Back after 15 years looking at Exiges again

Hi all

I thought I’d join to ask some noobie questions about Exiges but seems I signed up to the site 15 years ago when I was last looking at Exiges :slight_smile:

I am currently looking for my first Lotus. I’ve been considering an Evora as I’ve got 2 small kids so being able to squeeze them in on the odd journey would be useful and help persuade the wife. However, my heart says that I want something a little more raw/special. The Exige S1 has for a long time been a bit of a dream car and I think as time has gone on I think they have aged brilliantly and look they they could be the ideal weekend toy.

I’ve absolutely no idea where to start with the S1 so any help answering some dumb questions would be super helpful.

Thanks all


Bit more info and then let the dumb questions begin.

I’m 6ft 2" (mostly long legs) and looking at an Exige S1 as a weekend car that I can enjoy on the odd blast and taking to shows/meets, based in the UK. I’m not into trackdays so not looking for something super hardcore and while I want a car that’s going to excite me to drive speed isn’t that important to me. I’d say I am average with cars mechanically, I’ve restored a car and part built a GT40 replica so I like to tinker etc but with young family don’t have lots of time on my hands. So dumb question time:

  1. At 6ft 2" will I fit in an Exige S1?

  2. What sort of budget should I be looking for to get into an Exige S1?

  3. I’ve seen a lot of different engines in Exiges? What are the most common that owners have and how do they generally compare? Speed isn’t as important as usability/reliability.

  4. How often do cars come on the market in the UK?

  5. Are parts and servicing easily available and are there specialists about to support owners?

  6. Is there a buyers guide or tips of things I need to be aware of when buying one?



Hello Trev,

Welcome back!

I’m no expert so more knowledgable people will be along. I think some of the height things depends on the ol legs and torso combo. I’m only 5’10 so no issues!

Budget wise anywhere between 35-50k. Can all depend on what spec you’re after and more importantly condition. Naturally you’ll want one that’s got good history and has been well cared for.

Engine wise you have choices, VHPD for originality. You’ll also find Honda’s both NA and SC. If you like turbos occasionally you’ll see an Audi converted car pop up too. Again that’s down to preference and opinion. VHPD is grumpy and a fun engine, the Honda is possibly more robust and has its own VTEC character.

The market has been pretty quiet during this year as there’s only been 1-2 cars on sale during this time. Now there’s 5 on the market so you have some choice!

Parts are mostly available with only a couple of tricky things to source if required such as wheel arch liners. Where are you based? We can recommend someone near to you :+1:

As for a buyers guide maybe search this site as there must be one….otherwise keep asking questions…!

I cant add too much to the chat @Trev as I own a S2. However there are some fantastically knowledgeable people on here who are more than happy to help. Keep asking the questions!

Can’t fault Rob’s answer. All there in a nutshell. Hope you can join us.

Thanks for the initial info Rob, really useful. Price range seems to be quite broad, does the engine impact the value? So would an original VHPD car be worth more that a Honda powered car or are they all in the same ball park?

I had a look at the classifieds and there is one car on the market at £36k. It’s done 84k miles so wondered if this might be known on here and any thoughts? I am realistically probably in the £35-40k max budget range and providing parts are available would be open to something that might benefit a light restoration after maybe a year of ownership.

Mileage on a car of this age doesn’t bother me either as it’s more about condition given that most seem to be on at least their second engines.


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The car above is known on the forum. Use to wear s1 exg as a plate

I don’t suppose this car is known on the forum? I stumbled across it a few weeks ago which started my recent obsession with Exige’s again. It’s a S1 Elise with full Exige conversion. I’ve seen a couple of conversion builds like this on the forum so wondered if anyone knew the car. I was hoping to go and have a look but I discovered this one too late as it was sold.

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