1998 Lotus Elise Reviews

1998 Lotus Elise S1 1.8 K series from UK and Ireland

Model year1998
Year of manufacture1998
First year of ownership2007
Most recent year of ownership2007
Engine and transmission 1.8 K series Manual
Performance marks 9 / 10
Reliability marks 8 / 10
Comfort marks 10 / 10
Dealer Service marks 10 / 10
Running Costs (higher is cheaper) 5 / 10
Overall marks (average of all marks)
8.4 / 10
Distance when acquired40005 miles
Most recent distance41000 miles
Previous carRover - Austin Mini

Summary:

It's a heart breaker in in both terms of the word

Faults:

The first thing to go wrong was the engine started to hydrolock, so I immediately sent it off to a specialist for repair. (Extremely nice reputable dearer).

And so the list grows.

New clutch.

New uprated head gasket and dowls.

New wet liners, pistons, rings, valves.

New all gearbox bearings and recondition.

New rear boots on suspension.

Some other thing I can't remember because I so disheartened with the list.

And this is suppose to be an immaculate example (which it is really apart from the mechanics)

General Comments:

This is the most beautiful car I have ever driven.

The ride height is perfect.

The seating position is perfect (I'm 6"2)

It handles like a dream, Fun in the wet.

A bit of common sense in the wet equals no problems.

Absolute best car ever for the price and economics.

Beautiful lines especially in lotus yellow.

A must is uprated sponge seats and you want to eat and sleep in it.

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 13th June, 2007

19th Jul 2007, 16:43

You have spent money on all of that in 1000 miles of ownership!!??

I should take it back mate!!

Dangerous cars..... should be banned.

1998 Lotus Elise 1.8i 16v from UK and Ireland

Year of manufacture1998
First year of ownership2005
Most recent year of ownership2005
Engine and transmission 1.8i 16v Manual
Performance marks 9 / 10
Reliability marks 5 / 10
Comfort marks 1 / 10
Dealer Service marks 5 / 10
Running Costs (higher is cheaper) 2 / 10
Overall marks (average of all marks)
4.4 / 10
Distance when acquired32000 miles
Most recent distance42000 miles
Previous carSAAB 93 Turbo

Summary:

Good for a second car, don't touch as your main car! PLEASE!!!

Faults:

Brakes

Headlights

Indicators

Window Winding Mechanism.

All in six months of ownership.

Lost two grand in six months on this car! (and it was a good example)

General Comments:

DO NOT BUY ONE. I bought a Lotus Elise in 2005 having read a lot of positive reviews. I have been driving 8 years and this is the worst car I have ever owned. Yes it handles superbly in the dry and has rapid acceleration, but that's it!!

HANDLING & DRIVE

Its superb handling goes out of the window when it rains and this is the only car I have ever lost control of. It is dangerous in any conditions other than a summers day. I am not over exaggerating either - other people don't see you and pull out in front of you and the car is notoriously twitchy when it is not dry. Too much power through a 700kg shell. Its acceleration is excellent, again in the dry, but like a lot of cars wheel-spin takes over in the wet.

OWNERSHIP

DO NOT even entertain the idea of having one as your only car, as I did. The boot is big enough for two tescos bags only and its position next to the engine means all your food is cooked when you get home! A journey lasting more than 40 minutes will give you severe back ache. At one point I got pins and needles in my lower back and it frequently went numb and I'm a healthy 24 year old male. There is hardly any storage space for anything inside. Servicing costs are severe and the brakes aren't even servo assisted. Almost whacked my head everytime I got in! Girlfirend hated it!... turned loads of heads though - because it looks sexy from the outside!

CONCLUSION

Lovely car if its to be your toy to burn up and down in for a few thousand miles in the summer. Don't be seduced by the cars power, like I was - the honeymoon period soon wears off especially in bad weather - but you're not going to listen are you!!

Would you buy another car from this manufacturer? No

Review Date: 3rd December, 2005

12th Dec 2005, 08:52

This is exactly what I found, it feels faster than it is because it is so small, light and close to the ground.

Luckily I had a second car!

27th Jul 2006, 15:52

I've also got an Elise S1... No big issues... I had a MX5 before and issue with the boot are poppycock... I go to France for 2 weeks 3 times a year... and I can say it's not a problem... for food shopping... I put bags front of the passenger seat... 40 min and back problems... 1200kms down to Brittany... and I was OK...

Handling on wet... try a 911 from the 80's... it's a rear wheel drive without traction control so yep, it won't react as a Golf...

Only issue: the hood isn't perfect, but some tricks and a bit of flexibility can make the Elise your main car...

Average review marks: 7.0 / 10, based on 11 reviews