"In the early-1970s, the recently appointed Tony Rudd came up with two major ideas, codenamed Project M50 and Project M70, the former became the 1974 Lotus Elite, the latter became the Esprit. The S1 Esprit was released in 1976 following halts in production and design with Colin Chapman being underwhelmed by the model version’s wind tunnel performance, with the S2 launching in 1978. As part of the advertising and marketing program, the S2 was launched featuring an infamous shot of its creator Colin Chapman perched on a Championship Gold S2 Esprit in front of his JPS logo'd Cessna Chancellor executive twin. It's the kind of image that only the 70s could pull off with any degree of normality.
External differences from the S1 included new intake and cooling ducts behind the rear quarter windows, 14in Speedline alloy wheels, taillights from the Rover SD1 and an integrated front spoiler. Not known for their practicality, more helpful changes were made including relocating the battery to the rear of the car, adding an access door to the engine cover, installing wider seats and replacing the Veglia instrument cluster with individual Smiths.
Following long-term (c.20 year) storage, this S2 presents in remarkably original condition in its launch colour of Championship Gold. The Marcasite faux-Suede interior presents exceptionally well, which is no easy feat as it is notoriously hard to maintain or replace. The carbs have been subject to a full rebuild and set-up by Lotus Specialists with photographic evidence, with any old/worn parts being replaced when warranted. This lovely and well cared for example is reportedly number 10 of just 27 cars built in ‘launch specification’ and has covered a warranted 62,216 (atoc) miles from new, backed up by a host of old MOTs.
This S2 runs and drives very well with very minor (yet essential) modern day upgrades such as electronic ignition, improved earthing cables and a battery isolator. Esprit's are striking looking cars anyway and the rare colour of Championship Gold lifts it even further, reflected in success at a recent Shelsley Walsh Concours and numerous magazine articles featuring HLD. It's supplied with a bespoke indoor car cover, lots of invoices and related history, an owners manual and a Lotus Certificate of Provenance."
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