd edition available ! Look here: https://theelanman.com
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PostPost by: Donels » Fri Aug 27, 2021 12:49 pm

In resale terms the answer is 'Who's buying'. If you're restoring it then halve what you spend and this will give you the resale price. Restoration is not a good business it’s a hobby and a love. So forget about resale prices and do what you want the car to look like.
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PostPost by: Mrozik » Fri Aug 27, 2021 1:19 pm

Far enough advice....my preference would be to keep the larger wheel arches & alloy wheels but remove the front air scoop/spoiler although the prevous owner did say that at 120 mph the car lifted off....
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PostPost by: sprintsoft » Fri Aug 27, 2021 2:34 pm

Hi,

it sounds like an interesting car...

any chance of a photo?

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PostPost by: Mrozik » Fri Aug 27, 2021 3:29 pm

Here you go……
Attachments
F7D64FEC-F5A7-46CC-8E48-DDF76A691185.jpeg and
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PostPost by: Elanintheforest » Sat Aug 28, 2021 9:05 am

For me those flairs look good, but that spoiler doesn't! When fitted to a race car the spoiler is usually 1/2 inch off the tarmac, but on a road car they can't be, and look wrong sitting up in the air!

If it was my car I would loose the spoiler and see what it looked like just with the flairs. Sorting out the spoiler is a relatively easy job, and repairs limited to under the bumper....ish. Deleting the flairs is a fairly large job, with a lot of fibreglass work to do, and a complete re-spray. And a new set of wheels and tyres!
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PostPost by: Mrozik » Sat Aug 28, 2021 11:07 am

I’ve come to a similar conclusion except although I’ll change the tyres which are now 13 x 175s and catching on the front wheel arches!!! I’m thinking 165s although the originals were 155s??? I’ll polish up the alloys.
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PostPost by: Famous Frank » Tue Sep 07, 2021 10:10 pm

Just an FYI, it appears to me ( and I can be wrong about everything ) the rears are also flared.

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PostPost by: JohnMorin » Wed Sep 08, 2021 1:14 pm

If you want to get back to as near as possible to the original 155 rolling radius without fitting 155s use 175/70, you may even be able to get some with the correct speed rating without spending a fortune.
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PostPost by: Mrozik » Wed Sep 08, 2021 1:25 pm

They’re the ones on now and the front tyres are almost touching. Would 165/70 ‘s be better? I’m not an expert on tyres :)
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PostPost by: JohnMorin » Wed Sep 08, 2021 3:20 pm

Have a look at this:

https://www.wheel-size.com/calc/

You can change all the values to find a wheel and tyre combination that fits. It tells you the wheel revs per mile so you can start from 155 x 13.

It doesn't mean that either the wheel or tyre actually exist though, :D

I can't tell from the picture whether or not you have knock on wheels, if you have that will limit your choice.

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