Lotus Elan

is it possible to get a (good) Sprint for less than 40K?

PostPost by: S3FHC » Tue Jul 04, 2017 11:09 am

rgh0 wrote:
el-saturn wrote:i may be the only s3 owner who a) doesn't mind (actually love) the <a class="vglnk" target="_blank" href="http://www.ebay.com/sch/i.html?_nkw=window" rel="nofollow"><span>window</span></a> frames and b) i personally prefer my rear vauxhall lights to the later (large) ones and the s1/s2 are a colin compromise: too much of a KIT CAR ............. plus the s3 is much more a finished car!! sandy - just my personal opinion!



Hi Sandy
Personally I think the S3 non airflow FHC is the best looking Elan and as a practical classic as usable as any of the Elans. In reality any Elan can be brought up to a Sprint or better mechanical specification at no extra cost during a rebuild so the difference you pay for between a Sprint and the various early series of cars is all based on appearance and things like racing demand in S1/2 and perceptions of value from an uneducated public.... but perception is reality so that's where the money goes :lol:

cheers
Rohan


I have to agree.... (although I am somewhat biaised!)

I also believe that the S3 Coupe is the most elegant and practical.
It has better rear lights, the chrome plated door frames and interior door parts add a touch of class to the car's appearance and the coupe roof gives the car a more distinguished, elegant appearance reminiscent of the Elite.
The coupe is only made prettier if the car is an earlier pre-airflow model as they have the earlier slender boot hinges and obviously no airflow vents in the roof.
The cleaner the lines the better in my opinion, so I prefer no repeater indicators on the front wings or the chrome sill strips which were often added (SE trim?)

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PostPost by: Spyder fan » Wed Jul 05, 2017 9:43 am

This looks nice http://www.carandclassic.co.uk/car/C885789
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And this looks nicer, but auction estimate of 40 - 50k + 15% premium puts it beyond the brief of the original poster http://www.carandclassic.co.uk/car/C888807
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PostPost by: S3FHC » Wed Jul 05, 2017 10:42 am

both beautiful examples!
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PostPost by: pereirac » Thu Jul 06, 2017 5:51 pm

Regarding values, prices of classic cars seem to be based on originality these days. Yes you can restore a S3 or S4 car to be better than a Sprint but it will never be a Sprint. Only a limited number of Sprints were made and these are the only 'Sprints' which is why their values are higher than say S4s. If you want a Sprint buy one but you may well pay a premium for one. You could find a 'better' S3 or S4 for less but it's not a Sprint. It's the same reason people pay £120k+ for a Mark 1 E-Types but you can pick up a later model for much less. I would suggest that a well restored original spec S4 is worth more than an S4 trying to look like a Sprint?

It's strange, if I remember correctly, the Sprint model was created as a way for Lotus to market cars which were not selling very well...

Whoever said the values of classic cars was logical! :-)

Carl
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PostPost by: pabbage » Fri Jul 07, 2017 3:07 am

Great comments - thanks everyone. And two lovely examples posted - very tempted to sell everything I own for the red one!

Couple more questions if you don't mind…

What is it that makes the difference between a 40k and 48k sprint being sold by a dealer? I'm looking at a few online and I really struggle to see why one dealers sprint commands such a premium over another. Would you need to see it in the flesh to make the jump in price or are some dealers just setting their prices high expecting 10-15% reduction (maybe more) after negotiations?

And should it be worrying that some cars have been for sale for such a long time with a dealer - does this instantly mean the cars not worth the price or that there is something wrong with it? For example this https://hiltonandmoss.com/cars/lotus-el ... -1972-fhc/ seems to have been for sale for a very long time but it looks nice (perhaps tawny is not for everyone) and is in budget (33K). It does seems a lot of these are well known to the community here. But on the other hand some cars with Paul Matty just seem to sell the very next day!

:?
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PostPost by: tvacc » Fri Jul 07, 2017 4:14 am

Sort of confused here. I have one completely original car at about 34 ,000 pounds
I am one of most well known Lotus guys and you are looking at cars 8 k more than mine.

You may not know me, but most of the guys on the list know me. I have shipped cars all over the world.

Hey, if you don't want this car, OK, but you have not even requested more information.

Unless you want a right drive, which this one is not.

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PostPost by: pereirac » Fri Jul 07, 2017 9:05 am

pabbage wrote:Great comments - thanks everyone. And two lovely examples posted - very tempted to sell everything I own for the red one!

Couple more questions if you don't mind…

What is it that makes the difference between a 40k and 48k sprint being sold by a dealer? I'm looking at a few online and I really struggle to see why one dealers sprint commands such a premium over another. Would you need to see it in the flesh to make the jump in price or are some dealers just setting their prices high expecting 10-15% reduction (maybe more) after negotiations?

And should it be worrying that some cars have been for sale for such a long time with a dealer - does this instantly mean the cars not worth the price or that there is something wrong with it? For example this https://hiltonandmoss.com/cars/lotus-el ... -1972-fhc/ seems to have been for sale for a very long time but it looks nice (perhaps tawny is not for everyone) and is in budget (33K). It does seems a lot of these are well known to the community here. But on the other hand some cars with Paul Matty just seem to sell the very next day!

:?


With prices being so variable I think some dealer just put a high price to see if anybody 'takes the bait'. On more expensive cars dealers seem to love 'hiding' their prices and putting POA instead. Mileage is not everything, bodywork is expensive to restore, has one car had a new chassis, is the car on a Spyder chassis or a Lotus chassis, has the engine been rebuilt, is there any history, is the dealer a 'known' Elan dealer? Too many questions.

I recently discovered that a 'full service history'" means there is a record of the services done on the car. It does not mean that the car had been serviced regularly. So if my Elan had had one oil change in 10 years and I had a record of when it was done then I could sell the car with a 'full service history'!!

I assume you have seen this car as it appears to be more 'local' to you..
https://www.pistonheads.com/classifieds/used-cars/lotus/elan-pre-76/lotus-elan-sprint--6-000-miles/6044720. It looks like a US model which has had the emission control bits removed. By the way, single colour Sprints used to cost extra compared with the usual two colour versions. It would be interesting to know how much the dealer is asking?

Good luck with your search.

Carl
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PostPost by: jimj » Fri Jul 07, 2017 12:53 pm

Pabbage, are you really in the Middle East or are you a joker and live in Norfolk? If the former then, definitely, look at US cars which are much cheaper. The Dubai one is, I think, £65K.
The differences in prices may be, should be, a combination of condition, originality and provenance. For example; a Sprint with a walnut dashboard may look very nice but it`s just not correct and it costs £1000 to have someone change it. Even a Spyder chassis, which some say is better, detracts from the price of a top end car, i.e. one over £45K. You pays your money and takes your choice.
We have a well used S3 in nice condition which is probably worth, say, £30K (not for sale) and an immaculate, original spec. low mileage Sprint worth more than 50% more. I`ve been out in the Sprint quite a bit these last few weeks but the fact is that I`m more "comfortable" using the less precious S3.
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PostPost by: pereirac » Fri Jul 07, 2017 1:01 pm

Don't forget US road cars tend to have different heads with Stromberg carbs ...and extra 'safety' features not found on European models :D
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PostPost by: pabbage » Fri Jul 07, 2017 1:03 pm

I'm working in the Middle East but have a home in the UK... and the car is for the uk so I'd prefer a Rhd. I did make an enquiry into the Dubai sprint - I was told 80k ....

The reason I've looked mainly at dealers is because I have a caterham to trade and my time in the uk is limited. This forum has certainly helped me begin to understand the intiricate elan market! Thanks everyone!
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PostPost by: pereirac » Fri Jul 07, 2017 1:46 pm

You could try John Bellenger at Allon White Sportcars near Cranfield https://allonwhite.co.uk. They sometimes have Elans in or may be able to find one for you. They might also be interested in your Caterham? If not they will happily sell you a Morgan :-)

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PostPost by: RogerFrench » Fri Jul 07, 2017 1:52 pm

tvacc wrote:I have a Sprint here in the States you can have for 44K US$. That is less than 40K pounds.

Car is very nice and completely original. It is an original car so while it is being driven semi-regularly I would replace the rubber brake seals, possibly suspension bushings and donuts. We were going to go with the Trikbits set but last I checked they were on back order.

It belongs to my friend and have not spoke to him in about 3 months but I still think he wants to sell.

Tony V
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A Federal spec. Sprint is less interesting than a UK one, though.
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PostPost by: tvacc » Fri Jul 07, 2017 2:24 pm

Yes, I agree. I forgot about the carb difference. I would prefer one with Webers as well. But for the difference in money you could certainly upgrade to a Weber head and Weber Carbs. As long as you keep the Stromberg head, there would be no decrease in value, and perhaps an increase.

Outside of the few US Federal safety things, and of course the LHD, after that I believe the cars are the same. If you are living in the UK I am sure you want RHD.
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