1994 Lotus Elan M100

Highlights


  • 1 of just 800 examples
  • Full respray in Empire Green 
  • The sought-after Lotus toolkit 
  • S2 Wheels and enhancements
  • Aftermarket A Pillar seals

The Appeal


The Elan M100 was a Lotus designed to drag lotus into the modern age, using a large $55 million development budget from General Motors it features lots of Lotus ethos. The rigid steel chassis covered with lightweight fibreglass panels is all part of the performance through lightness ethos that was pioneered by Lotus founder Colin Chapman.

With the first series of the Elan M100 wrapping in 1992 it was succeeded by the special edition Series 2 model, with only 800 produced for a very short period it is a more sought-after version. The S2 model introduced some practical and  handling improvements. This car is number 200 out of the special edition of 800 and has had a respray within the past 5 years making sure that she looks as good as she goes.

The History and Paperwork


  • This Elan S2 left the Lotus factory towards the end of 1994 
  • We can see that it has had only a few owners, and has obviously been looked after by enthusiasts
  • The previous owner acquired this car and after a while put it in for a respray to their chosen colour Empire Green
  • Empire Green is a rare original Lotus colour and suits the Elan well
  • The car was previously green so the V5 remains unchanged stating the colour as green
  • The current owner is possibly one of the best people for this car to end up, with a collection of modern classic and classic Lotus they know the Elan S2 inside and out
  • There is no history folder as it appears to have been lost, what we do have though is the V5 and also the all-important Lotus toolkit. 
  • Luckily the current owner is mechanically minded so they have completed a few jobs to get the car running nicely
  • It has just been serviced, with the oil and filter, brake fluid, PAS fluid, coolant and thermostat, platinum plugs, air filter, cambelt, PAS belt, and alternator belt all being changed. 
  • The front suspension has been stripped, painted, and then rebuilt with new wheel bearings.
  • The car sits on the distinctive S2 alloy wheels, which are becoming increasingly valuable and these ones are in good condition
  • A stainless-steel exhaust has also been fitted 
  • It also has a long MOT on it, so you don’t need to worry about doing that anytime soon.
  • It is now your chance to add to the history of this car, it will be the perfect companion for any summer picnic or road trip.

The Interior


  • The seats are presented well
  • Factory fitted A/C
  • Aftermarket A-pillar seals 

The Lotus Elan M100 was launched as a fun little two-seater convertible, with its name and design philosophy harking back to the very first Elan of the 1960’s you can imagine that the interior is a great place to sit and take in the true analogue feels that only a modern classic can provide.
Presented in good condition the interior of the S2 is a lovely place to be true. 

Looking at the two part-leather seats we can see that they have been looked after well, with no major rips or tears to either the fabric or the leather, there is some slight wear to the driver’s side seat base but with a car of this age, this is par for the course really. 

When you look at the dash you are presented with a smorgasbord of large, 90s style, plastic knobs, and buttons. All of these appear to work as they should, and the factory fitted A/C also works. It blows cold air, although the current owner did mention that it might benefit from a  service.

There are only a few areas of the interior that could do with a little bit of TLC. Mainly the gearstick has some wear to the top of the knob. The radio tape player also needs some attention as it doesn’t currently work, you will also find a 10 CD multichanger in the boot. This could be an opportunity for a repair project or an to update to digital with Bluetooth.

The main party piece of the interior is of course the folding fabric roof. Looking at the inside condition of this material we can see that it is in good condition with no rips or tears. This roof section simply unclicks with the two clips at the front and is then stowed neatly in its own compartment under the rear deck. With the roof up, the cabin feels very sporty but with it retracted it feels lovely and airy. 

One piece of information for you as a prospective buyer is that the A-Pillar seals have been replaced in favour of aftermarket offerings that are designed to provide a better seal. 

You will enjoy every second spent within the interior of this Lotus Elan, it will quickly become your favourite place to sit and enjoy a beautiful summer evening drive. 

The Exterior 


  • Professionally resprayed
  • Rare and sought after S2 alloys
  • Canvas roof in good condition

Designed by Peter Stevens (whose most notable cars include the McLaren F1 and Jaguar XJR-15), the Lotus Elan M100 was designed as a small, affordable, and clean sheet design. Presented to market in just under three years it was a lovely looking sports car. 

This example is presented for sale in very good exterior condition. Originally the car was finished in a lighter green, but the previous owner decided to give the car a full re-spray so that they could truly appreciate the perfect lines on the exterior of this Elan. Today this paint still looks very good to the eye, and as you can see from the photos, it provides a near mirror like reflection in the sunlight. 

A few important features on the exterior that should be pointed out, are the Elan S2 alloy wheels which are highly sought after with a large price tag to match. The alloys fitted to this example have been refurbished and as such look incredible when contrasted against the dark green paintwork. Another interesting, and possibly overlooked, element on the exterior of the Elan S2 are the rear lights. Sourced from a rare Renault Alpine they are incredibly difficult to find, this then makes them rather expensive to replace, so they must be in perfect working order. Luckily for you, the rear lights on this Elan are presented in great condition.

It is not only the rear lights that are special, but the headlights are also intriguing. Normal headlights would have spoilt the streamlined, wedge shaped, front end so Lotus fitted it with one of the coolest features to ever adorn the front of any car. Pop-up headlights, a proper throwback to big hair and shoulder pads the pop-up headlight has found a cult like following amongst car enthusiasts. You will be happy to hear that the mechanism that pops these headlights works very well, with no cheeky winks.

A quick note on the exterior condition of the folding roof, much like the interior, it is presented well with no rips or tears to the fabric.

Overall, the exterior is present in very good condition. Wherever you park this car you cannot help but look back it at after you parked, and this is a very good sign that you have bought the right car. Whether you wish to display this car at car shows or use it on a more regular basis, both you and the car will look great doing it. 

The Mechanics 


  • Recently serviced 
  • Fitted with the ‘bullet-proof’ Isuzu engine
  • S2 Galvanised rear wishbones
  • Great fun to get out and drive

Upon the Elan M100’s introduction to the market in 1989 it was heralded by Autocar magazine as ‘the quickest point-to-point car available’. Using a bulletproof Isuzu inline-4 1.6l engine it was also known for its reliability. The M100 would go through a rigorous testing phase which included nearly a million miles in the Arizonan desert and the Arctic tundra and if that wasn’t enough every car would then be taken on a 30 mile trip around Hethel. 

The Elan M100 is still the only front-wheel drive that Lotus has ever built, but according to their literature the powertrain layout was perfect ‘for the given weight, power, and tyre size’.

This Elan is presented in very good mechanical condition, with a recent and extensive service it is ready for you to grab it by the reigns and take it for a spirited drive. When you get in and experience the driving characteristics of this little sports car you will not regret this purchase. 

Summary


When you consider all of the pros of this Elan, such as the condition, rarity, and pure driving fun, you can see that it is an amazing deal. As the summer is right around the corner this will be the perfect summer toy for you. 

Whether you drive it with the roof up, or down you will always have a smile on your face. This is a perfect addition to your collection. 

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Vehicle specification
  • Year 1994
  • Make Lotus
  • Model Elan M100
  • Colour Green
  • Odometer 105,746 Miles
  • Engine size 1588
  • Town Cranbrook
Auction Details
  • Seller Type Private
  • Location Kent
  • Country United Kingdom
Bidding history
15 bids from 9 bidders
  • king.el•••• £6,750 07/07/22
  • neil-ro•••• £6,500 07/07/22
  • king.el•••• £5,500 07/07/22
  • jones.g•••• £5,200 04/07/22
  • Johnno £4,900 03/07/22
  • GRECHST•••• £4,800 03/07/22
  • Johnno £4,700 01/07/22
  • Yolo £4,600 30/06/22
  • Johnno £4,500 30/06/22
  • ruffef £2,500 30/06/22

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