Copyright © Ian Russell 2005

Personally I think that the two wings and the body kit  looks the dogs!

Lotus Esprit X180


My Stevens Esprit has undergone one or two changes since it left the Hethel Lotus factory in 1988.

For a start, the car began life as a white naturally aspirated Esprit.  As you can see, she’s now yellow.  She also has an early S4 mid-mounted wing, a blended S300 rear spoiler, bodykit, OZ sprit rim racing alloys and under the engine cover a Garrett T3 turbo charger has been added to the 2.2 lotus lump.

When I got her, the interior was burgundy and yellow.  That’s right, burgundy as in red.  Now that was pretty bad on the eyes and anyway was pretty tatty.  It now has new black carpets, a black and yellow leather interior and new Cobra Daytona seats.


The original plan was to sort the interior and then to gradually take the whole car apart and refurb everything (even though it looks like the whole thing was rebuilt about 7000 miles ago).  A recent addition to the family (no, not a baby but another Esprit) means that I may not get around to that…  In fact, the car hasn’t done many miles in the past three years.  Now that’s not a good thing since a car like this deserves to be driven and anyway regular runs keep everything working. 

I’ve seen Esprits advertised as “a supercar for supermini money” and that is absolutely right.  I just can’t think of a car this rare and of this pedigree that you can pick up as cheaply.  Running costs are also cheaper than you may think and certainly a lot cheaper than equivalent cars.  Most of the parts are fairly available and, while not the easiest car to work on, it is certainly not the most difficult if you don’t mind getting your hands dirty.

Listen, James Bond drove one for crying out loud (and before he had that rather dubious dalliance with BMW) so what more testimony do you want?

Always forgive your enemies; nothing annoys them so much.

(Oscar Wilde)