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My Lotus Diary January 2002

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3rd January 2002

As of today the Elise S2 Sport 135 upgrade is officially available for £1750 including fitting and VAT. In the words of EVO Magazine this represents a bit of a bargain compared to the previous S1 offering. New cars ordered can have this fitted by the Lotus Motorsport division at Hethel. This includes some optional decals. Personally, I'd hoped this would be the standard power output for the S2 from day one but it goes someway to address the issues of those with higher power variants of the S1. Those that order between the 3rd Jan and 7th Feb can get this at the bargain price of 995, a market ploy to shift new cars in the middle of winter. There also seems to be some restriction on numbers due certification issues but I don't know the whole story behind this yet.

7th January 2002

Lotus don't do themselves any favours, Other than the 'first on the road' factor, there is no real incentive to be the first to buy a new Lotus car, as the S2 Elise has proven. Not only do you get the headaches of intial production and development issues, you get the production delays and dealer mis-information. Then to rub salt into the wounds, Lotus offer the 135bhp upgrade at a discount price to new orders only. I bet a similar tale occurs with the hardtop, when it finally arrives. Some sort of offer to those that made the early comittment ought to be made, after all, they been driving around with 120bhp for six to nine months and may well be in a better position to use and enjoy it.

In this months EVO magazine they get hold of a Turbo Technics S190 S2 Elise and really rate it. A few more rumours on Lotus upgrades are still doing the rounds with a S160 due in March followed by a S190 with Toyota engine and 6-speed gearbox if they are to believed.

10th January 2002

Very interesting story on a proposal from GM for a small compact sports car. Full story on PistonheadsRemote site but a couple of the pictures show it to be a beautiful looking concept:

Kind of Jaguar F-type combined with VX220 and a hint of TVR Tamora. No indication of weight and the huge wheels don't bode well for handling. I also can't see how the 240bhp engine stays cool, there being no air vents at all.

25th January 2002

It's official at last. The Elise will be going to the USA (due late 2003), with a new 120bhp engine (not K-series), softer suspension (oh dear!) and leather and aircon as standard. Price is expected to be around $38,500 (sounds expensive by American standards). The down side for the Americans is that is will be a replacement for the Esprit.

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