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  • Birthday 06/19/1980

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  • Gender
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    LEICESTERSHIRE (was Lincolnshire)
  • Interests
    Cars, modifying cars, socialising, ladies!

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  • Currently Driving
    200bhp, moderatelly modified Lotus Elise R (with plenty of track miles on it now :-) ) Previous car was a 167bhp throttle bodied Lupo Gti.

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    GTi replacement

    I pretty much dislike all French cars but the Megane R26 F1 is one of the only ones I considered buying a few years ago when they came out. Good choice and I have no doubt you will enjoy the ownership experience.

    How many miles have you driven

    Only including cars I have owned... 1000cc Mini - 5,000 miles AX GT - 10,000 miles Mini (full race spec) - 50,000 miles BMW 318ti - 20,000 miles Lupo Gti - 80,000 miles Mondeo - 8,000 miles Mercedes 190 - 46,000 miles Mercedes E250 - 15,000 miles Lotus Elise R - 34,000 miles Been driving 13 years now so I have averaged a little over 20,000 miles every year I have been driivng so far.

    Hello old members?!

    Not as often as I used to (used to post every day) but I still browse and look out for anything interesting.

    Red Arosa (possibly Carter's old tdi)

    Sometime over the weekend just gone (possibly Friday afternoon or Saturday afternoon). I was behind you going over the M1 bridge in to Loughborough and then following some traffic you followed me in to Loughborough. I was in the titanium coloured Lotus.

    T350 or S1 Exige?

    Pretty much the worst weather of the year to be driving an Exige on A048's...and it is too cold to even spend time cleaning it and doing a few small jobs. Next breakfast club is the 12th December, I will be up in Yorkshire that weekend so wont make breakfast. Pretty sure if you go in the Exige you will be surrounded all morning and have plenty of company to chat to though, I think the S1 Exige draws a crowd like a few other ledgendary Lotus, the Cortina, the 340R, the late Esprit's and the Carlton.

    T350 or S1 Exige?

    Awesome car Matty, looks in superb condition too from the photos. I prefer the wheels in silver myself, though I don't like black wheels on any car. I bet it will be such an occasion to drive, you are in for some good times. Edit to add: I also prefer the quartz silver to the new aluminium colour. My first choice would be titanium but when the cars sell as quickly as they do you have to 'grab' the first good one you come accross. The larger black diffuser on the new aluminium car looks nice, the diffusers look more purposeful in black I think.

    T350 or S1 Exige?

    Matty - with the Honda converted Lotus, I was meaning to get an Elise with the Honda engine in, realised the Exige were a little on the high side of the budget range. Not my thing but what about Lotus Europa? Potential to be very quick (see Hofmanns of Henley who have got a well sorted Europa race car) but might be quite boring compared to Exige and T350. Turbo might be something different for you as a change from n/a, though if you are like me you will find turbo engines boring and lacking in throttle response. If you like interiors then the Elise S2 Elise/Exige is pretty nice in a minimalist way. T350 is obviously beautiful but more focussed as a sporty GT rather than racer, depends on your preference.

    T350 or S1 Exige?

    Matty, et-all, Example of how fast a series 1 Elise/Exige can be with Honda K20 power. http://www.vimeo.com/11578403 Decision made now Matty?

    T350 or S1 Exige?

    I can see where the 993 suggestions are going, very nice cars and in my opinion more of a 'pure Porsche' that the newer stuff. I also like the the suggestion of a lesser model with 2wd, again more pure than the 4wd stuff. Having been in a 996 turbo I can say that despite being silly fast (it was near 600bhp) aside from the speed it was incredibly boring, no sense of occasion inside and very muted from what was happening outside. Matty - still got Elise, did it's third trip to the Nurburgring this summer and also took in the Stelvio pass, well some of it as it was closed up near the top due to snow. Just shy of 30,000 miles now. Considered a change to something more family orientated such as a CSL of E92 M3 this year but decided to keep Elise and maybe supercharge it for 260bhp. I never drove a Tamora, viewed a few and after a long discussion (4 hours) with a Lotus, TVR and Noble dealer I decided to go with the Elise (close call but the reliability aspect swayed me after having had the totally reliable Lupo for 5 years I did not want to go down the unreliable route again - been there with a full spec race Mini years before). I suggested the K20 Elise option as it would look like the Exige but be faster and likely cheaper to own maintenance wise. I realise it will not be a real Exige but not sure if you would be concerned about that or not? I guess the price would be similar to that of a good Exige but if you were planning to do lots of miles you would likely not wipe value off as quickly as you would if you put high miles on a 'real' S1 Exige. I know I already said we dont buy cars as an investment but it is not worth ignoring costs completelly. May I also throw in a comment on Caterhams and Westfields. Went to look at an R500 a year ago as the Midlands Caterham is not far from me. Not impressed at all, cannot see why they are so expensive, the Lotus is so much more complete for the cash. Also check out the reviews of Atom 'vs' 'R500' 'vs' 211, the Lotus is down on power but still the fastest around a track, backs up my theory of Caterhams just being in the German saloon car style bhp shouting game but in reality a well sorted Lotus is still a more complete car despite its more humble output. Certainly drive both before deciding, even if ti just so you can say to yourself that you have driven a TVR and Exige S1 irrespective of shat you buy in the end. Keep posting too as I love discussions like this.

    T350 or S1 Exige?

    Exige would get my vote Matty. Not a biased opinion either (for those who don't know me I have had a 200bhp Lotus Elise for 3 years and am a Lotus lover of most models) but before buying the Elise I was looking for a Tamora which is basically a T350 underneith anyway. S1 Exige are not losing any money, in fact the good ones are appreciating so if it doesn't cost too much in repairs during ownership it may become a sound investment. Just like me though, you don't buy your cars for an investment, you buy them to drive and for that reason I think the Lotus has to be the one. Not only would it reward you far more than the TVR, I know that I would feel more comfortable driving it hard than I would the TVR, feeling scared of breaking the sensational but fragile speed six every time I gave it a workout would sour the experience somewhat for me. Exige might be hard to source, very few for sale and plenty leaving the country due to current exchange rate. Saying that, T350 are not exactly 10 a penny! Not much more to tell you as having had the S160 you know all you need to know about the S1 chassis and sure you have already done your research. As an aside (and this may not float your boat), what about getting a K20 powered S1 Elise and swapping to Exige clam shells? That way you get performance, reliability* and the Exige look with refreshed paint. *Not that the K series is bad engine, in VHPD form yes it is more delicate than in lesser performance builds, but head gasket issues aside - which can be fixed once and for all anyway, they are great engines with superb power outputs for their weight and size.

    Saxo VTR vs Lupo/Arosa Sport?

    Standard 'vs' standard the Saxo would handle better, you only have to read a few reviews to see how well regarded the Saxo VTR, VTS and sister car the 106 Gti handled. I don't buy in to the the comments saying the Lupo would be faster if you modified it, what a daft statement, how can you compare two cars with similar performance then say along the lines of "but if you modify the Lupo it will be faster"...not exactly a straight comparison there. Agree on the comments made that the Lupo would be safer, better built and certainly more reliable. I personally would take a Saxo VTS over any Lupo except the Lupo Gti. Saxo VTR would be a closer call, certainly rather have a Lupo Gti but not sure if I would take a sport unless it was a colour concept.

    Crusoe what car upgrade thread

    Excellent choice Crusoe, I had no interest in the Z4 but the M3 is a fine choice. I have no doubt you will enjoy the car and love the noise and speed. Have you gone for a soft top or coupe this time? If it si black then I hope it has polished 19's or CSL's on as they work so well with nice clean black paint.

    VW or Audi

    Looks wise I think I would choose the Golf on a 3 door 'vs' 3 door or a 5 door 'vs' 5 door basis. Fasvourite of the four options is the Golf 3 door. I would need to become mental before I paid £40,000 for a Golf though...in fact I would need to become mental before I paid £30,000 for a Golf either!

    2011 Polo GTI

    I like that, nice bit of chunkiness to it, the side swage line has a hint of recent BMW to me. Lowered, some wider and larger diameter wheels and some decent seats and I would be pretty interested.


    I would second Al's advice regarding brakes. I have been there a couple of times in the last year and it did appear pretty heavy on brakes, I didn't really notice any wear but I could smell them getting hot so they were working hard. If nothing else I would want to be going with fresh pads and fluid (even if they are OEM).

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