Lotus Elan

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

PostPost by: pabbage » Mon Jul 03, 2017 10:21 am

Hi all,

I've been looking for a little while now for a good Sprint (either DHC or FHC) for less than 40K. I think I may well have missed the boat here…. is is still possible? Or should I budget for another 10K?

I've managed to find these three for under 40K but they've all been for sale for rather a long time :?

https://www.graypaulclassiccars.com/veh ... nt-yellow/

https://paulmattysportscars.co.uk/lotus-elan-sprint/

https://www.beaulieugarage.co.uk/copy-of-a-template-9

Any thoughts on any of these? They all look like they need a bit of work in some form or another.

Thanks in advance - or if you have any links to any for sale I'd appreciate it.
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PostPost by: rgh0 » Mon Jul 03, 2017 12:04 pm

They all look like OK cars to me. What they are worth depends on close inspection and the market your in. The market in the USA/ Canada and Australia has cars at significantly lower price than in the UK at the moment. Any Elan you buy is an old car now so you need to decide on how much work you want to do versus pay for work someone else has done ( well or not so well)

Personally I feel there is not enough difference between a sprint and the earlier S3 / S4 cars to warrant any real price difference. An S4 in better condition is worth more than a sprint in lesser condition IMHO. Sprints tend to attract a premium due to "being the last version" for no real reason.

S1 and S2 cars will attract a premium compared to a S3/4/sprint cars due to their rarity and potential historic race use in Europe under FIA regulations that allow 26R replicas based on S1 or S2 cars. Otherwise they are a a cruder road car and should be worth less

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PostPost by: el-saturn » Mon Jul 03, 2017 12:24 pm

i may be the only s3 owner who a) doesn't mind (actually love) the window 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!
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PostPost by: rgh0 » Mon Jul 03, 2017 12:36 pm

el-saturn wrote:i may be the only s3 owner who a) doesn't mind (actually love) the window 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:

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PostPost by: pabbage » Mon Jul 03, 2017 12:40 pm

Thanks for the input Rohan and Sandy - I shall revisit the other models! Perhaps I'm Sprint obsessed!
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PostPost by: jimj » Mon Jul 03, 2017 12:57 pm

Irrespective of opinion, Sprints are worth more, the market dictates price not necessarily value. Earlier this year I helped a pal with the purchase of a Sprint. I looked at the description and pics. of the first 2 in your post and didn`t think they were quite good enough. The Beaulieu one has been discussed on here, not flatteringly but seems reasonable value.
S4s are the best value, or, you could say, the least valued, and most are to Sprint spec. In the future, say you had an S4, maybe you might wish you had a Sprint, you can`t get away from human nature. If you had a Sprint, I doubt you`d wish you had an S4 but it all depends what you want to spend. An S4 to Sprint spec. is just as good, of course, and a lot cheaper.
The best value is always to buy one that someone else has lavished the money on, and buying the best you can afford will always end up being the best value.
My pal did get a really nice Sprint from a member here and did pay near to your £40k + £10k. I turned down his offer of £50K for mine, but it is the best I`ve ever seen.
Jim
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PostPost by: rgh0 » Mon Jul 03, 2017 1:27 pm

Yes price is set by the market. Value is set by your own personal judgement.

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PostPost by: trw99 » Mon Jul 03, 2017 2:08 pm

pabbage, the answer to your question is yes, it is possible to get a good Sprint for under £40k.

However, you need to go underground to find them! The dealers will all charge a premium because they are selling to turn a profit, it is their business. Some are better at it than others. However, the private buyer is not trying to make a turn. They are selling a cherished possession. They may have put more money into the car than they can realistically expect to recoup from the sale. But there are sellers out there with good Sprints at sensible prices.

You need to be patient and build up an intelligence network! Good luck.

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PostPost by: trw99 » Mon Jul 03, 2017 2:10 pm

By the way, I meant to say, get a Sprint. It's what all the others aspire to be - the best!

Ducking now ...

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PostPost by: tvacc » Mon Jul 03, 2017 5:11 pm

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.

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PostPost by: HAIRY » Mon Jul 03, 2017 7:24 pm

I have a couple of S4SEs and do not see the point in paying a premium for an S4 Sprint. The rebuilds I have undertaken make them comparable if not better, with the added benefit that there was no pressure to have garish colourways and keys that jangle from the steering column!

On a slightly more serious note, I remain amazed that the S4 Sprint marketing ploy to boost the flagging sales of the Elan S4 when it was approaching the end of its production retains so much traction some 45 years after its implementation.

The S4 Sprint extension to the car's life cycle has to be one of Graham Arnolds most extra ordinary achievements.

So, my advice to pabbage is to buy the best Elan you can find for your budget and do not get hung up on whether it is a S4 Sprint of not. You will not be disappointed….if it is a good one.
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PostPost by: Spyder fan » Mon Jul 03, 2017 8:11 pm

trw99 wrote:By the way, I meant to say, get a Sprint. It's what all the others aspire to be - the best!

Ducking now ...

Tim


Normally it's the earliest cars of a particular marque or model that attract the highest prices, the last hoorah of the Elan seems to buck that trend even taking into account the historic racing eligibility of S1 & S2 cars that could easily sway the figures.

To answer the OP: Patience and persistence is needed to find the perfect car, they do come along, sometimes nothing for ages then 3 all at once, a bit like London buses. You need to go look, ask lots of questions, be prepared to be disappointed... a lot!

Or build your own special..............
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PostPost by: Chancer » Mon Jul 03, 2017 8:39 pm

HAIRY wrote:On a slightly more serious note, I remain amazed that the S4 Sprint marketing ploy to boost the flagging sales of the Elan S4 when it was approaching the end of its production retains so much traction some 45 years after its implementation.



My thoughts exactly, in fact the ploy is far more successfull now than it was then.
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PostPost by: andrewk » Tue Jul 04, 2017 9:17 am

To put a New Zealand perspective on this, this discussion reveals the embarrassment of riches that you experience in the UK. I'm a fool who sold his beautiful Sprint in early 2014 for the going rate here in NZ - about half of the prices we see in this thread - and who regrets it every day. In the 40 months since, to my knowledge, not a single Elan has been offered for sale in this country. I want another Elan and almost anything would do but I don't have the luxury of picking and choosing. I'd have any of the three in this thread in a heartbeat. I'd kill for URE110L but in NZ I'd be trampled in the rush... The colour's no-one's choice but who cares? It's easily changed.
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PostPost by: Spyder fan » Tue Jul 04, 2017 10:04 am

andrewk wrote:To put a New Zealand perspective on this, this discussion reveals the embarrassment of riches that you experience in the UK. I'm a fool who sold his beautiful Sprint in early 2014 for the going rate here in NZ - about half of the prices we see in this thread - and who regrets it every day. In the 40 months since, to my knowledge, not a single Elan has been offered for sale in this country. I want another Elan and almost anything would do but I don't have the luxury of picking and choosing. I'd have any of the three in this thread in a heartbeat. I'd kill for URE110L but in NZ I'd be trampled in the rush... The colour's no-one's choice but who cares? It's easily changed.


Andrew,
Importing a Special Interest Vehicle doesn't seem to be too difficult ? https://www.nzta.govt.nz/vehicles/impor ... -vehicles/
It just takes a leap of faith and some help from some of the UK members of elan.net to appraise any car for you.

The tawny coupe is probably the nicest of the 3 from where I'm sitting and Paul Matty would quote you for shipping.
Kindest regards

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