Wednesday, October 10, 2012

Ferrari Owners

Having owned an elise for a while I've sort of become used to it. I also didn't have any real sports car experience before I bought it, so to a certain extent I'm spoiled. I suspect I don't quite know how an elise really compares to other sports cars. It's kind of hard to get perspective by reading posts on Lotus Talk, since it's full of lotus enthusiasts and so one sort of expects folks there to say good things, or to be bitter about something.

Recently I ran across a very interesting post on Ferrari Chat that seems to be a window into how the elise is viewed by Ferrari owners. One of the regulars there was contemplating getting an elise or exige, and asked for opinions. Given that Ferraris have a sticker prices upwards of 5 times that of an elise, my expectation was that there would be a bit of snobbery and upturned noses.

To my surprise I found almost none of that kind of attitude. Many of the respondants turn out to be current or former elise owners, but it's clear that most of them can own whatever car they feel like. Here are some of my favorite quotes:

Flash G:
It will be the best handling car you ever drive (short of an Ariel Atom). The grip is insane and the communication/feel from the wheel is second to none. 
Not wanting to be disrespectful but I must respond to someones post. I own an Erial Atom 3 with 300 hp and the Lotus is hands above the Atom on handling. The Atom of course is a good to fair handler that has stunning acleration that you do not get with the Lotus. The quote for the Atom manufacturer was 0-60 at 2.85 seconds. Not sure if it is true but it is quick and makes other cars feel slow. My Mosler is a tad quicker and my ZR1 is a little slower 0-60. 
i've driven a SC K20 atom in anger a few times and tracked a whole slew of S1 exige race spec, elise S2, elise S2 with 350hp turbo, opel speedsters etc... imo, the elise handles better than the very competent atom. however not much beats the atom for crab walking when u stomp on the loud pedal. 
Finally, there is really no other car that is within 1000 lbs of curb weight and when you drive a car that weighs under 2000 lb you will always view even 911s, Ferraris and other sports cars as fat toads in comparison.
If a Maclaren F1 was 90's F1 tech on the street then a lotus elise is 80's F1 tech in anaffordable package for the street... ...My boxer has become more of an ornamental pice since the lotus arrived...
As a side note, this past weekend NER held the Stirling Moss championship, and a non-points event along side it. A ferrari owner showed up with a 458, and unlike some of the other super-car owners who have showed up in the past he turned out to be quite cool, had a good time, and it sounds like he might return. This is a refreshing change versus some of the other super car drivers who left halfway through because there were folks with 1990's civic SI out driving them (nevermind the years of experience the civic drivers had).

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