Lotus Elan

6 speed gearbox for the Elan

PostPost by: ardee_selby » Tue Sep 27, 2011 9:05 am

I posted these links elsewhere (gallery thread). Great vids. Thought there would be some comment, but maybe they were lost in there...so maybe here is better.

"5 speed is now 6...

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=G2_0REH-xVU
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=X3aTwiwa ... re=related"
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PostPost by: Spyder fan » Tue Sep 27, 2011 11:32 am

ardee_selby wrote:I posted these links elsewhere (gallery thread). Great vids. Thought there would be some comment, but maybe they were lost in there...so maybe here is better.

"5 speed is now 6...

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=G2_0REH-xVU
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=X3aTwiwa ... re=related"


Richard,
Not sure I noticed 6th gear being used, I was too busy wondering if the BDG was too much for the chassis and traction department or whether the throttle setup was a bit too much like a switch (power on or off, nothing in between), Elan's never seem to drive smoothly when they are going quick, I was cringeing on most of the corner exits with the loss of traction and power oversteer, but perhaps thats the way to get the best out of the car. A very impressive piece of kit nonetheless.

When the car was at Donington my wife was looking very bored when I was busy talking to Tony about his 6 speed gearbox and how he had managed to relocate the gearlever, therefore I never got the chance to confirm his diff ratio and whether he had left the MX5 ratios as standard, we really ought to get a fashion show or mobile branch of Selfridges to run alongside Donington so we can send the non interested spouses there whilst us boys enjoy ourselves looking and talking about Elans.

Now that at last somebody (Thanks Bob) has given a positive real world report on using the gearbox in a standard road car we can all consider using it. I still don't remember anyone mentioning the fitted price though, Bob can you tell us?

Regards
Kindest regards

Alan Thomas
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PostPost by: GrUmPyBoDgEr » Tue Sep 27, 2011 12:02 pm

Sorry but I'm once again, going seriously off topic.

Having also watched that video clip I do agree with you Alan.

Without knowing the driver's ability it appears that the engine is "overkill" for what can be best described as a "standard Elan"
The car appeared to be being "tickled" around most of the track, with even Silverstone not being straight enough to show the top speed & acceleration ability of that engine.

That amount of power & torque was tameable in Modsports Elans which mostly had what could b described as F2 suspension set-ups & wheels/tyres.

A lovely toy without a doubt but I wonder if having that amount of power available in an Elan is really fun? :roll:

Did I actually write that? :lol:

Cheers
John
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Editor: On Sunday morning, February 8th 2015, Derek "John" Pelly AKA GrumpyBodger passed away genuinely peacefully at Weston Hospicecare, Weston Super Mare. He will be missed.
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PostPost by: Bob » Tue Sep 27, 2011 9:54 pm

Bit off topic, I assure you that that much power is a lot of fun, my S2 has the BDP engine and is it quick, cars do seem to disappear in the mirror very quickly.
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PostPost by: ianthomson72 » Sat Nov 10, 2012 6:17 pm

It's been over a year since the last update on this thread. Does anyone know what happened to this project ( 6 speed mazda into elan)?
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PostPost by: AnthonyBelcher » Sun Nov 11, 2012 3:20 am

I have only had my S4 Elan for three weeks now and originally thought it needed a 5 speed box. After page 5 of the posts on the subject I lost the will to live. I decided that the Elan gearbox is best left as a 4 speed as intended. Just keep off motorways. Last weekend was my first long drive from Warwick to Leeds I decided to go cross country on A and B roads. Wow what a trip across the Derbyshire Moors etc. Great driving. Who on earth wants to take an Elan on a motorway. Keep the 4 speed box and just drive on proper Elan type roads. Sheer Heaven.
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PostPost by: c42 » Sun Nov 11, 2012 9:51 am

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PostPost by: elansprint71 » Sun Nov 11, 2012 11:26 pm

AnthonyBelcher wrote:I have only had my S4 Elan for three weeks now and originally thought it needed a 5 speed box. After page 5 of the posts on the subject I lost the will to live. I decided that the Elan gearbox is best left as a 4 speed as intended. Just keep off motorways. Last weekend was my first long drive from Warwick to Leeds I decided to go cross country on A and B roads. Wow what a trip across the Derbyshire Moors etc. Great driving. Who on earth wants to take an Elan on a motorway. Keep the 4 speed box and just drive on proper Elan type roads. Sheer Heaven.


Welcome to he forum; this is exactly how I felt in 1976 :wink: .
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PostPost by: msd1107 » Sun Nov 11, 2012 11:49 pm

Driving only on low speed roads is a noble sentiment.

However, my S4 is a daily driver. My drive up to rowing practice is 60+ miles on the freeway at 75+ MPH and 10+ miles on a delightful back country road to the lake.

Even though I have had the 3.55 CWP for a long time, this still means long distances at 4000+ RPM. A 5-speed would reduce that to the low 3000 RPM range, much more livable.

And on a trip back from the Monterey Historics, I barely kept up with a Ferrari and Porsche at over 6000 RPM. The car does it, but a 5-speed (or 6-speed) would make the car much nicer.

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PostPost by: AnthonyBelcher » Mon Nov 12, 2012 12:12 am

Noble I'm not. I am now retired and have more time to get to places and enjoy the drive. I bought the Elan for my day to day travel and I have sold my modern car as it was no fun. Back to basics with no power this that and the other and certainly no computers except a satnav!
Anthony Belcher.
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PostPost by: trw99 » Mon Nov 12, 2012 7:14 am

I'm with you Anthony! Great sentiments and wonderful philosophy.

Tim
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PostPost by: freddy22112211 » Mon Nov 12, 2012 8:10 am

I always felt that my 4 speed elan was missing something, not a complete car. Then I bought my 5 speed - heaven!
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PostPost by: alexblack13 » Mon Nov 12, 2012 8:48 am

freddy22112211 wrote:I always felt that my 4 speed elan was missing something, not a complete car. Then I bought my 5 speed - heaven!
Gordon



+1.... :wink:

My problem is that anything I want to do with the car and any trips to events etc... Silverstone for E.G., does kinda point you in the direction of some motorways. I followed a friend back from Le Mans 2010 and we used some motorways. and even cruising along a ..Ahemm!.. 'little' over the limit was very noisy indeed. I eventually just gave up and slowed down. The 5 speed is just a revelation in the Elan (sprint) and taking the time and effort to get the lever right and now running it on Red line MTL has resulted an a very nice shift feel to it too. Couple that to over 40 mpg and the result is one very happy Ecky. Sitting in the car one just can't tell its a 5 speed. The lever length and position is unchanged and it uses the std 4 speed gaiter. And.. I have retained the 4 speed original Knob. :wink:

Happy days...

Al' ... 8)
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PostPost by: AnthonyBelcher » Mon Nov 12, 2012 9:59 am

Hi Al'

It sounds as if you have the 5 speed gearbox that everyone yearns for. Please can you let us know what it is and where you got it from? 40 mpg sounds good too. On my first long trip to Leeds the Elan only returned 26.5 mpg. Oh dear the accountant in me is taking over as could a financial case be made for fitting a 5 speed with a reasonably short payback period? 40 mpg instead of 26.5 mpg gives a saving of nearly ?8.00 every 100 miles. Mind you with a 5 speed gearbox costing say ?3,500 it would take some 44,000 miles to get your money back and as I only intend to do around 5,000 miles per annum an 8.5 year payback does not sound so good. STOP IT. I'm off for a high revving drive.
Anthony Belcher.
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PostPost by: elansprint71 » Mon Nov 12, 2012 12:43 pm

Anthony, if you have a read through some of the stuff already on here you will probably get the impression that the 5-speed "Lotus" box fitted to the +2 can be something of a swine to change gear with. As Alex and many others have found, this is not always the case; I don't know why this should be. The guts of the box came from the Austin Maxi, that had a cable-change mechanism!
Fitting a 3.55, or 3.54 diff is certainly worthwhile and relatively easy.

My modern car has six gears, I'm always trying to stuff the Elan into fifth or sixth from fourth!
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