top of page

1972 Lotus Elan Plus 2 S ex R.Peterson

Iconic Auctioneers Ltd

1972 Lotus Elan Plus 2 S ex R.Peterson
Iconic Auctioneers Ltd
info_icon.png

If you are interested in the content of this listing, please contact the Dealer. Contact details are indicated below in the section "Contact the Dealer." Should you require confidential support from SpeedHolics for your inquiry, kindly complete the section "I am Interested." This listing is provided by SpeedHolics solely for the purpose of offering information and resources to our readers. The information contained within this listing is the property of the entity indicated as the "Dealer." SpeedHolics has no involvement in the commercial transactions arising from this listing, and we will not derive any financial gain from any sales made through it. Furthermore, SpeedHolics is entirely independent from the "Dealer" mentioned in this listing and maintains no affiliation, association, or connection with them in any capacity. Any transactions, engagements, or communications undertaken as a result of this listing are the sole responsibility of the parties involved, and SpeedHolics shall bear no liability or responsibility in connection therewith. For more information, please refer to the "Legal & Copyright" section below.

info_icon.png

SH ID

24-0212021

info_icon.png

FEATURED BY SPEEDHOLICS

info_icon.png

In Stock

info_icon.png

United Kingdom

info_icon.png

Dealer

Engine Number P.28258

 

Transmission Manual

 

Body Colour Lagoon Blue

Description

1972 Lotus Elan Plus 2S 130/5 (Chassis #1) handed over by Colin Chapman to Grand Prix legend, Ronnie Peterson, to use as his personal car. Whilst current market values often don't show it, the Elan Plus 2 was a pivotal car for Lotus when it launched in 1967. Its Ron Hickman lines and shared name may have pinned it with the petite breakthrough Elan of five years prior, but the Plus 2 was much more than a mere variant of the first mass-market Lotus. It was the marque's first real concerted push towards the upmarket sports car sector it inhabits today. Where its junior sibling was aimed squarely at the enthusiastic hobbyist, the Plus 2 was conceived to tempt the affluent young family man out of his Jaguar and into a Lotus for the first time. Consequently, the Lotus was generously adorned with Walnut veneers, leather, gauges, switches and the airy interior required by arriving young executives and their families. In confirmation of this, the Plus 2 was the first Lotus not available in self-assembly form. However, despite its larger overall dimensions, the Plus 2 remained true to the Lotus 'simplify and add lightness' mantra and the extended and widened Elan backbone chassis ensured that the Plus 2 retained the urgency and reactiveness that had proved such a hit with the original. This was something special, a light sporty concept that was brand new to this sector of the market and so much more than an enlarged Elan. Nicknamed 'Super Swede, Ronnie Peterson rose from karting to Formula 3, became European Formula 2 Champion in 1972 and came closest to winning the Formula 1 World Championship in 1973 and 1978. Peterson's first Grand Prix was in 1970 at Monaco driving for Colin Crabbe's privateer team, Antique Automobiles Racing Team, then progressing to drive for the March Team in 1971. In 1973, Ronnie signed for John Player Team Lotus, a team led by the ever-charismatic Colin Chapman with Peterson achieving his first win in a Lotus 72 at the 1973 French Grand Prix at Paul Ricard. Three further wins that year left Peterson third in the Championship. By 1975, the Lotus 72 was showing its age resulting in Peterson signing for Shadow, however, Chapman convinced him to stay at Lotus, promising faster development of the Lotus 77 with Peterson driving the car in 1976 before re-joining March Engineering for 1977 and winning the Italian Grand Prix. After a short spell with Tyrrell, Peterson returned to Lotus for the 1978 season winning the South African and Australian Grand Prix with his team mate, Mario Andretti, who won the World Championship that year. Ronnie Peterson's enduring legacy owes much to his spectacular sideways style and he is still regarded by many as one of the fastest drivers in F1 history. It is difficult to describe the effect that this young, good looking, quiet and shy but seriously talented Formula 1 driver had upon, not only Grand Prix enthusiasts, but the public in general, creating a huge ripple of affection that, remarkably, is still felt today some 45 years later. In late November 1972, the first Elan Plus 2 to roll off the line with a five-speed gearbox was given to Team Lotus Formula One driver Ronnie Peterson by Colin Chapman. The archives show that #1001L was handed over to Ronnie on 23/11/72 in Lagoon Blue with black trim and designated S130/5, the 'S' standing for the 130bhp Sprint specification engine and a five-speed gearbox. Two letters in the extensive history from Lotus Cars confirms Ronnie Peterson used the Elan as his personal car and the factory dispatch book shows the Elan was earmarked for the immensely talented 'Super Swede'. A further letter from a Lotus archivist notes that Ronnie Peterson’s Chief mechanic, Eddie Dennis, often drove the Elan to Formula One races to be available for Ronnie to use if he happened to fly in to meetings. The DVLA print out of the owner’s timeline shows the car first registered to Lotus Cars with Ronnie Peterson’s signature and a date stamp of 22nd November 1972. Accompanying this lovely blue Elan is a photograph of it and Ronnie Peterson on the drive of his Maidenhead home.The history file also contains a very large number of invoices dating back to the seventies. Most recent maintenance has included work on the engine and the engine bay certainly looks very impressive. #1001L is an historically important Lotus, partly because of its place in the timeline of Elan production but, realistically, because it was the personal car of one of the most admired drivers in F1 history, the late Ronnie Peterson.