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Headlight Covers

The headlight covers used to be a standard fitment on the Lotus Elise but, due to moisture ingress and beam distortion problems, they were dropped from the options list. They are now available again from the Lotus but, as a part for the Elise Sport which has different lighting bezels to accomodate them. Since the bezels are bonded to the body work, there is no way the bezels can be changed. Fortunately, these covers will fit the standard car without sitting proud of the bodywork and they make the car look much better. My guess is that they also help the cars aerodynamics.

First of all you have to buy both the left and right headlight covers from your dealer. Not all dealers are aware of these parts. They cost about £39.75 + VAT each and the Lotus part numbers are B111U0327F (black left), and B111U0328F (black right). There was a silver metallic edge finish available but its not suplied anymore. I've shown the black finish here. It is the edge finishing tape that will hide the fixing mechanism. The covers are made from perspex which appears to be strengthened in some way and they are about 4mm thick. Investigations have shown minimal distortion due to the curvature of the covers.

Before attempting to fix them, check you've got them the right way round and that they fit reasonably well. Due to the way they are manufactured, they can be slightly out of shape. You must make sure that the drainage holes are clear (picture to follow). Finally, you've got to decide on a method of fitting:

  • The method shown here was to use Sikaflex polyurethane sealant (as used on the Lotus Elise Sport) to stick the covers down and to form a waterproof seal. This will not damaging the paintwork but, removal at a later date will be difficult. Make sure the bodywork is clean and dry, or the sealant won't stick. Too much sealant and it will show around the edges, too little and a seal won't be formed. Once stuck use electical tape to hold them in shape/place until the sealant dries. You can get the Sikaflex sealant from most motor accessory shops (about £11 a tube).
  • Haydon Daytune will fit them for you with a self tapping screw to allow easy removal but charge several hours labour to do this.
  • Another approach is to drill a 2mm hole through the bezel and cover (four per cover), and to bolt through the bodywork using a low profile, round head, stainless steel bolt (almost invisible if painted black/silver to match edge finish). To form a seal a flexible sealing 'ring' will need to be stuck to the cover, underneath the finishing strip. The obvious disadvantage is that you've drilled through the bodywork. Pictures to follow.
The following pictures show the before and after shots with sealant fixing.


Thanks go to the following for technical details and/or images:
Paul Jenkinson
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Copyright © Rob Collingridge 2009 - Last updated 04 Oct 1999