Kylie Adams' 1999
Kylie Adams from Auckland, New Zealand owns a 1999 Sport 350 in Aluminium, with a Black/Blue Alcantara interior.
Sport 350 Year: 1999 Colour: Aluminium Interior: Blue Alcantera, Carbon fibre, black leather Driving Style: Should be on the track! Miles per year: 1,000 – 2,000 Owned Since: January 2007 Purchase from: Private Serviced at: KW Historics NZ, make billet/one off parts ourselves Other Cars: 97 Audi Avant SE Previous Lotus': 1989 Esprit Turbo Carbed - Black Why an Esprit: Always wanted one since I can remember. My father had a lot to do with servicing racing Lotus Conrtinas and I guess I always fancied the Esprit. Upgrades: The car has the PUK Red racing chip #3, Alloy actuators, boost set at 0.9 bar. Cats removed and Blue flame sports exhaust installed. Problems: Due to ever changing emissions laws, our goverment drafted a document saying that imported cars older than 2002 were basically not allowed to enter the country - crazy it seems. I had plans of purchasing the most extreme Esprit ever made in a few years but only when we had some spare funds. Since we heard about this law change through friends who were in a similar situation, we decided to bite the bullet and make this happen. I took drastic action and decided to sell my much loved 89 that was nearly restored to mint again to help fund the purchase of this car No.23. As expected my 89 only took 2 weeks to sell, I really miss that car. I looked on all the Esprit sites and oddly enough found three Sport 350s for sale at the time, this never happens, so I was able to choose one that had a clean history,full service records and used on a regular basis which was what I wanted. This car was picked up from Chester by a friend who owns a small transport Co whos also a Lotus nut, so I knew the car was in good hands. The car was then delived to London to the freightforwarder who then loaded the car into a brand new container, so atleast it travelled in a bit of style!!. Then its journey begun to Auckland, New Zealand. It took a long seven weeks to get here but finally arrived and no damage - yay!
We were eager to see the container being unloaded and wanted to be there when the doors were cracked open, but due to Health & Safety restrictions not to mention getting in the way of exiting bugs or other foreign matter in the container we wernt allowed near it. So the guys were more than happy to snap a few pics for me while cracking the container open - awesome!! Was stressful buying this car unseen, but as our worldwide Esprit community is so strong, UK Esprit owners made it happen for me, you know who you are and I cant thank you all enough :-)
When the car was unloaded it was covered in cow poo underneath. Because of foot and mouth, mad cow disease being found in the UK, our authorities failed its release. So I had to wait another few days to get it cleaned. The PO had no time to clean it before departure to NZ :-(
The next hurdle was getting it compliant. The rotors and brake lines were too rusty/worn to pass so I basically had to get the whole underneath stripped of rust and replaced with new parts to get it passed and WOF for on road. Its a job we were going to getting fixed anyway but just a pain as all I want to do is enjoy this beast of a car.
Info: New disks, brake lines and pads replaced in Jan 08.
All four corners of the suspension to be stripped and refurbished this year.
New decals to be fitted and detailing to be done.
Above left : This is of the car picked up by a friend recommended to me who owns and operates this Transporter. Car was located in Chester and taken back to the Companies Depot in Liverpool for the weekend. Mark used loading blocks to make sure there was enough ground clearance at the front. He also disconnected battery and wiped off some of the cow poo found on the sills for me. Oh not to mention taking these pics for me too. Thank you Mark!! .
The second image: The car is delivered the following Monday to the freight forwarders in London ready to be unloaded.
Last image is car carefully unloaded at freight forwarders yard in London ready to be loaded into a new container and secured for its journey ahead.
Car left Tilbury on the 20th October 07 and ETA 4th Dec 07.
New Zealand MAF (officials) crack open the container 6th Dec 07. Not much room for anything else in there. Car arrived in good condition. Just a bit dirty!!
7 Dec 07. We finally managed to convince our freight agent for a peek of the car while still in the red tape zone, this is normally an area where you are forbidden to enter. Its amazing what you can do with loads of nice persuasion. Given a half hour slot and clad in bright yellow coats we were in there like rats up a drain pipe. It was awesome seeing it for the first time. Never seen a Sport 350 in the flesh till now was pure joy and really a feeling I will always remember.
Despite it looking dusty and dirty after its travels it really did spell awesome. I was told that there are no Sport 350's here in NZ and none in the southern hemisphere. This is the first which makes it even more special. So after trying to look at every part of the car quickly I gave up and just slipped into the drivers seat wearing a permanent grin on my face that I haven't been able to remove yet. Being 1.7m tall I fit like a glove in Esprits this car is perfect for me.
As expected MAF had failed its inspection as being too dirty and asked why it wasn't cleaned before loading, but that's another story. The car got cleaned the following day and trucked over to our Lotus Service Agent for compliancing.
Here are some pics from a recent photoshoot done here in Auckland. The last pic is at Tongariro National Park, North Island New Zealand.
Here are refurbish pics of front and rear suspension, lower and upper links plus drive shafts.
Kylie previously owned a Black 1989 Esprit Turbo
Carburetted only 103 made.
I bought this car for 33,500NZD owned it for six wonderful years and sold it for 39,000NZD last year 2007. When this model was available for sale I was still a teenager and remember seeing it in the shop. I had always lustered after an Esprit ever since. Years later I had enough money to pay cash for a nice car and looked in our local Auto trader. It was a similar car to what I remember so I knew it was for me and bought it. Having Lotus in the blood from my fathers car racing days he gave it the thumbs up based on its fine racing pedigree but warned me of the issues I might face. I never never looked back what a cracking car.
Due to New Zealand drafting new emissions laws that could come into effect soon, it would make it hard to import a Sport 350 in the future which is what I wanted to do next. So unfortunately I had to make room in the garage for the 350 and this beautiful car had to go. Very sad day!!!
This car was a restoration project and was worse for wear when I purchased it. The only good thing about it was the engine, clutch and box were good as ever which was a bonus so least it was a runner. My intentions was to remove the SE spoiler, wing and wheels for original parts, but they kind of grew on me and the X180R aftermarket wheels are awesome, so decided to keep the look and just really tidy the whole car up.
SE front spoiler – fitted by previous owner
Sport 300 rear wing – fitted by previous owner
Power Steering fitted – Isuzu – fitted by previous owner
X180R Revolution three piece racing wheels – fitted by previous owner. Additionally we refurbished and mirror polished the rims - took friggen ages to do, but rewarding.
Billet polished alloy centre caps were made to replace broken black plastic ones, with Elise lotus badges made to fit wheels.
Lotus locking dust caps fitted.
After market sport 350 gear knob with Lotus emblem added.
Shortened the gear shifting - now much racier!
Smaller sports leather steering wheel replaced original (kept aside for refurbishing at later date).
Repaired fibreglass cracks repainted 3/4 of car where needed.
Brake callipers refurbished.
95% of rusted visual bolts replaced with polished shiny ones.
Sorted the "Red Hose Syndrome" with a SS Braided Clutch line.
Fitted Toyo RA-1's Race tyres, most excellent sticky's.
K&N Filter fitted.
Fire extinguisher mounted to driver’s side floor, attached to seat brackets.
New Esprit Turbo badges fitted to sides of car.
Mintex M1166 Race pads + up rated fluids.
Carbon Fibre B pillars from a 2 piece mould I made to replace my broken plastic ones, took ages but look the business.
Replaced both rear light clusters, look fresh and bright compared to the old ones.
Carbon fibre Engine lid, mould made from original. New lid looks amazing. Refurbished the grill, replaced bolts with shiny ss ones.
Refurbished front indicator lights, look bright and clear.
Carburettors were given a full birthday. Pulled and completely refurbished, basically brand new. New hoses, ties and fittings.
Both window motors died several times, fitted a 88XJ6 Jag left hand side motor for drivers side and right for left (work that one out Lol), seems to work well though.
Electrical gremlins cropped up from time to time - always seemed to be fixing them.
Replaced window switch in driver’s side door.
New internal driving light switches replaced.
New heater control panel.
Regreased rollers in window mechanism were clogged up with dirt.
Regreased Boot latch entry points and door locking points - locked myself out several times due to dry sticking latches.
Air horns replaced the sad cow horn.
Battery changed yearly. Plugs, filter, oil done less than every 2000Kms bit anal!
Drivers side rear vision mirrors overhauled.
Carpet in the boot pulling away from the sides, reglued and aligned it.
Cracked plastic cowling surrounding fans were plastic wielded.
Radiator fans were intermittent. Fixed electrical connector.
Hoses starting to perish. Basically 90% of all hoses have been replaced. Ties replaced with stainless polished shiny ones.
Crack in the Turbo housing, turbo pulled new housing and parts refurbished also actuator and waste gate like new.
Distributor cap in bad shape, replaced with new one, new set of leads.
Cracked fibreglass cowling under front of car, pulled and completely refurbished used stronger epoxy system.
Rusty exhaust manifold from turbo. Replaced with new one.
Springs a bit bouncy, been replaced in the front and lowered 1 inch.
This car now belongs to Tim Holland and resides in Tauranga NZ. I believe Tim is doing some more restoration work on it, so its in great hands.