1961 Lotus Elite Series 2 Coupé Registration no. Not UK registered Chassis no. EB1461649 Engine no. FWE9586
The Elite's introduction in 1957 demonstrated that Colin Chapman's skills as a racing car designer and constructor could just as easily be applied to production road cars; it was, nevertheless, conceived with competition in mind, as Chapman's sights were set on class wins at Le Mans and the Monte Carlo Rally. A typically innovative design, the Elite featured a glassfibre monocoque body tub, independent suspension all round and four-wheel disc brakes, while the aerodynamically efficient body made the most of the Coventry Climax engine's 75bhp, delivering a top speed of 112mph.
This Elite was first purchased from Lotus Cars by a Mr Mosley of Manchester on 23rd November 1961. It then passed hands via a Mr J G Bryant in South Wales to a Mr Garves Morris in 1969. At the end of 1969 the car was stripped for repairs and repainting; however, the project was shelved due to the owner's business commitments.
In 1997 the car was discovered and purchased by Richard Wilson, the secretary of Club Elite, who in turn sold it to John Mead, the Club's then chairman. Mr Mead embarked on a restoration helped by Lotus specialist Dave Partinson for body finishing, Peter Smith Motors for a professional re-spray, Mk 14 Components Ltd for parts and John Smurthwaite at JS Engine Developments in Tamworth, who rebuilt the engine to Stage 2 specification. The finished car was shown at the Silverstone Classic event. A video may be found on YouTube where John Mead explains the car and its history.
Subsequently the Elite was sold to a French customer, who registered it in France (the former UK registration was '9364 ND'). A cancelled French Carte Grise, some restoration photographs and a Motor Sport advertisement from 1965, when the car was for sale for the princely sum of £740, come with it.
A beautiful example of the iconic Lotus Elite, restored by marque specialists.