Lotus Elan

Lotus Elan 1500 Brochure

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Constructed around a backbone of racing experience......

Years of painstaking design, research and experience have reached their spectacular conclusion in the production of the Lotus Elan. Even to the untrained eye the sleek and crisp styling of the glassfibre-reinforced-plastic coachwork immediately creates the impression of a beautifully balanced motor car. Compact, yet spacious, fast but also quiet and docile, superbly finished and equipped but low in price. The Lotus Elan represents so great an advance in sports car design as t be unique. From its precision engineered twin overhead camshaft engine to its functional foam filled bumpers this car portrays a totally new outlook in automotive engineering. Numerous features of the Lotus Elan are indirectly conceived from it renowned sister - the Lotus Elite - and backed by the design resources of today's most successful manufacture of specialised performance cars, Lotus present a safe, proven, economical and unbelievably exciting sports car well worthy of the reputation which has made the marque world famous.

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step inside

Full length, wide opening doors give ease of entry for driver and passenger. The compact form of the Lotus Elan belies the well appointed spacious interior with fully adjustable, deep squab-shaped bucket seats for driver and passenger, plus occasional seeing for a child. Alternatively, this space will accommodate a carry-cot. Sliding side windows, precise door locks, glove compartment and map pockets are further features of the Elan's interior design.

The sloping bonnet provides completely unobstructed vision of the road ahead. A glance at the instruments is all that is needed o obtain accurate readings. A longer look reveals elegant, sensibly placed instrumentation with all controls within easy reach of the driver on the weather resistant oiled teak facia panel, which is itself a structural member of the car. The bonnet is released by two pull controls on the facia thus avoiding the necessity to unfasten the safety harness when oil and water levels are being checked. Provision is made for a very powerful fresh air type heater/demister unit to ensure maximum comfort in all climates.

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Considerable thought has been applied to the placing of the seats in relation to drivers of varying heights. With the seat in it furthest forward position, the squab is at it highest point and the backrest more upright, in the rearward positions the squab is lower and the backrest slightly reclining. This system ensures clear vision of the road ahead, and perfect accessibility for foot pedals and controls.

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Fantastic acceleration combining with amazing docility

The engine of the Lotus elan is completely new design, yet it has combined traditional Ford reliability and low running costs with the brilliant and exclusive Lotus twin overhead camshaft light alloy cylinder head already proven in international motor competition. The Lotus Elan has a short stroke engine, with five crankshaft main bearings, yielding high torque and power at low piston speeds. This results in long life and remarkable smoothness of operation throughout the engine's entire rev. range. Specifically designed and developed to provide really sparkling performance with quiet trouble free operation. Lotus and Ford are combined in the production of the most advanced and successful light sports car engine in the world.

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(See image for Engine Specifications)

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Absolutely precise steering and road handling

The road-holding, steering and braking qualities of Lotus cars are already legendary in the world of motoring. Designed and developed by the Lotus design team, led by Colin Chapman, the chassis and suspension of the Lotus Elan derive many inherent characteristics from Lotus Sports and formula One racing cars. Although the Lotus elan is not a racing car, the inbuilt qualities of reliable braking power combined with high speed control-ability under all conditions, certainly contribute to the car's high safety factor.

The heart of the Lotus Elan is an immensely strong and torsionally stiff welded steel backbone chassis. fully independent load compensating wishbone/coilspring suspension is employed on all four wheels and baking is by hydraulically operated calipers on 9 1/2 inch diameter discs on the front wheels; the 10 inch diameter rear discs are of Lotus design. Telescopic shock absorbers, rubber cushioned drive and suspension mountings provide incredibly smooth ad vibration free motoring on all types of road surface. Highly responsive rack and pinion steering is employed, and the column is of the fully adjustable collapsible type. The transmission contains a four speed gearbox with synchromesh on all four forward rations. Regular chassis greasing points have been eliminated on the Lotus Elan, cutting considerably the costs of routine servicing.

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Chassis Specifications

Welded steel backbone type, fully rust protected.
Front Suspension
Unequal length wishbones, independent, coil spring telescopic shock absorbers.
Rear Suspension
Fully independent by wide based wishbones, coil springs and telescopic shock absorbers.
Hydraulically operated calipers on 9 1/2 inch diameter discs on front wheels. 10 inch diameter discs on rear. Hand brake operating on rear wheels only.
Four forward speeds and reverse. Synchromesh on all forward raios. Oil capacity 1 1/2 imp. pints (2.1 U.S. pints, 0.99 litres).
Final Drive
Chassis mounted typoid unit, sound insulated. Oil capacity 2 imp. pints (2.4 U.S. pints, 1.13 litres).
Rack and pinion with telescopic and collapsible steering column. Optional right or left hand drive. 15 inch diameter dished wood-rimmed steering wheel. 2 1/2 turns lock to lock.
13 inch diameter special Lotus igh speed pressed steel. Four stud fixing. Bright metal hub caps.
 ??? x 13.
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Retractable Headlamps
To facilitate a lower wing line, giving uninterrupted vision of the road ahead to within a few feet from the front of the car, a retractable headlamp system has been devised. Each headlamp is coupled to a vacuum cylinder which is in turn coupled to a vacuum cylinder which is in turn coupled to a vacuum reservoir of ample proportions, the whole system activated by manifold depression. The fingertip control switch for the headlamps is conveniently situated on the facia panel and incorporates a flashing device for daytime use. When the headlamps are locked in a raised position they comply with the regulation distance from the ground to lamp centre line.
Foam Filled Bumpers
Full width resilient Polyurethane foam filled glassfibre bumpers are fitted front and rear, and will no crack, dent or bend on minor impact.
Luggage Accommodation
A separate lockable luggage compartment is provided at the rear of the car with carpeted floor to accept suitcases, etc. and additional soft luggage can be stowed in the space behind the seats.
Weather Protection
A completely weatherproof P.V.C. fabric hood is provided as standard equipment. Separate clip-on glassfibre reinforced plastic 'Cant' rails surround the side window apertures and carry the hood supporting rails. A P.V.C. strip along the front of the hood fits snugly into a recess along the top of the windscreen rail and a solid rail running around the rear of the hood below the flexible rear window panels is located by hood retaining lugs mounted on the body. Additional clip on fasteners ensure complete draughtproofing.
Engine Accessibility
The bonnet is self opening when release by two pull controls on the facia, pivoting on nylon runners, affording accessibility for routine engine servicing. If required, the complete bonnet can be easily detached from the car in under ten seconds.
The body is available in a choice of four colours: Carmen Red, Fiesta Yellow, Medici Blue and Cirrus White. All cars are fitted with Atlas Grey and Beige trim panels: Tan, Grey and Black seats are optional, trimmed in washable Vynide material. Attractive grey flecked rubber floor-covering is fitted, tastefully toning with all the trim and body options, thus presenting a completely water resistant and washable interior.
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(See image for Elan dimension data.)