Lotus Elan

Q plates

PostPost by: Mick6186 » Fri Nov 30, 2018 3:51 pm

I'm not sure about older elans but my 1973 130/5 definitely had 'matching numbers'
The VIN ends in 1127L.
The Unit number on the body plate ends in 1127L
The original frame number which I cut out of the rotten frame is 1127L
On various places on the body such as the back of the headlamp pods and the doors there is the number 1127 hand drawn.
My engine number is not original because at some stage in the past the engine bottom end was damaged and replaced in 1992 with a tall block conversion. I should imagine a large number of surviving Elans have at some stage had a block replacement due to owners thrashing the b******s off of them.
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PostPost by: trw99 » Fri Nov 30, 2018 5:05 pm

Mick, the Unit No is THE defining identify number for each and every Elan.

You have merely listed several places where you have found that number, which indicates that your car is good and original, apart clearly from the engine. By 1973 Lotus were getting better at number annotation, compared to the 1960s. Early Elans had Type, Unit, Chassis, Body and Engine numbers, not forgetting Registration and Invoice numbers!

But we divert from the original fascinating and important subject, our eyes peeled for the next exciting revelation!

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PostPost by: Mick6186 » Fri Nov 30, 2018 10:42 pm

Tim,
Thanks for clearing the numbers situation up. You're correct that my car is original apart from the engine, although I should imagine that most classic cars have had substantial engine parts replaced at some time if they have been used as they were designed to be. I seem to remember that in the 60's and 70's there were numerous small engineering companies that provided a rebuilt engine exchange service for not a lot of money!!
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PostPost by: miked » Tue Jan 04, 2022 3:40 pm

Bumped due to ongoing discussion and mention of insurance. See page 8 - Kim retired from insurance business and insured a significant amount of us boys when working at Routen Chaplin, named atthelimit on his posting. Most respected and knowledgeable insurance guy I have ever had the pleasure to deal with. Also personally involved with Elans and other Lotus.
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PostPost by: Bits » Sat Jan 15, 2022 4:38 pm

How would someone go about getting a new period correct reg number (not a Q plate) and V5 for an Elan found (rotted in a barn say!) without either of them and just had the VIN plate attached to the body in the engine bay?
Would this be best on a new thread? :D :D
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PostPost by: SimonH » Sat Jan 15, 2022 5:31 pm

Bits wrote:How would someone go about getting a new period correct reg number (not a Q plate) and V5 for an Elan found (rotted in a barn say!) without either of them and just had the VIN plate attached to the body in the engine bay?
Would this be best on a new thread? :D :D

Probably start a new thread. If you look at the correct section for an old car on dvla site, not the radically altered points based bit it will give you an idea of what you need. A letter from lotus and club lotus is a start. Oh and show some pics of your project, always wanted to locate something like that myself
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PostPost by: Bitsilly » Sun Oct 30, 2022 1:05 pm

Bumped again, sorry, but is there a definitive answer on this?

As you possibly know, I just electrified a 1960 Mini and it was declared 'modified ' due to me having drilled holes in the boot and there did not seem to care that it was now electric.
I wasn't allowed to weld up the holes.

Now I am in the process of restoring my Sprint and I am tempted by the Spyder chassis.
It REALLY do not ever to deal with the DVLA again.
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PostPost by: SimonH » Sun Oct 30, 2022 1:24 pm

Spyder subframe you mean? The cars identification is based on the unit number on the plate and the body shell.
Now waiting on someone who usually argues against this.
If you tell the insurance you have one fitted then it’s no different to any other pattern part really. Does exactly the same job with the same suspension hard points and mounting points to the body shell just has a slightly different fabrication method to keep these areas apart.
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PostPost by: Bitsilly » Sun Oct 30, 2022 2:03 pm

Cheers!
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PostPost by: MarkDa » Sun Oct 30, 2022 8:33 pm

Agreed.
The DVLA rules allow significant repairs on a points basis before saying that a vehicle is modified sufficiently to warrant a Q plate.

https://www.gov.uk/vehicle-registration ... t-vehicles

Key element here is that you are keeping the bodyshell and replacing the subframe upon which everything mechanical hangs.
Provided you keep engine and transmission you are clear.
Of course if you use a stressed skin subframe then you could own up to a new chassis - bu why would you when all the 'VIN' data is on the body or body parts.
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PostPost by: MarkDa » Sun Oct 30, 2022 8:42 pm

Going back to the mini I really do think that you could have claimed same number plate as original as a 'radically altered vehicle' if the monocoque was 'original'

https://www.gov.uk/vehicle-registration ... d-vehicles
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