1986 Lotus Excel


  • Subject to restoration and recommissioning work by the vendor, a renowned classic car specialist
  • Just 2,075 Excel SEs were produced between 1982-1992
  • One of only 3 known remaining in this colour and trim level

The Appeal

While Lotus has always been a low-volume manufacturer tucked away in a quiet corner of rural Norfolk, its reputation for advanced chassis design has spread all over the world. This has led to collaborations over the years between Lotus and a raft of leading carmakers ranging from Ford to DeLorean. Even auto giant Toyota called upon Hethel’s engineers during the early 1980s to help them develop the Supra which would go on to be one of the most successful sports cars of all time. What many forget, is that a second car was born out of this Anglo-Japanese cooperation - the Lotus Excel.
Incorporating numerous Toyota components including the gearbox, the Excel was based upon the outgoing Lotus Eclat, using a glass fibre body mounted upon a galvanised steel backbone chassis. The twin-cam engine came from the lauded Esprit S3 and the car achieved a 50:50 weight distribution that did wonders for its handling.
This 1986 example has been subject to a comprehensive by the vendor, a renowned classic car specialist. The engine, braking system, cooling system, steering and clutch have been rebuilt and elsewhere, the car has been sympathetically recommissioned to a very usable standard. Offered in excellent driving order and highly original overall condition, this is a fantastic example and an undiscovered gem of the Lotus back catalogue.

The History and Paperwork

  • Advisory-free MOT attained post-restoration (expired on 25th January 2024)
  • 8 former registered keepers
  • One of only 2,075 made and 3 remaining in this colour and trim level
  • Comprehensively restored by the vendor’s professional workshop
  • 99,806 miles indicated
  • V5C present

The Condition

  • The fibreglass bodywork has been carefully preserved, remaining straight and free from notable imperfections
  • We understand the chassis to be in good order, with nothing noted on the previous MOT test
  • The vendor acknowledges minor chips and scratches to the paint, consistent with age
  • The original interior was sympathetically reconditioned, reviving the factory trim to a good standard
  • The wheels have been powder-coated and present impeccably
  • All cabin electrics are reportedly in full working order, including the pop-up headlights

The Mechanics 

  • 2,174 cc four-cylinder twin-cam
  • Five-speed Toyota manual gearbox
  • Equipped with power steering
  • All electrics in full working order, including pop-up headlights
  • Engine has been stripped, assessed, re-gasketed and rebuilt with new belts and clutch
  • Braking system was stripped and rebuilt with new discs, pads, and calipers
  • The power steering pump and steering rack reconditioned
  • New brake master cylinder fitted
  • Water pump and heater matrix reconditioned
  • Tyres replaced
  • The vendor comments that it drives beautifully following the aforementioned work 


This sale is subject to the Car & Classic Terms and Conditions. By bidding and/or making an offer, you also agree to the following: 
If the seller is registered as a private seller, consumer rights stemming from EU consumer protection law do not apply. Car & Classic’s return policy applies. 
A non-refundable deposit will be payable if you are the winning bidder at auction or if your offer is accepted, refer to FAQs and T&Cs for details. 
This vehicle is “Sold As Seen”, on an “As Is, Where Is’ basis and without warranty. A full inspection of the vehicle prior to purchase and bidding is highly recommended. Photos and descriptions are for guidance purposes only. 
✓ VAT is included in the buyer's deposit. VAT may or may not be included in the final bid or offer price, as specified in the listing. 
UK-registered cars and motorbikes on Car & Classic are run through an online HPI check, to verify that they show no insurance database markers for damage or theft, and have no finance owing. 
✓ Buyers are responsible for vehicle collection or delivery. 

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Vehicle specification
  • Year 1986
  • Make Lotus
  • Model Excel
  • Colour Silver
  • Odometer 99,806 Miles
  • Engine size 2174
Auction Details
  • Seller Type Trade
  • Town Lincoln
  • Location Lincolnshire
  • Country United Kingdom
Bidding history
17 bids
  • pe•••• £8,200 05/03/24
  • as•••• £8,100 05/03/24
  • as•••• £8,000 05/03/24
  • Iz•••• £6,100 04/03/24
  • ja•••• £5,000 04/03/24
  • Sk•••• £4,500 04/03/24
  • ru•••• £4,250 04/03/24
  • Ji•••• £4,000 03/03/24
  • Sk•••• £3,000 03/03/24
  • Ji•••• £2,890 03/03/24
Message C&C Auction Team

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