Lotus Elan

26/0538 - 60 year anniversary with one owner

PostPost by: Bill » Thu May 09, 2024 9:10 pm

As of May 10th I am celebrating my 60 years of driving my Elan 1600 (early S1).

I ordered my car from the factory in early December of 1963 (no dealers in Canada at that time) - The car was built and delivered in March 64 to the London docks and shipped by sea to Vancouver where, on May 10th, I watched it being lifted from the ships hold and thence drove it home to Vancouver Island (The Rock).

I am still enjoying driving it briskly at age 83. As the saying goes "It doesn't drive me".

Any other long time (older) owners out there???

Bill Rathlef
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Vancouver Island, Canada
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PostPost by: h20hamelan » Thu May 09, 2024 9:25 pm

keep them sticks on the ice!
Born, and brought home from the hospital (no seat belt (wtf)) in a baby!
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PostPost by: pharriso » Thu May 09, 2024 9:43 pm

Happy 60th Bill !!

Our cars looked great together
ElanCollection_BritishColumbia_2013_04_26_029.JPG and
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PostPost by: woodcock » Thu May 09, 2024 11:54 pm

Hi Bill, Same age but haven't keep my Elan as long. Saw an Elise in Australia in 1964 on leave from Viet Nam. Wanted one. Back to the States in "65 and off to England where at the "65 Earls Court show they introduced the Elan Coupe vice the no longer Elise.Had it shipped to the Port of New York, picked it up, I think in February of "66, #5192 It was my daily driver till I unfortunately sold it and acquired a 2005 Elise, then a Tony Thompson Elan GTS which I and now negotiating to get back in exchange for a Sprint. You were smart, I wasn't, too many trades. Nothing like an Elan & good health.
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PostPost by: trw99 » Fri May 10, 2024 6:51 am

Nice one, Bill and happy Elan birthday!

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PostPost by: RichardS » Fri May 10, 2024 6:57 am

Congratulations Bill, would be surprised if anyone can beat your record!
Bought my Sprint second hand in 1982 at the age of 23. Insurance was no problem back then.
Used to drive it a lot quicker back then, before the days of speed cameras and average speed cameras. And a lot less traffic.
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PostPost by: cliveyboy » Fri May 10, 2024 7:03 am

Congratulations Bill
I have only owned mine about 27 years
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PostPost by: Andy8421 » Fri May 10, 2024 7:23 am

Congratulations Bill.

I am in the junior league in comparison, I have had my Sprint for nearly 40 years, the S3 for 20.

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PostPost by: gjz30075 » Fri May 10, 2024 8:30 am

Congratulations Bill! You're allowed to raise your stick in celebration.
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PostPost by: ill_will » Fri May 10, 2024 9:05 am

Congrats Bill.

How many miles have you put on it? I've had mine 15 years but have only driven (part of) it 20 yards in that time...!
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PostPost by: 2cams70 » Fri May 10, 2024 9:45 am

Congratulations and good on you. For everyone life presents many challenges so amazing you’ve managed to keep it for so long
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PostPost by: Baggy2 » Fri May 10, 2024 10:03 am

Congratulations Bill
Bought my +2 for £800 in 1976 so 48 years - I'm the second owner.
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PostPost by: nmauduit » Fri May 10, 2024 10:04 am

Very Happy Birthday !

What a great testimony : I wish you both many more years of spirited motoring...

keep it on the road...
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PostPost by: M100 » Fri May 10, 2024 12:29 pm

Congratulations Bill !

Just 40 years ownership for my 72 Sprint DHC coming up in September this year, I bought mine when I was 21.
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PostPost by: stugilmour » Fri May 10, 2024 3:15 pm

Congratulations Bill. Awesome milestone and story.

A good friend of mine had a very similar experience a few years after your car landed. He was with his father to pick up the first Elan SE to hit the Vancouver docks.

As he tells it the then relatively new Lotus dealer took them down to the docks on a calm Saturday for the unpacking. Firing the car was immediately followed by a few impromptu acceleration runs down the desolate dock apron. You know, to “Check the gears”. :D

On a whim they later toured the new car to California. Actually traded yarns with another new SE owner from LA at an impromptu meeting on the iconic Cali Highway 1.

So great that you continue to bomb around The Island with your S1. Wish I could be down your way for the epic BC Lotus Club Vancouver Island Staycation tour in the next few weeks. Hope you are able to post a few pics. :D

Enjoy the ride!
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