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02-04-2004, 05:42 PM
Choices, what would you do?
<BTW: I posted this on the Porsche forum too, just to be fair>

I am having to decide between a 2000 Lotus Esprit and a 2000 Porsche 996 C4. Both have their own positives and negatives. The Lotus is rare (~241 made in 2000 compared to ~24000 for Porsche), fast, pure and exotic. The Porsche is dependable, smooth as silk, servicable and still in production. Granted, still in production means you will always aspire to the new model, but such is life.

The Esprit has full maintenance records, one owner and 15K miles. The C4 also well maintained, one owner and 28K miles. What would you do and why? The Porsche or the Lotus....

PS: Car is a second car, not a daily driver. Live in Texas, so weather is not a big issue. Choosing between weekend cars.

02-04-2004, 07:06 PM
...the Esprit should be better than the C4. Looks are subjective of course, but I prefer the exotic look of the Esprit to the Porsche which you see all the time.

The Esprit is not as cushy of a ride as the C4. It is reliable if driven regularly and maintained properly. Maintenance on it should not be particularly more than the Porsche.

I had a 2000 Esprit (in Texas, in fact)...and sold it. I regretted it every moment after I sold it, and couldn't rest until I bought another one, so now I have an '02.

Have you had a chance to drive both? The Esprit probably isn't as 'friendly' of a car to drive (less ground clearance, heavier clutch, stiffer suspension), but that is also part of its appeal. It is more of a raw sports car than the Porsche in my opinion (albeit with a nicely-wrapped leather interior).

I vote for the Esprit. What color are you looking at?

02-05-2004, 01:16 AM
Basically whatever color I can get a good deal on. The Esprit, I only have to pick a color, the C2 or C4, there are several combinations of options that are attractive. I originally had a deposit on an Elise, but after driving an Euro model 111r (I think?) I don't believe the Elise would survive the local roads and it is sooo tiny it becomes cute.

Black would be a good color for a weekend car or red for the Esprit (just looks great in red). The met. green for the C2 if possible. Very set on a least a 1999 on the Esprit due to the interior. The billet gauge panel is much more attractive to me than the prior years and the color match interior panels on the newer models are choice.

I also have a young daughter who would enjoy a ride in the car. That's what got me started on the C2. Also, the extra storage is nice if you decide to take a road trip. This is just my line of thinking so far.

02-05-2004, 11:27 AM
...he looked at on Monday. It is a 2000 in Houston but is brand new and has never been titled. I'll let him tell you about it since he should have first shot at it since he looked at it first. But, if he passes on it, it might be perfect for you.

Esprit and porsche owner
02-09-2004, 02:59 PM
I own both cars, and have to admit the Porsche is the winner here. On the days the Esprit is running fine, it's an awesome car to drive! The rest of the days are spent in the garage as these things are like race cars, 500km and you're doing a tune-up. The Porsche is bullet proof!You can have it as an everyday driver and as long as you change the oil, that's about the only time it will see the dealer. I love both my cars, but if I had to pickup one, the porsche wins because of dependability. I know I can go cruise for a day and not have to worry about coming home on a flatbed!!

02-09-2004, 03:09 PM
I have over 6,000 miles on mine. It has been to the shop twice for oil changes so far, and that's it.--Alan

02-10-2004, 01:39 AM
Yes, what year Esprit do you have?
My '02 has about 3K miles on it.
One oil change, that's it. No troubles.

You haven't had a rear main seal problem on your 996, then?
I understand that one is going around.

02-10-2004, 03:58 PM
DoubleD decided not to go look at it, so I'll go ahead and post the info about it here.

It is a new, never-titled 2000 Esprit V8 (red with tan interior). Apparently it will come with the full factory warranty of 2 years, unlimited miles. It is at Star Motors in Houston, and the head of the Lotus team there is Wally. You can reach him at 713-868-6831. I have heard that the car will be sold for a heck of a deal.

I have no affiliation with Wally or Star other than as a satisfied customer. Tell 'em Alan from Roadfly sent ya!


02-11-2004, 11:09 AM
Have to look into it.

I'm looking to buy this early this summer. I still have my deposit on an Elise and plan to take a look at the car before I pull it (April 2004). However, I think the Elise is just too cute for me. My wife doesn't like the Porsche, says you see them all the time and since I am not looking for a daily driver, the Esprit just seems to be the best choice. A "new" 2000 from a dealer might still be too expensive. Looking in the 45000 to 55000 range. Red on tan, however, is exactly what I am looking for, so I might have to take a look. Any one looking for a 2002 Z71 Tahoe? I'm ready for a car again.

02-11-2004, 11:28 AM
My guess is that you can get that car for right near the upper end of your range--give or take a little bit. Having that factory warranty right from the very beginning would be worth a fair amount, in my opinion, as well as knowing that you were the one who broke the car in properly. You never know what a previous owner might have done to it.


02-20-2004, 10:24 AM
Finally got the chance to drive both cars. Both are awesome to say the least. The C4 is finished out better inside, but is almost too cushie, you kind of lose the feel for the road. The Lotus is low, sleek, and ultra reactive, but the shifter sucks. If I had only one car and I had to drive daily to work, I would get the C4 due to its road manners. But, who needs road manners in a exotic sports car? I want it to drive and it is not my daily car. So, I'm going with the Lotus. I want to do my Elise test drive first in April, but I believe the Esprit is the car for me.

Oh yeah,

After a visit to the dealship, I discover the first law of parking an Esprit. "Thou shalt not parallel park". Apparently, a guy was having to have his 1997 Esprit repaired when a lady driving an Expedition back over his hood. I'm sure her insurance company loves her. Wonder how much that bill will be?

02-20-2004, 10:29 AM
The shifter in the Esprit seems like it sucks at first, but once you get used to it, it is actually a shorter throw than the one in the Porsche. I drove my friend's 911 TT a while ago and was surprised at how long the shifter throw was. The Esprit doesn't like having the shifter slammed between gears, but it isn't too long of a throw. And, nothing beats the sound of the Esprit V8. What dealership did you drive the Esprit at?


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