Lotus Elan

Earliest plus2?

PostPost by: tower of strength » Tue May 22, 2007 9:07 pm

I have aquired the body shell and v5 for chassis number 50/0017. Has any one got an earlier one?

Mark
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PostPost by: Jason1 » Wed May 23, 2007 12:54 pm

Ohh that's early.

Are you restoring it?

Jason
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PostPost by: Elanintheforest » Wed May 23, 2007 2:09 pm

I think that a pre-'S' gang is called for here, even if it's just to collect together the bits that are unique to these early cars (I am a hoarder!) and share info on what bits come from what cars. There was a pre-S on ebay only last week...just a shell but with doors, bonnet & boot...would have yielded a lot of goodies and it went for about ?180. Unfortunately I was picking mine up last weekend and didn't have the brainspace to contemplate it.

Chassis 17 left the factory on 14th September '67, which was ahead of the motor show launch which was in October. Do you have any history of the car? Your PM mentioned it was bought as a kit but not registered until 1972...must have been owned by someone with a lot of spare cash!

Got to be worth a call to the factory to see what records they have for it.

Here's my Chassis 50/0032, which looks pretty grotty but has virtually no Gel coat cracks as it was taken off the road in 1978 with 28k miles and a rusty chassis. It was at Mick Millers for a couple of years awaiting its turn for restoration, but was delivered back when Mick unfortunately died.

Jason...do you know what car the door locks / catches came off? And internal handle? Ross / Robinshaw has the handle as a Cortina item, but My '66 Cortina GT has quite different handles, and locks / catches come to that.

Pictures required Mark....
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PostPost by: Matt » Wed May 23, 2007 2:50 pm

I spoke to lotus tech about the car a few days ago and was told it was the first car that wasn't "ours" when I asked what he ment by that I was told the 1st ones went to sales, lotus staff and key lotus contacts. so it looks like it's the 1st one sold to a customer !

Mark has now acquired the rest of the car

Mark please please restore it !
1967 Elan S3
1970 Elan S4 Sprint
1972 Europa TC
1973 Elan +2 s130/5
1978 Esprit S1
1981 Esprit S2.2
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PostPost by: kenny » Wed May 23, 2007 3:05 pm

Were the outer handles not Austin 1100 and the inners Riley elf. Mines a pre S 1968 car and is fitted with these and similar to the above stories came off the road in 1979 with a rotten chassis.

Kenny
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PostPost by: paul_adamson » Wed May 23, 2007 5:23 pm

Sometime in the early 1990's, I went to see a Plus 2 that was in the village of Hambleton in Lancashire.

As far as I can remember it was 50/0003.

Now, that's early.

I think that 50/0001 and 0002 used stretched Elan bodies and these where destroyed by the factory.

In other words I think that 50/0003 is the first one that looked like a Plus 2.

I have no idea what chassis number was on the "Metier?" prototype.
Does someone else know?

Paul.
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PostPost by: Elanintheforest » Wed May 23, 2007 5:53 pm

I don't think that the Metier or Metier 2 were ever road registered, so probably didn't have any form of chassis ID. If they did, it would relate to 1964 / 1965. sequnce or just a one-off 'prototype' number.

Have a look at the chassis numbers / release dates in the Sports Car World Plus 2 Chassis number table:

http://www.sportscarworld-lotus.com/T%2 ... N%20+2.pdf

they are all over the place. My '32' is 2 months out of sequence to '31' and '33'. It was a factory demonstrator, so was either on trade plates for a couple of months or 'borrowed' the registration from another demonstrator. Or it could have had defects which pushed it to the back of the queue for release, which apparently wasn't uncommon.

Kenny, the outers were certainly 1100 sourced, I'll dig out the brochures of the Elf and see if I can find any pics of the internal handles....so maybe the catch / lock thigee was also BMC of some sort? We'll figure it I'm sure.

I have an original 1967 Parts list for the Plus 2 if anyone needs a picture from it scanning...I'll have a re-look at the door bits and pieces and see if anything can be gleened.

I put up a couple of press photos in the gallery a few days ago...one of a very early Plus 2...wonder which one it is!!

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PostPost by: Jason1 » Wed May 23, 2007 8:00 pm

Hi

Mine is one of the first of the later type being built in August 1968 so has the same BL external and internal door handles as the S.

I would have loved to get an early car (external boot handle + Alfa rear lights) when I was looking, but just could not find one :cry: I am happy with mine and I am currently looking for a new barn with a house (I mean house with a barn). :D When the new space permits I will look for an early car to accompany my Blue one.

Not sure about the handles as mine is not that early but I will see what I can find on the net.

Jason
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PostPost by: theelanman » Wed May 23, 2007 9:17 pm

IIRC you could get the early +2 as a kit too.....
think this lasted about 12 months before they decided to make it a factory only make......was something to do with a tax dodge....
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PostPost by: dusty » Wed May 23, 2007 10:06 pm

Elanintheforest wrote:I have an original 1967 Parts list for the Plus 2


Where did you get that? I'm looking for one for my March '68 car
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PostPost by: Elanintheforest » Thu May 24, 2007 7:18 am

I got it from the usual place...eBay. But this was eBay USA...it was in New York, and nobody else bid on it...got it for about $15 I think. Tha later ones come up quite often on eBay UK, and they have all the early stuff in there as well.
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PostPost by: Robbie693 » Thu May 24, 2007 9:26 am

IIRC you could get the early +2 as a kit too.....
think this lasted about 12 months before they decided to make it a factory only make......was something to do with a tax dodge....


From what I remember from various books, the first car Lotus produced that wasn't available in kit form was the +2S. It came about with the introduction of VAT, so ending the sales tax dodge Colin came up with..
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PostPost by: fasterbyelan » Thu May 24, 2007 9:42 am

Robbie693 wrote:
IIRC you could get the early +2 as a kit too.....
think this lasted about 12 months before they decided to make it a factory only make......was something to do with a tax dodge....


From what I remember from various books, the first car Lotus produced that wasn't available in kit form was the +2S. It came about with the introduction of VAT, so ending the sales tax dodge Colin came up with..


If I remember correctly, the +2S was aimed at the person unlikely to want to assembly the car themselves and/or wealthy enough to pay the full price. The date purchase tax was dropped and VAT introduced happened later (1973).
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PostPost by: fasterbyelan » Thu May 24, 2007 10:17 am

Elanintheforest wrote:I don't think that the Metier or Metier 2 were ever road registered, so probably didn't have any form of chassis ID. If they did, it would relate to 1964 / 1965. sequnce or just a one-off 'prototype' number.


Mark


I'm sure I've read recently that Ron Hickman used the Metier for a year prior to the car being sold. To be street legal it would I believe need to have a chassis number. Further the car is currently being restored, a post last year mentions Spyder Engineering as the workshop involved.

I think Coterie Press's book 'The Lotus Book S3' by W. Taylor is my source but not having my books to hand I cannot check.
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PostPost by: Jason1 » Thu May 24, 2007 12:17 pm

Hi

Wasn't the early external door handle a Austin 1100/ 1300??

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