Here we have a British design classic and co-star of multiple James Bond Films the Lotus Esprit. With only 3 owners and 28000 miles on the clock, it is in fantastic useable condition and is ready to pressed in to service this summer.
Among the longest running of post-war British sports cars, the Esprit first surfaced as a Giorgetto Giugiaro-designed Ital Design project car at the 1972 Turin Motor Show, the silver prototype having come about following a chance encounter between Giugiaro and Lotus boss Colin Chapman. The car was well received, and following a protracted development program finally entered production in 1976. The Esprit retained Lotus's trademark backbone chassis but deviated from previous designs by employing front and rear sub-frames to support the all-independent suspension and engine/gearbox unit. The Esprit metamorphosed through several series over the next two decades, gaining a 2.2-liter engine, turbo-charged induction and a new body design along the way.
Unveiled in 1987, the Peter Stevens redesign of the venerable Lotus Esprit saw the mid-engined rocketship's sharp edges softened, the interior revamped and the mechanical specification improved. Indeed, the Esprit was now a genuine supercar contender, with over 160mph available from the Special Equipment model of 1989, largely thanks to the adoption of a water to air intercooler on the 2.2-liter four. In 1993, Lotus further updated the Esprit with exterior styling by Julian Thompson. Relatively minor changes to the front and rear bumpers, side skirts and a new wheel design were nicely resolved and the Esprit's dramatic styling was suitably updated for a new decade.
It wasn't until 1995 that the mechanical specification came in for change; when the S4 was replaced by the S4S power jumped to 300bhp, with 290 lbs./ft. of torque on tap. To achieve these figures, Lotus made changes to the cylinder head, enlarged the inlet ports and fitted an updated ECM and Garret AiResearch T3/60 turbocharger. This added up to serious on road performance, with 0-60 mph dispatched in a mere 4.6 seconds on the way to a top speed of 168 mph – impressive numbers in anyone's language. Equally impressive was the handling, with a 0.91g figure achieved on the skidpan. The S4S was distinguished by the larger rear wing from the Sport 300, new OZ five-spoke alloy rims and Brembo brakes, having the distinction of being the end of the line for the four cylinder Esprit. Despite its age, The Autocar magazine loved the new Lotus, concluding with the comment: "...the Lotus Esprit S4S is, for the moment, the most complete British sports car – period.”
Our car starts easily and runs very well. It handles exactly how one would expect a Lotus to handle sharp and focused. The car is fitted with the original OZ alloy wheels which are in good condition. The car comes with a raft of MOTs and old invoices confirming work carried out over the last 10 years and the original owners manual with service book. Aside from the occasional stone chip the Silk Red paint is in very good condition, as is the interior with the leather being split free and supple.
With only 3 long term owners and a well documented history warranting its low mileage this is a Lotus Esprit which will not hang around for long. Please be quick if you think that this car is for you.