There I was, enjoying the full dealership experience at a Porsche Centre, when I spotted a Lotus Elan+2 parked in the customer bay. It was well used, with mud all over its less than perfectly painted sills. A working, everyday Lotus and, like most of them, pretty and sensational value. Because Geely money might turn Lotus into a proper car company again, maybe values will shoot up, so perhaps we should buy now.
Elise models in all their multiple versions have been the core for Lotus enthusiasts over the past few decades and the appeal is fairly obvious. Prices have certainly firmed up in the past few years and the starting money is now around £13,000 for an example from 2000 onwards. I saw a 2000 Millennium edition, of which there were apparently only 50 made, with 80,000 miles and unique Atlantic Blue Pearl paint. It featured the 111S front end and headlight covers as standard, plus larger, OZ wheels and fancy blue Alcantara cabin trim. It had had three owners, a full history and all for £13,500.
When it comes to the Exige, you need to find another £10,000 to join the club: £23,995 buys you a basic 1.8. One of the cheaper ones I saw, a 2006 car, had a genuine 53,000 miles and one owner. Even so, a 2015 350 Sport isn’t that pricey, especially with added Race and Premium packs. The specification went on for pages and you wonder how they pack all that into something so small. Yours for £37,995 with 14,000 miles showing.