Simon Pritchard's 1983
Simon Pritchard from Abergavenny, England, owns a 1983 Turbo Esprit in Calypso Red with a Tan Leather Interior.
Turbo Year: 1983 Colour: Calypso Red Interior: Tan Leather Driving Style: Normal Miles per year: 1,000 – 2,000 Owned Since: 2006 Purchase from: Private Serviced at: paul matty sportscars Other Cars: None Previous Lotus': None Why an Esprit: to be honest i am a lamborghini countach guy, however i have always had a soft spot for the turbo esprit as its a close relation to the countach shape.
it has the early eighties eccentricity that the countach had as as such turns heads wherever its driven.
the turbo esprit i now own is a labour of love as im now restoring it, however it only take that first drive to fall in love with one of britains finest supercars.
Upgrades: None Problems: after getting the car home i noticed the cooling fans were not kicking in, this led to a rusted relay that had corroded away. this was in turn removed with the terminal block and a complete new unit fitted.
I am now in the process of restoring the engine bay and ancillaries to concours level.'
Info: I am probably the tallest member of the club at almost 6ft 7 1/2 " and weighing in at 22 stone not the lightest either, yet after fitting some skinny seats in the car i find it comfortable to drive.'
Well it took me a while to actually find a lotus I liked, I wasn’t intentionally looking for a lotus as I had been looking for a Lamborghini countach, even a replica. I was quite lucky as a prova countach replica had come up on eBay and I took the trip unto Yorkshire to see it and bring it home.
Unfortunately I didn’t have the car and was sure I wouldn’t find anything I liked, needless to say I continued looking.
I spotted this lotus on the for sale section here and also on eBay, I emailed the owner and proceedings commenced.
At one point it looked like a drive to Norwich to pick it up and check it over, however I was lucky as a member of the forum offered to inspect it from me.
After the inspection all that was needed was a new windscreen, this was done and I heard nothing from the owner, so I started looking for another.
A few days later I received a call and the owner of my lotus was due in Cardiff so he could meet me at Newport, I was very happy at this and arranged the day.
The day I met the owner all seemed well and the car looked fantastic sat there, I looked at the service history which was excellent back to the pint of sale. I then signed the registration and the car became mine!!
The drive back was careful as it was raining quite heavily and as with my last performance car speed and the rain don’t mix, however upon coming onto the dual carriageway to abergavenny I was happy to see the sun come out and the carriageway was bone dry.
I then proceeded to open the car up and found that the car just flew without much effort, needless to say the grin on my face said it all!
Upon arriving in abergavenny I got caught at some traffic lights, as cars passed me they slowed down to look at the car, a woman in a Mercedes almost hit the car in front as she went past staring.
I got home parked the car and left it until the next day, in the morning I went out to start her up and this was a little difficult, she wouldn’t start for a while and when she did it was a little lumpy, I then heard what sounded like the exhaust spitting loudly.
I managed to get the car to a friend’s garage only to find most of the gaskets were shot, so I ordered new ones from sj sportscars and the next day fitted them.
I was really unhappy to find the spitting still there upon starting it and saw exhaust soot on one of the flexi joints in the exhaust silencer feed pipe, so this was cut out and a new flexi section fitted.
The spitting was still there so it led to a compression test which revealed that cyl 3 and 4 were low, and possibly sticky valves.
The head came off after a few tries and sent off to be worked on, the exhaust manifold face heads were corroded and had to be machined flat for a good gasket seal in future.
The wastegate was separated and the diaphragm was found to be in mint condition, 3 bolts were sheared so they were drilled out and re-tapped, the valve cleaned up the cups cleaned and de-rusted and then re-coated to prevent future rust.
The cam oil seals have all been replaced as have the buckets and shims, rear oil seals.
All that is left to do now is refit the head and cam towers, re-tension the belts, fit all new pipework and clamps, drain oil and coolant refill them and fire it up!! The plan after that is to replace every bushing on the car and change the shocks and discs with pads before the paintwork gets renewed.
In the meantime I have begun the detailing work on the parts not on the car, I began with polishing the fuel pressure regulator then I moved onto the starter motor I still have other items to polish or recoat but it won’t take long for them to be done.