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SR
10-10-2002, 12:23 PM
Hello...

My first post here. I have been thinking about a Brit SC for years now and am exploring the Elan.

What years were they made ?

What is the difference between S1, S2, S3, S4 ?
are there any others numbers I need to know ?

Do they all carry the Lotus twin cam motor ?

Are any years "bad" or "good" ?

What is a price range for an V good condition daily driver car, restored or not. I don't need a show car though ?

Thanks in advance for any help.

Steve

78Z
10-10-2002, 01:13 PM
Check out http://www.lotuselan.net/buying_guides/ for a couple of different on line buying guides.

<blockquote><font size="1" face="Verdana, Arial">quote:</font><hr>
The series-1, introduced in 1962, was powered by a 1500cc Lotus twin-cam, A 1558cc unit was introduced a year later and old models were recalled to have it fitted. The 1964 series-2 had creature comforts such as wood veneer on the dashboard, a lockable glove compartment and, outside, clustered rear lights. The coupe was shown as the series-3 in 1965, its bootlid extended to stop leaks and its battery repositioned inside the boot: electric windows were now standard.

In 1966, series-3 improvements were introduced on the convertible, including door window frames. Special Equipment models were distinguished by 115bhp output, close-ratio gearbox, servo-assisted brakes and centre-lock road wheels. The series-4 in 1968 brought low profile tyres, flared wheel-arches, new rocker - switched dashboard, +2 rear light clusters and a bonnet bulge. The ultimate Elan, the S4 Sprint from 1971, boasted 126bhp and two tone paintwork, while the differential and driveshafts were uprated to handle the extra power.
<hr></blockquote>

more specific info here: http://www.lotuselan.net/faq/which_one.htm

There is also a 2+2 if you require a backseat. Styling more anglular and not as good imo.

Good Luck!

coldplugs
10-10-2002, 02:50 PM
<blockquote><font size="1" face="Verdana, Arial">quote:</font><hr>Originally posted by SR:

Do they all carry the Lotus twin cam motor ?

Are any years "bad" or "good" ?

What is a price range for an V good condition daily driver car, restored or not. I don't need a show car though ?

Steve<hr></blockquote>

78Z gave you the best sources I know of for most of your questions. Yes, they all had the Lotus twin cam. The head changed a bit through the years but not significantly.

No years have an especially good or bad reputation. People seem to want the Weber carb'ed cars rather than the later Strombergs but the Strombergs were actually more effective for road use.

Price probably varies by location but I'd guess bottoms out at about $10000 US with Coupes cheaper than roadsters. The most important thing to look at is the frame, which is a light gauge sheet metal backbone. They often rust, mostly at the front where they don't get much oil residue.

Great cars for the committed enthusiast...

nevets
10-29-2002, 09:58 AM
I have owned an Elan S1 for about 5 years now. It was in VG condition when I bought it and has given me few problems. I went for the S1 because of its purity of design...ie: it lacks the obtrusive window frames. If I had to do it over I might go for the later Sprint model because of the more powerful engine and knock-off wheels. But overall, the model differences are not that great. Unlike some other British sportscars, a Lotus is somewhat frail and tempermental, and requires more routine attention...especially if one is to drive it frequently. Anyone who uses an Elan as a daily driver has my respect.

Buy carefully, there are a lot of dogs out there. My buying advice, as with any collector car, is to buy the very best car you can. The cost of making a fair car good will be far greater than buying a good one to begin with.

Good luck!

Roger
10-29-2002, 03:53 PM
Everybody's already said most relevant stuff, but I thought I'd just comment on 78Z's post.
The 1500 motor never made it into series production - they're all 1558.
The later Sprints, BTW, were much more powerful back home (in UK) than here. Here, they retained the S4 Strombergs. I've been doing some reading recently and was surprised by the difference.

[ 10-29-2002: Message edited by: Roger ]</p>

TypeRboy
10-30-2002, 01:25 AM
You can also put different rims under the S3/4 if you want to play around, but the only thing narrow enough for the S1/2 is the stock rims..

The S1 and S2 both have the frameless window doors. My S2 has knockoffs so you don't need to get a later one if you want this option, just need to have a bit of luck hunting around.

I agree that you need to find the very best car you can afford,and stretch a bit if you find a restored car.. The money and time will have already been spent for you.. Mine alone was over two years at a stady pace to restore.. And In the end I worked for less than nothing I'm sure.. graemlins/lol.gif

nevets
10-30-2002, 09:47 AM
Regarding rims...I have Panasports on my S1 Elan. They're wider than stock, but no rubbing on the wheel arches.

TypeRboy
10-30-2002, 08:44 PM
Oops.. I stand corrected.. on mine with the stock rims and 165 sr 13 tires I can't slip my fingers between the rear tire and the wheel arch.. But I guess if there are some rims out there about the same width and offset as stock than they will work fine..( I didn't think there were any, good to know..)

Super 7
01-11-2003, 03:08 AM
Personnally, I would stay away from the knock offs.

They are great cars.

Sometimes I hear people say that strombergs are better for the street. I say strombergs are better for the trash. Unfortunately, the intake manifold is cast into the head, so you can't easily change over. One friend of mine ran SU's on his Stromberg headed Locort.

A Delorrto equipped SE is probably a great bet.

Elans are dynamically excellent.

TypeRboy
01-11-2003, 09:43 PM
My experience with Stromberg carbs is that at wide open throttle the power is no less than the Webers..

It's the part throttle response that is weaker, as well as the Strombergs with emissions intact can have some flat spots, and poor cold running characteristics. On a track, the differences are not so noticable ( with no emissions..) Some SU carbs are a good alternative, as well as having the head converted to a Weber intake.

According to Dave Bean, the Weber converted head will flow better than the stock Weber head, so how about that!

I think his price for the conversion is $1000..
But I could be wrong. The heads are converted for them by a gentleman who lives over here in BC, so you might be able to get it done for CDN money with no middleman markup..

Super 7
01-12-2003, 01:37 AM
I believe that the fellow doing the conversions for Dave Bean is the same guy in Bellingham with the MK I Cortina with BDA and Volvo overdrive. He bought my old MK I GT. Dave Bean can probably help you contact him. I have lost my contact for him, alas.

My only personal experience with Strombergs was on a Jag, and it was not that positive. I know that it is popular to replace them with webers on all cars that came with them. There are kits for everything from Mercedes to Volvo to Jensen, all popular.

Unlike Twincams, most engines don't need a head in order to accomplish this conversion, so many soldier on with the strombergs. Mark Viskov used to vintage race a nice MK II Cortina with Stromberg head and S.U.'s. It ran well. (He now races an even nicer MK I Escort BDA).

You may note that nobody is offering to convert weber heads to Stromberg heads.

That said, any Elan motor is a good one. Most people have a strong preference for Weber heads though.

Isn't your '66 a weber head?

I have the original Stromberg head from my last Elan + 2, which I sold to Chris Beebe, kicking around in the garage. The original owner converted it to Webers at initial purchase.

The Delorrto's have 5 pregression holes, and as such, have an easier transion than Webers (three progression holes) off idle. They can be run much leaner as a result, as excess richness is not needed to cover flat spots. Bean is pretty high on the Delorrto's.

P.
<blockquote><font size="1" face="Verdana, Arial">quote:</font><hr>Originally posted by TypeRboy:
My experience with Stromberg carbs is that at wide open throttle the power is no less than the Webers..

It's the part throttle response that is weaker, as well as the Strombergs with emissions intact can have some flat spots, and poor cold running characteristics. On a track, the differences are not so noticable ( with no emissions..) Some SU carbs are a good alternative, as well as having the head converted to a Weber intake.

According to Dave Bean, the Weber converted head will flow better than the stock Weber head, so how about that!

I think his price for the conversion is $1000..
But I could be wrong. The heads are converted for them by a gentleman who lives over here in BC, so you might be able to get it done for CDN money with no middleman markup..<hr></blockquote>

[ 01-11-2003: Message edited by: Super 7 ]</p>

TypeRboy
01-12-2003, 04:25 AM
The Weber conversion guy is John MccCoy @
360 671 1472. I see now that it is a Washington phone#, not in Canada..

Yes the Stromberg heads are not highly sought after.. I have three of them myself.

I always liked the Del'orto carbs.. Ran them on more than a few Datsun's.. I have a brand new pair for my BDA..still in the plastic images/icons/tongue.gif

RACMGA
01-14-2003, 07:17 PM
Hey buddy , they are spoken for.....
Have you sorted out your webers yet? graemlins/cheers.gif

TypeRboy
01-15-2003, 01:26 AM
Don't worry, I'm not selling any.I also have some Mikuni's that I am going to try out..

No.. I haven't pulled the carb apart yet. With all the fiber glass work I am doing, I don't want the carb to get dirty sitting on the bench..

Dave Thielke
01-26-2003, 03:17 PM
SR, looks like you are getting into an interesting project. It's been a long time since I played around with elans, but they were a lot of fun, especially suckering corvettes in at stoplights.
A few of the oddities I remember were that the early ones had push up door windows with a scissors and spring mechanism, while the later ones used an electric motor and cable which was always coming loose.
The early elans also had the headlamps held up by vacuum. Under hard acceleration they would drop down, just what you wanted at night on a windy road. We had the factory revamp the system so the vacuum closed them and a spring held them up. After a bit of overnight leakage, they looked pretty sleepy in the mornings.
I'm sure that you won't find one that still has the orriginal plastic tee in the fuel line between the webber carbs, but if you do, throw it as far as you can, as they cracked and sprayed gas all over. I don't remember any fires, but I replaced a lot of them in our shop.
They were a bit tempermental, but one heck of a fun car, ENJOY.
If I could figure out how, I could send a few pics from long ago.

Dave T bluspit@attbi.com

coldplugs
01-26-2003, 07:11 PM
<blockquote><font size="1" face="Verdana, Arial">quote:</font><hr>Originally posted by Dave Thielke:
..., while the later ones used an electric motor and cable which was always coming loose..
<hr></blockquote>

You're right about that! I suspect the photo below will rekindle a memory...


http://home.maine.rr.com/jhcphoto/images/passwin3.jpg

Dave Thielke
01-27-2003, 01:03 AM
John C
You're right, the photo sure brings back a lot of memories. I could boor you all for hours, but another time.
Lots of old photos but haven't figured out how to share them yet, working on it.
Thanks
Dave T
bluspit@attbi.com

TypeRboy
01-28-2003, 04:41 AM
I'm glad I have an S1.. That reminds me of the window mechanism in our old Fiat Beta..

It was very hard to roll up and down..