We got up close to a very rare Lotus Motorsport Elise
Recently we visited our local Lotus dealer to photograph a very rare Lotus, the Motorsport Elise. These cars were manufactured exclusively for the Lotus Autobytel championship in 2000.
The Autobytel Championship was run alongside the British Touring Car series. The specially-built Motorsport Elise featured a tuned Rover K-Series engine, aerodynamic bodywork and central driving position. The cars were prepared by Lotus Sport at a cost to the driver of around £60,000 a season. K-series engines were tuned by Minister and developed around 200bhp via a Quaife 5-speed straight-cut ‘box.
The history of this particular car is unknown. It is possible that it never actually raced in the Autobytel series and may have been prepared to race in other series around the world. What we do know is that it was previously owned and raced in Italy. You can even see handwritten ‘Olio’ in one of the engine bay pictures below.
Regardless of history, this is a very rare car and it was superb to get so close to it. It had such an air of performance and focus about it. The car is still for sale here.
Thanks to Stratton Motor Company for letting me photograph the car.