Lotus Elan

Happy Retirement end of this month

PostPost by: Wickey » Thu Feb 25, 2016 8:51 am

Hello,

I am due to retire end of the month (early) with a big golden handshake bonus (no not a bankers handout) Some of which I want to spend on a nice British classic car (before 'others' get their hands on the rest of it). With interest rates so low I figure a small investment in the car will not prove a long term financial burden. The Elan and MGB are a bit too small for me so I have been looking round for an Elan +2. I like the idea of a fibreglass body too as have no automotive skills.

The prices seem so wide apart and I am not a big fan of eBay, so been looking on this forum site too and the classsic car websites. I have also read most of what I can find on 'Buying an Elan'

My search was due to start during March but I have two cars reasonably locally I am going to look into this weekend. I won't jump into buying the first one I see and be travelling around kicking a few tyres first no doubt as there does appear a lot for sale anyway. I stress I would rather pay more now upfront as I only want to polish it :wink: and pump the tyres up!!! Sorry no spanner skills.

Does anyone have any knowledge of either of these two cars that may assist me. One is Private sale the other a garage so thought I would see how close they fair. Or does anyone know of a concours one for sale. I will try and work out a travel plan to view as many as possible but don't want to be travelling back and forth unnecessarily up and down the country so probably just spend a week in Travel Lodges or BB's when I workout a timeline for visits. Just as these two are only 20 miles away or so I thought i can get my foot in and start learning.

http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/Lotus-ELAN-2S ... SwjVVVwKqw

http://www.carandclassic.co.uk/car/C710049

Thank you in anticipation of the great help I can see this forum gives to Lotus owners present and future.


Wickey
Wickey
Second Gear
Second Gear
 
Posts: 61
Joined: 25 Feb 2016
Location: Hull

PostPost by: vincereynard » Thu Feb 25, 2016 3:43 pm

Welcome to the forum.

I am in a similar position to yourself, except I won't mind getting a bit grubby - occasionally.

As you have read lots of "buying" tips you will know that there are basically 3 "series". The early +2, the +2S, +2S Big Valve.

The earlier cars had fixed bucket seats - will you fit? The later a posher interior of dubious ergonomics, but better electrics. (40 years ago and still Lucas!).

Perhaps the first thing you have to try to narrow down is what you want the car for. A show car as a week end toy, or a regular driver? Nothing wrong with either.

Both the cars you mention look very pretty in the Ads. Nearly all of them do from a few metres away.

Vince
vincereynard
Coveted Fifth Gear
Coveted Fifth Gear
 
Posts: 1234
Joined: 12 Jan 2015
Location: amersham

PostPost by: KevJ+2 » Thu Feb 25, 2016 4:00 pm

Hello Wickey and welcome.
I think your biggest challenge is to find a car with a good body / paint job as it sounds like you will be getting all your mechanical work / repairs done at a garage? All repairs are possible including chassis changes but a good paint job will cost many thousands. In this respect, a fibreglass bodied car, is more complex than an MG for instance.
The two cars you want to see look good, but as Vince says - they all do from a distance. The second one with the questionable purple roof belongs to someone who was on here for some time and often remarked how perfect his car was, so maybe it is!
My advice would be to find someone who will either look at your choices for, or with you. There is a lot to consider at that sort of price range.
Good luck in your search.
Kev.
KevJ+2
Fourth Gear
Fourth Gear
 
Posts: 819
Joined: 23 Aug 2013

PostPost by: Wickey » Thu Feb 25, 2016 4:20 pm

Thank You Vince and Kev,

I had basically worked on there being 4 variations if you were to include the 5 speed box and narrowed it down to the +2S or +2S130 as I won't be doing long stretch journeys but can easily fit into smaller seats of the +2. There is a nice looking +2 down south at a reasonable price which I do have on my list to get to see but I am not a fan of red cars really.

No doubt the car will get regular use but will be garaged so I can look initially for something pristine and hopefully keep it that way. I would love to have the skills and tools to do something more but will have to pay for mechanical/bodywork so rather get something hopefully that one of you guys has looked after, done all the 'hard work' and now wants a change.

I expect to find some toads before the Prince but will enjoy my first few weeks of retirement travelling round the country looking. Not a 'show' type person or a concours searcher so have also considered the Zetec conversion I have read about but will search out the/which marque local area club I join once I get a car. Only waiting just in case it does not end up to be a Lotus.

Wickey
Wickey
Second Gear
Second Gear
 
Posts: 61
Joined: 25 Feb 2016
Location: Hull

PostPost by: pharriso » Thu Feb 25, 2016 6:00 pm

The second car (PLU5 2) belongs to someone on here....
Phil Harrison
1972 Elan Sprint 0260K
User avatar
pharriso
Coveted Fifth Gear
Coveted Fifth Gear
 
Posts: 2977
Joined: 15 Sep 2010
Location: Long Island NY, USA

PostPost by: Fred Talmadge » Thu Feb 25, 2016 6:13 pm

I'm still a year away from retirement so I'm a bit jealous. That and you have enough money to retire AND buy a Lotus. I haven't been in many +2 but with the fixed roof I didn't feel it was that much bigger than a Elan. I'm 5'10 200lbs so I can fit into most any car.
User avatar
Fred Talmadge
Third Gear
Third Gear
 
Posts: 406
Joined: 24 Sep 2003
Location: Bellville, TX USA

PostPost by: Wickey » Thu Feb 25, 2016 7:18 pm

Thanks Phil I will see if I can do any background searches on the forum.

Fred I was not due to retire (still too young) but no one wants our Northern UK steel anymore.

You would think that with the same owners owning the largest UK car manufacture it would be self surviving......

Still as I gather most of the spare parts for even the British classic cars are now imported maybe my search for a fibreglass bodied car has some unexplained wrong deep roots in my head. Not the time to go off topic perhaps as the handshake was pure 'gold' as much as I would have earned/earnt anyway before I was due to retire...........

So it is a Scimitar, TVR, Daimler Dart or maybe even a Dell Boy Reliant Robin if not a Lotus I shall be having fun with in the future. Anyone know any other fibreglass options other than a boat!!!!! :mrgreen:

Wickey
Wickey
Second Gear
Second Gear
 
Posts: 61
Joined: 25 Feb 2016
Location: Hull

PostPost by: john.p.clegg » Thu Feb 25, 2016 7:26 pm

Wickey

Welcome...
I looked at a Scimitar but wasn't happy with the size of it, and the Daimler Dart although good looking handles like a pig...other options Rochdale Olympic ?

Go for a Plus2,you'll not regret it ( though you'll wish you were handier with a spanner/multimeter )

John :wink:
User avatar
john.p.clegg
Coveted Fifth Gear
Coveted Fifth Gear
 
Posts: 5736
Joined: 21 Sep 2003
Location: Manchester

PostPost by: Galwaylotus » Thu Feb 25, 2016 7:26 pm

Wickey wrote:So it is a Scimitar, TVR, Daimler Dart or maybe even a Dell Boy Reliant Robin if not a Lotus I shall be having fun with in the future. Anyone know any other fibreglass options other than a boat!!!!! :mrgreen:

Wickey


Chevrolet Corvette!! :lol: :lol: :lol:
Mechanical Engineer, happily retired!

'67 S3 SE FHC

See Facebook page: W J Barry Photography

Put your money where your mouse is, click on "Support LotusElan.net" below.
User avatar
Galwaylotus
Coveted Fifth Gear
Coveted Fifth Gear
 
Posts: 1357
Joined: 01 May 2006
Location: Galway, Ireland

PostPost by: vincereynard » Thu Feb 25, 2016 7:46 pm

john.p.clegg wrote:Wickey

..other options Rochdale Olympic ?

John :wink:


I owned both a Phase1 and a Phase2 Olympic. Very much an "if only" car. I would not advise it is you are not a bit practical with the spanners. A sorted Phase 2 with a twink in it - that would be interesting.

Sorry, going off topic, I'll get my coat.
vincereynard
Coveted Fifth Gear
Coveted Fifth Gear
 
Posts: 1234
Joined: 12 Jan 2015
Location: amersham

PostPost by: Fred Talmadge » Thu Feb 25, 2016 7:47 pm

I had a Elva Courier for awhile. Lots of fun. Even less practical than the Elan
User avatar
Fred Talmadge
Third Gear
Third Gear
 
Posts: 406
Joined: 24 Sep 2003
Location: Bellville, TX USA

PostPost by: vincereynard » Thu Feb 25, 2016 7:50 pm

Ginetta, Tornado Talisman, Gilbern, Marcos, Turner - loads of choice. Plus, of course, a lot of ferocious TVR's
vincereynard
Coveted Fifth Gear
Coveted Fifth Gear
 
Posts: 1234
Joined: 12 Jan 2015
Location: amersham

PostPost by: Wickey » Thu Feb 25, 2016 8:21 pm

OK OK but it has to be British....I really am patriotic.......Is TVR now Russian though? I forgot about the Ginetta.....I do remember a bigger version like the Lotus Elan a G5 I think but the little one would be too small for me....a bit like the Mini Marcos. Then Marcos did make a bigger car too in fibreglass did they not.........As for the American cars the only one for me would be a 1964ish Mustang if the funds can stretch to both before the new kitchen, new carpets, new sofa, daughters wedding and a trip to see the family down under ..............so the car has to come quick......I am sure you understand.....and I really do want a Lotus

Wickey
Wickey
Second Gear
Second Gear
 
Posts: 61
Joined: 25 Feb 2016
Location: Hull

PostPost by: billwill » Thu Feb 25, 2016 10:11 pm

I owned a Scimitar for a few years, but I'd never buy another.

It's big, yet it has less room in the back than an Elan; huge wheel arches intrude into the rear floor space.

The engine is massive and very difficult to work on.

It was very good at pulling a boat trailer though :D and being an automatic with that powerful engine was easy to drive (if you could afford all that petrol!)
Bill Williams

36/6725 S3 Coupe OGU108E Yellow over Black.
billwill
Coveted Fifth Gear
Coveted Fifth Gear
 
Posts: 4747
Joined: 19 Apr 2008
Location: London UK

PostPost by: UAB807F » Fri Feb 26, 2016 10:10 am

Hi Wickey, and welcome to the forum.

Yes, Marcos did make a 4 seat car, the Mantis, but not very many of them and I'd imagine they're very difficult to come by nowadays. 2.5L Triumph engine IIRC.

Having read through the posts, have you considered spending a day at somewhere like Paul Matty's ? Yes, it is more expensive than Ebay or buying private and a trek from Hull, but you'll get a chance to see cars in both average and excellent condition which will give you a feel for the market.

Just looking at private sales it's very easy to think "wow, perfect" or "wow, rubbish" but seeing several together or in close timescales gives a better perspective. And given you aren't keen on maintenance at least you'll have a better chance of getting something that's checked by a specialist & hopefully reliable.

Although you might find yourself changing on the maintenance front, they're simple cars and it's quite satisfying to say "I did that".

Finally - early retirement is great, welcome to the club. I did it as well and really don't know how I managed to find the time to go to work.

Brian
User avatar
UAB807F
Fourth Gear
Fourth Gear
 
Posts: 649
Joined: 20 Dec 2010
Location: Lincolnshire
Next

Total Online:

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 2 guests