Cadillac Fleetwood Brougham – Contemporary Masterpiece

Posted in "As the Standard of the World Turns", Cadillac, Cadillac: Masterpiece from the Master Craftsmen, Classic American Marques with tags , , , , , , , , , , on September 4, 2017 by 99MilesPerHour

There’s nothing like the traditional full-size Cadillac. From the admiring glances of envy…to the myriad standard comfort and convenience features and accessories – The stately Fleetwood Brougham was considered the most luxurious owner-driven Cadillac in the model hierarchy. Fleetwood-bodied Cadillacs are the epitome of grandeur with a poised dignity which was the hallmark of every traditional Cadillac motorcar.

The 1994 Fleetwood Brougham is endowed with a special type of spirited operation few luxury cars share. It’s the 1993-1996 rear-wheel drive Fleetwood series that is the last of the breed…the end of an illustrious era in motoring. They preclude the traditional luxury sedan which left a void in American automobiles no other luxury car can fill. The majestic 1994 Cadillac Fleetwood Brougham presents an encore performance…in the continuing saga of “As the Standard of the World Turns.”

It’s dramatically styled in its beauty and bearing. The formidable Fleetwood Brougham is the motorcar that represents the “Standard of the World” in a majestic fashion only Cadillac could create. These magnificent automobiles are more inspiring to behold and more rewarding to own than any other full-size luxury sedan.

Fleetwood models possess an eloquence and dignity befitting a flagship of its stature. The Brougham augmented the Fleetwood series with elegant appointments and signature features for luxury in the grand Cadillac manner. The 1994 Fleetwood Brougham carried on the tradition with glamour and distinction. Cadillac Fleetwoods remain America’s most aristocratic automobiles.

The gracious proportions of Fleetwood Brougham’s traditionally-inspired architecture evoke thoughts of the days gone by when we had the choice of a ‘real’ full-size luxury sedan…and a Cadillac – all in the same car. Fleetwood Brougham’s tall, extra-wide doors provide easy entry and exit. Sweeping fender lines flow systematically enhancing aerodynamic efficiency…the EPA rated the 1994 Fleetwood Brougham as 25 mpg highway.

Chrome bright work clads the lower body sides which include removable trim that mocks traditional rear-wheel fender skirts – Cadillac Style. Its stately silhouette is augmented by a long nose and short rear end design reminiscent of those fabulous classic Fleetwoods. Most important, Fleetwood Brougham’s engineering places a large sumptuous cabin between its occupants and the road…

The 1994 Fleetwood Brougham goes to great lengths to satisfy the most discerning driver. Its luxury length of 225.1” is even longer than that of the 1994 Lincoln Town Car’s mere 218.9” length. Fleetwood’s wide 78” stance beats the Town Car’s 76.9” width proudly.

Fleetwood Brougham rides upon a long 121.5” wheelbase compared to Town Car’s 117.4” wheelbase. Fleetwood Brougham’s 57.1” height beats that of the Town Car at 56.9”. So you see…the Fleetwood Brougham and its poised dignity is eminently qualified to carry the title of America’s largest production passenger automobile for the 1994 model year – Cadillac Style!

With its full-size luxury, excellent road manners, and Cadillac elegance…the 1994 Fleetwood Brougham is traditional splendor that one had come to expect from the brand. The last of the Fleetwoods are big and beautiful from bumper to bumper. Their substantial body on frame construction is configured as front engine rear-wheel drive – as a true Cadillac should be.

This is General Motors last attempt building full-size cars. The big B/D body used by Chevrolet for the Caprice/Impala SS, Buick for the Roadmaster, and of course Cadillac with the Fleetwood. One advantage to a rear drive car is the ability to move the front wheels forward in its overall design. Placing the front wheels ahead of the engine greatly enhances suspension dynamics which govern stability. The engine doesn’t have to be connected. Drive shaft, rear differential, and rear suspension adds weight to the back of the car. (And NO torque-steer!)

Fleetwood could be compared to a luxurious club room on wheels. Its spacious cloth or leather trimmed cabin was available in two distinctive trim levels. The standard Fleetwood sedan base priced at $33,990 – $34,615 is augmented by the optional “Brougham” luxury package.

The Brougham option upholstered with Prestwick knit cloth was $1680 while the leather trimmed version was $2250. This exclusive luxury package has a different seat cushion sew-style and upgraded appointments than the standard Fleetwood sedan.

The exterior is highlighted with a luxuriously padded vinyl roof treatment with “Brougham” nomenclature affixed to the rear sail panels. This deftly identifies it as Cadillac’s most luxurious owner-driven sedan. No other motorcar in its class can replicate the grandeur and dignity this supreme achievement in motoring offers. Passengers are ensconced in traditional 6-passenger comfort.

There’s room to stretch out with nearly 5′ of shoulder room. It has 38.7” of headroom available for front seat occupants and 39.1” for the rear passenger compartment. Fleetwood Brougham provides 42.5” of front seat legroom and 43.9” for rear seat passengers. Classic “Standard of the World” creations do not have to scream achievement…they simply whisper success. Fleetwood Brougham is renowned for legendary Cadillac comfort and convenience.

And…if Fleetwood Brougham’s spacious dimensions aren’t enough to prove its superiority in the luxury car segment, its impressive list of standard amenities will. Electronic components are bestowed throughout its svelte architecture. All season Electronic Climate Control Air Conditioning maintains optimum cabin comfort year-round. Once the temperature has been set no further intervention is required. This sophisticated system includes rear compartment heating/air conditioning ducts.

Power windows with ‘express down’ feature, power door locks, Cruise Control, Tilt Wheel adjustable steering wheel, and digital instrument cluster are the more basic amenities. For the 1994 model year, Fleetwood Brougham’s signature features include: driver’s memory seat, manual articulating head rests, power triple-element lumbar controls, illuminated rear seat overhead vanity mirrors, heated front seats, rear seat folding center armrest with dual cup holder and storage.

Still undecided? Additional standard amenities include: Twilight Sentinel electronic headlamp control, Solar Ray tinted glass, controlled-cycle windscreen wipers, Illuminated Entry System, Power deck lid release with pull-down feature, illuminated driver and front passenger visor vanity mirrors, power 55/45 6-way front seating w/power 2-way recliners, power heated right and left outside rearview mirrors, Pass Key II theft deterrent system, as well as power assisted steering and brakes.

Brougham’s deep-seated luxury is due in no small part to Cadillac’s patented ‘split frame’ seatback and cushion design. The wide lounge-type seats provide independent adjustment. A new window defog system allows its windscreen to be cleared in cold weather while maintaining heat flow to the lower portion of the cabin. They don’t refer to a Fleetwood Brougham as “The epitome of luxury” for nothing…

What do these two cars have in common?

The 1994 Fleetwood Brougham and the 1994 Chevrolet Corvette share a startling truth. The Cadillac Fleetwood’s power is derived from Corvette’s responsive new 2nd generation 5.7 litre 16-valve, 350 CID “LT1” V8 engine. Both Cadillac and Corvette versions are built with a cast iron block. The Vette is built with aluminum heads while Cadillac uses cast iron heads. Here’s a Cadillac with the heart of Corvette! The naturally aspirated engine is equipped with electronic sequential-port fuel injection. Dual-platinum tipped spark plugs require no scheduled tune-up for 100,000 miles. (Burn a good grade of premium fuel and you can go a lot farther than the captioned number)

The powerful new V8 is mated to the 460L-E GM Turbo Hydra-Matic 4-speed automatic transmission with electronic shift control, overdrive, and torque converter clutch. Engine and transmission are synchronized into a single synchronous power train unit for optimum efficiency. The unique power train combo provides greater horsepower and more torque at lower speeds thus yielding quicker, more confidant acceleration.

The formidable 5.7 litre LT1 cranks 260 hp @ 5,000 rpm with 454 Nm of peak torque @ 2,400 rpm. Longitudinal acceleration is rated as: 0-60 mph in 8.5 seconds, 0-100 mph in 22.6 seconds with a top speed in the 142 mph range. Impressive for a luxury sedan huh? It does the ¼ mile @ 88 mph in just 16.1 seconds. These specs are great when taken into consideration, this is a 4,506+ pound sedan.

Fleetwood Brougham’s full-frame construction permits the traditional Cadillac build. The “Magic Carpet Ride” was a signature Cadillac trademark. The 1994 edition uses the same logic. An independent front suspension has heavy-duty short/long arm upper and lower control systems. Brougham’s superior ride quality is further refined with coil springs, deflected-disc shock absorbers, and stabilizer bar.

The rear suspension is Cadillac’s 4-link drive with coil springs and stabilizer bar. Standard, is Cadillac’s exclusive Electronic Level Control that automatically calibrate the car’s ride height to maintain optimum poise under any road or load condition. ASRIIU full-range traction control with throttle relaxer aids its overall operational stability. Also standard is a Bosch ABSIIU three channel anti-lock braking system with power disc brakes fitted to the front axle and power assisted drums fitted to the rear axle.

Many thanks to Jim Hailey!

When one takes into consideration, luxury sedans such as the Fleetwood Brougham and what the brand builds today…it seems as though Cadillac has forgotten its loyal following, the same following that helped catapult the brand to the eminent status of “Standard of the World.”

The full-size Fleetwood was the first choice among bespoke coachbuilders for stretch limousines and professional vehicles of distinction. It was the largest regular passenger production automobile available in America for the genre. When the Fleetwood Brougham ceased production, it left coachbuilders without a traditional-size platform…

Spirited performance is just a tap of the accelerator pedal away. Deep within this elegant sedan beats the heart of a sports car. Corvette’s formidable 5.7 litre LT1 V8 engine assures responsive acceleration with extra power in reserve. Spacious six passenger accommodations, myriad standard comfort/convenience features and accessories, and that inherent Cadillac-Style makes the majestic Fleetwood Brougham a rare commodity in today’s mass-production euphoria. The bottom line: “Life’s not a cabaret…it’s a Hallmark card.” The 1994 Cadillac Fleetwood Brougham is another successful chapter…in the continuing saga of “As the Standard of the World Turns.”

1941 Fleetwood Series Sixty-Special

1956 Fleetwood Series Sixty-Special

1964 Fleetwood Series Sixty-Special

1970 Fleetwood Series Sixty-Special Brougham

1976 Fleetwood Talisman

1994 Fleetwood Brougham

Welcome to Greg’s World of NotoriousLuxury © 2017

DeVille Déjà Vu…

Posted in "As the Standard of the World Turns", Cadillac, Cadillac: Masterpiece from the Master Craftsmen with tags , , , , , , , , , , , on August 27, 2017 by 99MilesPerHour

The traditional Cadillac convertible is designed for those who seek the drama of open-air touring, without sacrificing luxury, comfort, or convenience. Cadillac marketed them as “The only luxury convertibles built in the land.” Their youthful vitality called for a nice leafy run on a gorgeous sun lit day. For the 1964 model year, America’s favorite luxury car was now available as a powerful new convertible coupé.

Its splendor remains unmatched in all of motordom. Timeless styling in their beauty and bearing has made every classic Cadillac convertible coupé among the most revered of all American luxury automobiles. There is no more magnificent manner in which to view the world than from behind the wheel of an automotive masterpiece from the Master Craftsmen. The 1964 Cadillac Series 6300 DeVille convertible coupé garners a triumphant standing ovation…in the continuing saga of “As the Standard of the World Turns.”

The classic DeVille convertible coupé for 1964 ushered in a resplendent new era in luxury motoring…Cadillac-Style. Rarely does an automobile become a classic legend in its own time such as this supreme achievement in motoring. The Cadillac DeVille series had become “America’s Favorite Luxury Car” and new for the 1964 model year was this ingénue – which proved its authority in both 4-door hardtop and 2-door hardtop coupé closed-body configurations – now available as a spirited open tourer. The legendary Cadillac DeVille convertible coupé was built from 1964 until 1970.

Their extraordinary grace and unrivaled elegance are complimented by the outstanding ride qualities that made Cadillac the most highly desired luxury car in the entire world. The architecture is a true mastery of symmetry and balance. It’s the opulent 1964 Cadillacs that feature the last of the classic body styles with the iconic tail fins. These cars are long, low, and extremely wide – built at a time when aerodynamic efficiency was for airplanes…and not motorcars. Each and every distinctive inch of its styling exploited the finesse of the formidable “Standard of the World.”

Series 6300 Coupe deVille

The 1964 Series 6300 DeVille sparkles with the pomp and splendor associated with the traditional Cadillac heritage. Bill Mitchell (1912-1988) brilliant Chief Design Engineer for General Motors, was the successor to Harley Earl (1893-1969), an equally talented Chief Design Engineer and founder of the GM Art and Colour Design Studio in 1935…both gave the Cadillac brand a definitive opulence that doesn’t exist in today’s world. Harley Earl and Bill Mitchell are two of the most prolific design engineers in the history of the automobile. The 1959 Cadillac is the last to be associated with Harley Earl.

The flamboyant 1959 Cadillac tail fin

The 1950s through the 1970s were the most illustrious decades for Cadillac further enhancing its “Standard of the World” reputation. The Bill Mitchell Era gave the Cadillac brand what he coined as “The Sheer Look” that encompassed a more contemporary, highly provocative intrigue. Cadillac built such a formidable reputation in the luxury car segment, no other luxury automobile could replicate its grandeur.

The Sheer Look removed the “shoulders” from the bodyshell allowing the roofline and side windows to flow right into each panel seamlessly. Mitchell’s designs included the traditional “Cadillac Sneer”…this could be described as a euphoric front-end design feature which declared a “looking down its nose”aristocracy to chase the competition into subservience… 

It was Mitchell’s regime that removed the “excess” the brand had taken on through the years. Humongous body quarter panels, blinding flashes of chrome trim, and tail fins large enough to qualify as aircraft were his targets for radical change. His designs became synonymous with opulence. He refined the Cadillac motorcar with a confluence of luxury and elegance escalating the brand to new heights in exclusivity and supremacy. The 1964 Cadillac models epitomize this forward thinking in the grand Cadillac manner on the grand Cadillac scale. Bill Mitchell promoted classic simplicity with unrivaled magnificence resulting in a remarkably distinctive type of motoring.

Meticulous Cadillac design engineering, and impeccable craftsmanship with an inexhaustible pursuit of exemplary fit & finish remained the mission statement. The 1964 Series 6300 DeVille convertible is a thoroughbred sought by convertible enthusiasts world-wide. That Cadillac drama augments its sweeping silhouette, with the convertible top lowered the car’s architecture seems twice as long. The previous 1963 design was refined further. For 1964, all models received a Cadillac “Beauty Treatment” to give them an even more regal stature.

The Series 6300 DeVille convertible coupé retains the poised dignity which was the hallmark of every classic traditional Cadillac. Its bold front-end ensemble features a massive double-deck grille design. The chiseled stand-up hood and quad headlamp clusters conveys a formal elegance. Distinctive parking/turn signal lamps are cleverly hidden within a design matching the grille work. The same design continues wrapping around the front fenders to conceal the unique-to-Cadillac cornering lamps.

Its rear-end design is celebrated by automobile aficionados of all ages world-wide. Those fabulous fins remain as prominent today as they did when Cadillac led the entire world in luxury car design. The tail fins were trimmed after they reached their summit in 1959. The 1960 model year began tailoring them neatly into the architecture. Each subsequent design refresh continued the trimming until the finale in 1964 when they disappeared forever from the 1965 model year forward.

Handsomely trimmed tail fins for 1964 housed one set of tail lamps above the lower set that are neatly encased within chromed nacelles behind an ingenious clear lens. At night when the head and tail lamps are illuminated, the lower lens glows red gently. When the transmission is shifted to reverse they glow white to light the way while backing up. A massive chrome bumper runs between the bumper end caps with a delicate grille work which compliments front end styling. The 1964 model year tastefully precludes familiar Cadillac signature styling to pave the way for the next generation design.

Model #64-63F body style #6267F 1964 Series 6300 DeVille two-door convertible coupé was base priced at $5,612, had a base shipping weight of 4,545 pounds, and only 17,900 were built for the model year which enhances their desirability. Cadillac built their 3,000,000th car during this model year posting sales with a record-breaking total production of 165,959 vehicles.

The 1964 DeVille’s silhouette emphatically showcases Cadillac’s design prowess with an eloquence unequalled in the world of fine automobiles. DeVille’s restrained use of ornamentation makes its styling timeless. The DeVille series is one of the longest running and most profitable models in Cadillac history capturing the title of “America’s favorite luxury car.” Cadillac’s preeminence in the luxury car segment reflects the good taste and achievement of its owner.

Any Cadillac convertible coupé is a rare combination of luxury and sheer magnificence. The 1964 DeVille projects the youthful vitality of its owner. It’s the special emphasis on interior elegance that sets it apart from other luxury automobiles. Genuine perforated leather was available in nine color combinations.

The DeVille convertible coupé is equipped as a traditional motorcar of this stature should be. Power windows, power seat, front seat folding center arm rest, remote control outside rearview mirror, electric clock, power fully automatic folding fabric roof, cornering lamps, power steering, and power brakes are just a few of the myriad comfort and convenience amenities featured as standard equipment for the 1964 DeVille convertible coupé.

The handcrafted interiors reflects Cadillac quality

This DeVille convertible is equipped with Cadillac’s optional fully automatic Comfort Control Air Conditioning system. It was new to the industry for the 1964 model year. The owner could set their preferred temperature when they first took delivery of the car…and it never required further intervention as long as they owned the car. This is the forerunner of the contemporary fully automatic Climate Control Air Conditioning system. The entire auto industry has now named their fully automatic systems “Climate Control.” This is the type of innovation the contemporary puddle-jumpers Cadillac pretends to build lack…

Interiors by Fleetwood are a many splendored thing…

Luxury and elegance are paramount with a classic “Standard of the World” creation. A Cadillac was consistently refined to maintain this title. For the 1964 model year the mighty Cadillac V8 was brilliantly enhanced to deliver more hp per pound of engine weight than its competitors. This new engine boasts a larger displacement than the 1963 V8. The engine was bored out to 429 CID which is 39 CID larger to crank 340 hp @ 4,600 rpm packing a prolific punch with 651 Nm of peak torque @ 3,000 rpm.

This astute capability is reflected in its longitudinal acceleration of 0-60 mph in 8.7 seconds, 0-100 mph in 25.8 seconds with a top speed in the 124 mph range…all Cadillac-Style. For kicks, it does the ¼ mile @ 83 mph in just 17.6 seconds. DeVille and Fleetwood models got the refined new Turbo Hydra-Matic 3-speed automatic transmission. Engine power is transmitted to the transmission via oil-filled torque converter which multiplies engine torque during acceleration in any of the three gear ranges.

This lightweight 7.0 litre 16-valve V8 has a cast iron block and cylinder heads with new high tensile strength bolts. It is mounted at three points in rubber. The 429 CID has upgrades which includes wider combustion chambers designed for the most efficient burning of air/fuel mixture. These new combustion chambers have a large cooling area at the vortex of the wedge to prevent power-wasting pre-ignition. The aluminum alloy slipper type pistons reduce friction; contoured larger, lighter piston heads increase turbulence providing maximum combustibility of the air/fuel mixture.

Further refinement includes new con rods/bolts, a longer stroke, a new crankshaft, and camshaft. The engine runs in five main bearings with overhead valves and hydraulic lifters. There were two carburetors available for 1964. One with the Carter Aluminum Four Barrel : AFB3655 “S  4-bbl downdraft for non a/c vehicles or AFB3656 with air conditioning. Also available was a Rochester 4-bbl downdraft: #7024030 for non a/c vehicles and #7024031 for vehicles with a/c. Both with equalized manifolding, mechanical fuel pump, dry-type air filter, and automatic choke. The new high-lift camshaft is designed to hold exhaust valves open longer than intake valves for more efficient engine operation. The wide cams minimize wear on both cams and tappets.

1964 Cadillacs are large front-engine rear-wheel drive luxury cars. The Series 6300 DeVille convertible coupé has the luxury length of 223.5”, is 79.7” wide, and rides upon a long 129.5” wheelbase. It is built as body on frame construction. GM’s rugged tubular X-frame permits lower body mounts for not only aesthetic qualities but also provides a lower center of gravity which is vital to a convertible’s well-being. Other advantages to this type of construction is a surfeit of head and hip room along with increased seat height for the patented Cadillac deep-seated luxury.

Fleetwood Series Sixty-Special hardtop sedan

Cadillac’s refined “Magic Carpet Ride” was re-tuned for 1964. NOTHING rides like a traditional Cadillac. The excellent weight distribution combined with its unique technology placed Cadillac in a league all its own. Exclusive “True Center Drive Line” isolates and cancels road noise and vibration before it reaches the cabin through a network of rubber mounted strut rods and rubber bushings. A one-piece propeller shaft transmits power quietly and resists vibration. Constant velocity joints at each end of the prop shaft cancels out forces that generate noise and vibration.

The traditional front suspension has upper and lower control arms with independent helical coil springs. Cadillac’s 4-link drive with independent helical coil springs makes up the rear suspension. The brand was famous for its boldly original mechanical components, unsurpassed attention to detail, and an inexorable insistence upon quality. This is how Cadillac acquired and maintained “Standard of the World” status.

Out of a tradition of excellence…the DeVille legend continues with style and grace that only the “Standard of the World” could create. For 1964, America’s favorite luxury car introduced the DeVille convertible coupé. This elegant open tourer Is powered by the new Cadillac 429 CID V8 engine. Drop the top…tap the accelerator…and 340 horses are at your command. This is a significant collectible because it is the first DeVille ragtop and it is also the finale for the Cadillac tail fins.

The “Standard of the World” continued Cadillac’s legend of automotive superiority in all its facets: styling that’s as classic as it is contemporary…of infinite care and design of its manufacturer…of greater measures of comfort and convenience…but most important, the higher levels of owner pride, prestige, and lasting value. The 1964 Series 6300 DeVille convertible coupé continued this legacy of automotive greatness.

Many thanks to Jim Hailey for the use of the photos for the 1964 Series 6300 DeVille convertible coupé subject car. Special thanks to Bob Adams Classic Cars, and Daniel Schmitt Classic Cars – the best in the business – for the use of their photos of these beautiful classic Cadillac motorcars.

Classic Cadillac convertible showcase:

1936 V16 convertible

1947 Cadillac Series 62 convertible

1948 Cadillac Series 62 convertible 

1950 Cadillac Series 62 convertible

1953 Series 62 Eldorado convertible

1960 Series 62 convertible

1964 Series 6400 Eldorado convertible

1970 DeVille convertible…the finale

The traditional Cadillac was the most aristocratic of all motorcars. The real Cadillac motorcar has an extremely faithful cult following. The “Standard of the World” still graces the landscape eloquently which has garnered the respect and admiration from connoisseurs of fine automobiles world-wide. Cadillac built the only true luxury convertibles in America. The 1964 Series 6300 DeVille convertible coupé is both dramatically beautiful and remarkably responsive. Any Cadillac convertible is a most avant-garde manner to enhance any occasion where fine automobiles gather. The traditional Cadillac DeVille legend lives…in the continuing saga of “As the Standard of the World Turns…”

“Déjà Vu…could you be the dream that I once knew…is it you? Déjà Vu…could you be the dream that might come true…shining through? I keep remembering me…I keep remembering you – Déjà Vu…”

Greg’s World IS NotoriousLuxury © 2017

Lotus Exige “S” LF1: The Paradigm Of Success

Posted in Legendary Lotus Series with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , on July 31, 2017 by 99MilesPerHour

Colin Chapman’s paradigm is ensconced within his famous rhetorical quote which became the company impetus – “Adding power makes one faster on the straights…subtracting weight makes one faster everywhere.” Lotus became synonymous with speed. The Lotus legend continues. Let’s fast forward to the 21st Century. Colin Chapman’s philosophy of weight reduction with aerodynamic architecture is the basis for the formidable Lotus Exige. It’s a car suited for the purist who knows the breed well.

Time dulls the impact of some automobiles in its class…however, a Lotus goes down in history as a true masterpiece in every respect. Its predecessors – the sophisticated first generation of high-performance behemoths that includes the Elite, Elan, and Europa are the pioneers which paved the super highway of success for the brand. The Lotus Exige is your best decision ready to be made if unambiguous high-performance, superb overall handling, and superior automotive concepts are what you seek. Aside from its technical superlatives – the Lotus Exige is drop-dead gorgeous!!!

Colin Chapman (1928-1982) hid his light under a bushel. The name of that bushel is Lotus! It was the very heart and soul of this man. The driving force behind the man…was his love for automobile racing and his indomitable strive for absolute perfection. Unlike the average CEO…Colin Chapman was actively involved with every aspect of his business – from the boardroom right straight through the assembly hall – he loved to place himself strategically in the center of everything.

When things went well, one received the twinkle of his blue eyes and a gratuitous nod of approval with a hearty thank-you. Colin Chapman would adamantly refuse to accept error – if one would not put their best foot forward, the twinkle in his eye quickly turned torrential grey and his demeanor became as fierce and unrelenting as a hurricane. This is how Lotus Cars home based in Norfolk, United Kingdom has become superfluous with legendary high performance…precision engineering…and automotive innovation.

Lotus Exige “S”

The Lotus Exige is an extremely swift two-seat sports car based upon the highly successful Lotus Elise and has been built in various configurations since 2000. The Exige “S” packs its prolific punch with a supercharger. Exige is created from a race-bred heritage. It’s this intrinsic knowledge which exemplifies the brand. Lotus road-going models aren’t mere production sports cars – they are race cars dressed in street clothes. Every Lotus is destined to become a cherished collectible taking its place in automotive history.

One such coveted Collector’s Series is the Exige “S” LF1 built at a highly restricted pace of only 81 vehicles for the 2014 model year. When they were in build their price equated to around $105,000 USD (even though they were not imported to the US) which is about a $10,000 premium over the Exige “S” model. The LF1 is a culmination of Lotus fashionably forward-thinking augmented by the craft of 21st Century tuning expertise. This type of refinement enhances the technological competence with a touch of dynamism further reinforcing Colin Chapman’s theory –

This distinctive limited edition is built to celebrate 81 Lotus grand prix victories. The LF1 is all decked out exhibiting Lotus F1 livery-inspired black with contrasting gold accents for both exterior and interior trim. The bold black and gold ensemble represents livery colors from the 1970s and 1980s which blends Exige’s contemporary sophistication with its Formula 1 racing heritage.

Each car is sequentially numbered to commemorate a specific victory in Lotus history from the very first in 1960 at Monaco to the 81st in 2013 in Australia with Kimi Raikkonen. “LF1” badges immediately identifies this unique collectible. Every Lotus brings an illustrious motorsport heritage. Why…ask any Lotus owner. Wouldn’t trade my Elan Sprint for all the tea in China! Especially now when the first-generation Lotus Elan is gaining such admiration as a true definitive British classic sports car –

The Exige “S” LF1 pays homage to Formula 1 Team success with Lotus resplendence. Riding a tight 90.6” wheelbase, the LF1 sports aggressively styled gold 17” wheels fitted to the front axle with 18” mounted to the rear. The wheels are mounted to Pirelli P-Zero Trofeo Tyres. Subtle red accents flow throughout the vehicle in a tasteful contrast…highlighting the lower front-end valance with hood and roof striping back to and ending with the underside of the rear wing. Classic red racing-inspired four piston calipers accent the two-piece high performance brake discs.

The Exige “S” Lf1 is powered by an alloy 3.5 litre transverse mid-mounted supercharged 24-valve Toyota 2GR-FZE V6 engine. It’s equipped with a 4-Mode Lotus Dynamic Performance Management system with launch control, an exhaust-bypass valve and optimized suspension settings. It also includes Variable Valve Timing, a 9-multiport sequential fuel injection system, and a Harrop HTV 1320 supercharger with an Eaton TVS technology intercooler. Its sophisticated electronics includes a direct ignition system and Lotus Electronic Throttle Control system. The engine is mated to a 6-speed manual gearbox with sports ratios, constant mesh helical gears and open differential. A Bosch Electronic Differential Lock aids traction and stability for this rear-wheel drive sports car.

The Exige “S” LF1 is constructed using composite body panels with an extruded aluminium bonded chassis structure. This lightweight 2,592 lbs. sports car has a wind cheating drag coefficient of 0.433. The front splitter, rear diffuser, and wing are designed to enhance the car’s aerodynamics.

Its fully independent suspension is equipped front and rear with roll bars for aggressive road-holding stability. Bilstein high performance gas-filled dampers and Eibach coaxial coil springs are fitted to the front and rear. Sophisticated rack and pinion steering provides the driver with excellent maneuverability. Standard equipment includes Lotus/Bosch tuned ABS, Hydraulic Brake Assist, Electronic Brake Distribution, and Cornering Brake Control.

The inner world of the Exige “S” LF1 intrigues the senses with leather, Alcantara, and carbon fibre. It is immediately set apart from its Exige “S” siblings by its exclusive carbon fibre build plate. This alerts passengers to the fact this is a piece of Lotus history. The black leather clad interior is highlighted with gold accents in true Lotus motorsport tradition. Embroidered “LF1” logos augment seatbacks, head restraints, and floor mats. The LF1’s Formula 1 heritage and contemporary values are presented as an abstract work of automotive art.

Distinctive F1 livery colors are coordinated throughout 

Meet Colin Chapman’s high-performance legends

The Elite, Elan, and Europa models are Colin Chapman’s 20th Century algorithms which set the stage for today’s high-performance athletes. His indomitable obsession and artful genius created processes and industry innovation that became an epiphany changing sports car design forever.

Formula 1 provenance is the underlying order of every Lotus automobile. The Exige “S” is the extremely swift supercharged sports car based upon these formidable principles. Its capability of achieving 0-60 mph in less than 4 seconds made it the ideal candidate in 2014 as the basis for a distinctive limited-edition sports car to celebrate Lotus historical grand prix victories.

The Exige “S” LF1 was built at a highly restricted pace of 81 vehicles. Each one is serialized sequentially to commemorate the historic grand prix victories from the first in 1960 to the 81st in 2013. The Exige “S” LF1 Formula 1 livery black and gold clad collectibles are worthy additions to your collection – if you get lucky. Hopefully…this will be a short-lived interregnum between grand prix victories for the brand. The Exige is a thoroughbred built in the formidable Lotus tradition. It’s a sporting machine Colin Chapman would be proud to bear his name.

Photos are courtesy of the Lotus Media Club

The Lotus Exige “S” LF1 IS NotoriousLuxury © 2017

Lotus Legends: Elite Sophisto

Posted in Legendary Lotus Series, Lotus with tags , , , , , , on June 25, 2017 by 99MilesPerHour

The Innovative…Beautiful…and Efficient Lotus Elite 

While the other auto manufacturers stretched their offerings to outrageous lengths, added a ton of bright work, and included fins large enough to qualify as aircraft – Colin Chapman did just the reverse…he thought in terms of classic simplicity. His forward thinking involved compact, lightweight aerodynamic architecture with component consolidation for the drivetrain.

His famous rhetorical quote sums his intentions quite eloquently: “Adding power makes one faster on the straights…subtracting weight makes one faster everywhere.” Colin Chapman’s theory yields the most highly collectible Lotus of today, the exceptional Elite. This is the first road-going model for the brand. It’s a truly remarkable car…like champagne and diamonds –   

The Lotus Elite’s styling is fashionably unique for the day. This is the first plastic composite car with a structure built as a single integral unit. It’s designed by Peter Kirwan-Taylor. The sleek design has a drag coefficient of 0.29 and can achieve 40 mpg. (And this car was developed at a time when most cars were sucking the gasoline pumps dry!)

Elite’s lightweight design is augmented by fibreglass monocoque construction. This unique design does not use a separate metal chassis. (Do I detect an ugly skeptical note in your voice?) Underneath the exquisite styling small steel sections are bonded into the fibreglass structure at strategic points. This novel manner of construction boasts inherent rigidity. The stresses at the race tracks proved its lasting qualities. 

Only 1,048 Lotus Elites were built during its production from 1957–1963. More than half of these were imported to the USA. This rarity enhances the Elite’s desirability in the classic car market. The production glass reinforced polyester monocoque for these required 57 molds to make, which was vastly complex and obscenely expensive. Maximar of Sussex, a boat building company, made the first 285 bodyshells. The Elite’s double-skinned structure was a challenge which took its toll on quality control. No two bodyshells were quite the same in precise measurement or materials.

Chapman switched to the Bristol Aircraft Company for the SII version. This was the largest fibreglass contractual agreement in Great Britain at the time. The new bodyshells were refined and far superior to Maximar’s reducing the number of molds required to 43 instead of the initial 57 molds. The Lotus Elite was grossly expensive in its overall production which put a strain on corporate finances biting deeply into company profits. This put Chapman on the brink of bankruptcy. (The Lotus Elan was the saving grace which bailed the company out of the red!)

The Lotus Elite established its place among the classiest sports cars in automotive history. Its cabin designed by Peter Cambridge, reflects that of a stylish road rally tourer projecting classic simplicity. There’s nothing ostentatious per Colin Chapman’s theory of form and functionality. It features a full complement of instrumentation to include speedometer, tach, fuel gauge, water temperature, oil pressure, and battery charge. High-back Dunlop seats, a 16” wood grain steering wheel, and carpeting all compliment Elite’s sporting nature.

There are no frills, no trendy bells and whistles…this car is built for speed. Most European sports cars designed for speed adopt the minimalist approach; therefore, the driver isn’t distracted by fancy trim detailing as well as radios. The list of options for the Lotus Elite included a heater, windscreen washers, and seat belts. Elite Series II has stiffer Royalite thermoplastic door trim with door pockets which double as arm rests. Each side window is made from plexiglass and is removable. The cabin is tastefully built for speed, not luxury  

Under the bonnet resides the Coventry Climax ‘FEW’ powerplant. If properly maintained it is a very reliable power source. It was expensive to build and even more so to rebuild. The Series I aluminium 1216 cc 8-valve in-line 4 cylinder naturally aspirated engine (Series I 1959-1960) is equipped with a single SU 1.5” horizontal carburetor. It produces 75 hp @ 6,100 rpm with 104 Nm of peak torque @ 3,750 rpm. Longitudinal acceleration is rated as 0-60 mph in 10.3 seconds, 0-100 mph in 44 seconds with a top speed in the 101 mph range. It does the ¼ mile @ 78 mph in 17.5 seconds. The engine is mated to the MG 4-speed manual gearbox. Lotus Elite is a front-engine rear-wheel drive sports car.

Series II (1961-1963) is fitted with Twin SU H4 1.5” carburetors which crank 83 hp @ 6,250 rpm with 102 Nm of peak torque @ 4,750 rpm. This version acquired a 4-branch fabricated exhaust manifold and a 3-piece alloy intake manifold. Heavy-duty bottom end construction with 3 main bearings and a deep sump flange on the block gives it more power. The engine has wedge-shaped combustion chambers that house unusually large valves (1.28” intake/ 1.15” exhaust). The engine is mated to the ZF 4-speed manual gearbox. Longitudinal acceleration is rated as 0-60 mph in 9.8 seconds, 0-100 rpm in 33.5 seconds with a top speed in the 103 mph range. It does the ¼ mile @ 81 mph in 17.7 seconds. 

Special variations of the Lotus Elite were built with extreme high-performance in mind. A Special Edition Super 95 Stage II engine is equipped with a high-lift 3-bearing cam, and ignition alterations. It cranks 95 hp @ 6,500 rpm with 100 Nm of peak torque @ 5,000 rpm. The head has 40 thou shaved off to provide a higher compression ratio of 11.0:1 which can hit 7,200 rpm without flexing. Many of the Super 95 models are fitted with Twin Weber 38 DCO carburetors and ZF 4-speed manual gearboxes. The Super 95 has a top speed in the 125 mph range. Only 23 Super 95 versions were built.  

If you want even more bang for your buck, the Super 100 version cranks 100 hp @ 7,200 rpm with 100 Nm of peak torque @ 5,000 rpm and has a top speed in the 130 mph range. Only 6 Super 100 versions were built. The Super 105 cranks 105 hp @ 7,200 rpm with 100 Nm of peak torque @ 5,000 rpm with a top speed in the 130–137 mph range. Only 6 Super 105 versions were built. These fully balanced racing engines were equipped with high-lift 5-bearing cam shafts and 80 thou shaved off the heads to give a higher compression ratio of 11.5:1 and can hit 7,900 rpm without flexing. Both Super 100 and 105 versions are equipped with Twin Weber 38 DCO carburetors and ZF 4-speed manual gearboxes. The 5-bearing versions are not suitable for road use because of high loadings imposed on the valve gear. 

Lotus Elan Type 26R Competition fixed head coupe

Lotus Europa Type 47

Lotus Elite

The Lotus Elite is a revolutionary automotive design which is the first road-going model for the brand. It benefits highly from Colin Chapman’s racing expertise. The Lotus Elite is really a race car in street clothes. Its technology was far ahead of its time. Elites are a culmination of a race-bred heritage, excellent handling, superb road-holding abilities, and outstanding overall ride quality. The one-piece fibreglass monocoque construction is the first of its kind. This lightweight design sports a mere 0.29 drag coefficient making it superfast by all means. Lotus Elite is one of the most highly coveted collectible classic sports cars in existence. Only 1,048 Lotus Elites were built from 1957-1963. This rarity enhances its desirability even further…. 

The Lotus Elite is aesthetically appealing from any angle

Here are 3 of the most coveted classics in automotive history

The indomitable Lotus Elan (1962-1973)

The totally avant-garde Lotus Europa (1967-1975)

The superlatively dynamic Lotus Elite (1957-1963)

…welcome to Greg’s World

Greg’s World IS NotoriousLuxury © 2017

 

Lotus Legends: Europa Twin Cam Ideology

Posted in Legendary Lotus Series with tags , , , , , , , on May 6, 2017 by 99MilesPerHour

Lotus power can be compared to a force that is fierce and unrelenting as a hurricane. Whether clothed in race car attire or simply as a road-going street version, the name Lotus equates to a serendipitous encounter few sports cars can replicate. The mighty “Big Valve” Twin Cam engine produces fury the competitors envy. It proves the theory that humongous engine displacement with numerous cylindrical configurations are not really necessary to produce prodigious, jaw-dropping, pavement-blistering performance. The first generation Type 74 Lotus Europa Twin Cam Special is a synergistic approach to very, very high performance.

By Gtb2 – Europa S1 1967, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=12079462

The Lotus Europa began as the name implies targeting European markets. They were launched initially for French markets as the S1 Type 46 with a Renault engine and gearbox in December of 1966, deliveries started in February 1967. They weren’t available for British and US markets until the S2 version of 1969.

Here’s a word of caution regarding the purchase of the S1 Europa: DON’T! The fibreglass body is bonded to the chassis. The body must be cut away to replace the chassis which is atrociously expensive. The Renault engine is not as good as the Lotus Twin Cam and parts are scarce for a rebuild which is inevitable. Most enthusiasts have switched out the engine to the Twin Cam. The S1 Europas are also very basic. The interiors have fixed non-operational windows, no floor carpeting, fixed seating positions (floor pedals are adjustable), and an aluminum faced dash.

1967 Lotus Europa S1 Type 46

The Europa was homologated as the Type 47 to become a full race version. The engine, suspension, and tires were tweaked to produce 165 hp reaching a top speed in the 143 mph range.

1969 Lotus Europa S2, Elite Garage Zuzwil SG, Switzerland

The following year brought revisions, the S1A & B had removable windows and a wood faced dash. The S2 model introduced in 1968 brought significant improvements to the Europa. A separate backbone chassis made everyone happy from the auto insurance industry to the restoration enthusiasts are tackling today. Electric power windows removed the inherent claustrophobia, adjustable seats, carpeting, and a polished wood dash made the interior more civilized and refined. The most highly desirable Europa models are the Twin Cam variants launched in December 1971. The “Big Valve” Special debuted in 1972. The last of the first generation Lotus Europa models exited the assembly hall in 1975.

The Lotus Europa sports a silhouette like no other car. It’s not an unrealistic, over-achieving, airbrushed, anorexic glam-car at the tracks, it is unregarding, gutsy, and is a real sports car. So it’s not drop dead gorgeous, it’s not perfect – but it is an athletic behemoth capable of awesome, jaw-dropping performance. It’s a low-slung mid-engine dream. The fibreglass body shell has a drag coefficient of a mere 0.29 making it superbly aerodynamic. The Europa’s bold and unconventional design bucks status quo for the day.

The Twin Cam rear body styling is trimmer than the Renault Europa which not only improves rear visibility but also makes them more aesthetically appealing. The Europa’s compact dimensions aided stability and aerodynamic efficiency. Twin Cam versions are stretched 1” longer to accommodate the larger engine.

The 157.5” overall length is augmented by a 92” wheelbase and 64.5” width. The Lotus Europa is only 42.5” in ride height. Its handcrafted fibreglass body shell has rigid torsional strength with a separate steel backbone chassis. This manner of build is void of squeaks and rattles. It also makes restoration easier; as with all first generation Lotus models – the chassis must be replaced at some point in time.

Initially, the Type 74 Europa Special was to be limited to 200 vehicles. Response to this new car was so great it continued through the end of production. Out of a total of 4,710 Type 74 Europas, 3,130 are built as Specials. The first 100 Big Valve Europa Specials were painted black with gold pin striping honoring the Team Lotus 1972 F1 World Championship title. This is the livery color of the GP cars for the sponsor which the models are named “John Player Specials.”

More color choices were introduced later on during the production tenure. Twin Cam models present a sportier appearance with signature features such as lower profile rear buttresses and a small front air dam under the chin. Twin fuel filler caps for the Twin Cam Europas are another distinguishing feature. The two fuel tanks total 12.5 gallons which is an increase over previous models.

Lotus 72 F1 in John Player Special Livery colors compliments of http://www.f1fanatic.co.uk/2010/01/16/great-f1-cars-in-pictures-lotus-72-autosport-international/autosportinternational_lotu/

By now, you can clearly see the Type 74 Twin Cam Europa is the best of all models. The Special is equally as feisty as the formidable Elan Sprint with the “Big Valve” powerplant. This naturally aspirated 2-valve per cylinder in-line 1558cc 4-banger is equipped with Twin Dell ‘Orto DHLA40 carburetors. The Big Valve engine has a cast iron block topped with an aluminium head. It’s equipped with a DOHC and the crankshaft runs in five main bearings.

This version of the Twin Cam cranks 126 hp @ 6,500 rpm with 153 Nm of peak torque @ 5,500 rpm. It redlines @ 6,800 rpm. The gearbox is mounted behind the engine and final drive forming a transaxle. It is inverted to provide forward gears. The Big Valve Twin Cam produces more torque; therefore, requires the heftier type 365 heavy-duty 5-speed manual gearbox.

Longitudinal acceleration is rated as: 0-60 mph in 6.1 seconds, 0-100 mph in 15.7 seconds, 0-120 mph in 28.3 seconds with a top speed in the 124-128 mph range. It does the ¼ mile @ 94 mph in just 14.7 seconds. The gearbox is a bit awkward and takes a bit of getting used to because of the cable linkage. It’s a mid-engine rear-drive rocket. 

The Europa Special has a separate fibreglass body shell and steel box-section backbone chassis as the Elan. It is a different configuration since the engine is longitudinally rear mid-mounted. The engine sits just behind the cockpit. Europas have a 56/44 rear-biased weight distribution. A 4-wheel independent suspension uses basically the same front suspension as the Elan. The front has upper and lower wishbones, spring dampers, and an anti-roll bar for stability. Lotus Europas use a lengthened version of the Herald-derived Alford & Adler rack and pinion steering system with a modified coupling to the Herald column.

The rear suspension features a large box steel trailing arm on either side anchored to the chassis in line with the cockpit bulkhead, fixed length drive shafts, coil springs, and telescopic dampers. A steel crossmember is bolted to the chassis above the gearbox to provide the mounts for the spring dampers. Europa Specials are equipped with the Girling brake system 9.5” discs fitted to the front axle and 8x 1 ¼ “drums to the rear. There are conversion kits available today to convert the rear brakes to disc type. Servo assisted brakes are standard for Twin Cam and Special models. The Lotus Europa continues Colin Chapman’s basic lightweight theory.

Lotus Twin Cam and Special models have more civilized cockpits than their Spartan predecessors. The foot wells are a bit larger and lower due to the extra 1” longer wheelbase. More sound deadening materials insulates the cabin. A new oatmeal color was added as an option. The last of the line Europa Specials incorporate cord inserts into the upholstery.

Carpeting and wood veneer dash accents makes them more upscale. Electrically operated windows, and comprehensive instrumentation adds to their more luxurious stature. The Lotus Twin Cam and Special models offer excellent overall performance, outstanding handling attributes, and a more relaxed attitude at high speeds as it adheres to the pavement like a magnet. This fierce Lotus flexes its muscles…as it minds its manners –

Lotus Europa Type 47

Lotus Europa S2 Type 54

Lotus Europa Type 74 Twin Cam Special

Colin Chapman’s forward thinking made the Lotus brand ahead of the pack for the day. The Europa Twin Cam Special with its mid-rear longitudinally mounted engine came about when Lamborghini and Matra were the only auto manufacturers to use such daring innovation. The most desirable Europa models are endowed with the mighty “Big Valve” Twin Cam engine. It moves the Europa with aplomb. This sleek, low-slung, brute has its own unique panache; there’s nothing else on the road quite like it.

The ultimate addition to your classic muscle car collection would be an Elan Sprint and a Europa Twin Cam Special – talk about a sophisticated power couple…this is the epitome. The Europa models are true to Colin Chapman’s philosophy regarding his minimalist approach with lightweight construction, aerodynamic efficiency, and ingenious component consolidation. What the ugly duckling lacks in appearance…it more than makes up for it in inexhaustible power and outstanding performance. The Lotus Europa Twin Cam and Twin Cam Special models are in a league of their own –

Lotus Elan Sprint

Special thanks to Conceptcarz, Favcars.com, F1 Fanatic, Wikipedia, Wallpaperup, and Elite Garage Zuzwil SG, Switzerland for the use of their photos of these extremely rare sports cars.

Welcome to Greg’s World…

…Greg’s World IS NotoriousLuxury © 2017

Lotus Legends: The Formidable Elan

Posted in Legendary Lotus Series, Lotus with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , on April 3, 2017 by 99MilesPerHour

The Lotus Elan  is timeless in every respect…

One of the most prolific English roadsters ever to scorch the pavement is the insuperable first generation Lotus Elan. The British have always had a certain je ne sais quoi with their bold and unconventional approach to extremely quick two-seat sports cars. The Lotus Elan exhibits daring innovation for its day with its chic fibreglass monocoque bodyshell. Besides…there’s more than enough power beneath its bonnet to huff & puff & blow the doors off the competitors should they not get out of its way quickly. The Lotus Elan is most definitely a wolf clothed in sheep’s attire. Naturally…when the name “Lotus” is spoken – it conjures up racing legends.

The Elan goes way past “serious.” In fact, it was such a hot and unconventional sports car for the 1960s, it forced cars in its class into an existential identity crisis – immediately. The first generation Lotus Elan had a very successful production run from 1962 – 1973. It was no surprise when the Lotus Elan was chosen to be driven by the quintessential British ministry sleuth…the indomitable Emma Peel, John Steed’s counterpart in the 1960s cult classic detective TV series “The Avengers.” The producers wanted an automobile of irreverent maverick…one to suit an unconventional femme fatale – Mrs. Emma Peel was far ahead of her time – so is the first generation Lotus Elan…

1957 Lotus Elite

Lotus evolution…

The Elan replaced the Lotus Elite. Indeed, it was time for something new. The Elite was breaking the bank draining financial resources without a significant gain in profit. In 1957, The Lotus Company owned by Chapman was on the verge of bankruptcy. Colin Chapman had a really expensive racing habit. The Lotus Elite was very expensive to build. The custom crafted all-aluminium engine built by Coventry Climax was one of the largest expenses. The all-fibreglass construction was also expensive to build.

The Elite boasts unique fibreglass reinforced plastic monocoque construction which replaced the previous separate body/chassis components. It used this unique composite material for the entire load-bearing structure. The front end used a steel sub frame to support the engine and front suspension. There is also a metal fitting at the windscreen for mounting door hinges and a provision for jacking the car off the ground.

Take into consideration, this was before composite body structures were perfected. There were also the issues of the suspension attachment components pulling out of the composite structures. The first 250 bodies caused major grief and production was switched to a different manufacturer. Despite the Elite’s idiosyncratic attributes the body design is very aesthetically appealing. In my opinion, it is one of the world’s most beautiful classic sports cars. One could say, lessons learned from the Elite helped to perfect the Elan series.

Lotus Elan

The world’s finest wine…in a plastic bottle –

The Lotus Elan sports architecture which rivals that of 21st century sports cars.  The Elan proves “beauty is not only skin deep.” It has a mere drag co-efficient of 0.45 making it a sleek aerodynamic envelope of technology. The Elan is the first production automobile to feature minor impact-resistant, foam-filled fibreglass bumpers. The curvaceous bodyshell is “Fibreglass Reinforced Plastic” or FRP…sound familiar? Lambo, Ferrari, and Aston Martin are just a few of the contemporary sports cars which use an updated version of FRP technology.

Lotus is one of the pioneers to use this method; it was not an industry-wide utility at the time. This is a composite material consisting of a polymer matrix reinforced with glass, carbon, aramid, or basalt. The Elan is the first road-going Lotus to be built using a fibreglass bodyshell with a steel backbone chassis. Colin Chapman called this a “Fold on the dotted line” steel chassis. This type of construction strengthens the load-bearing structure of the car to support the engine and suspension components. The lightweight bodyshell fitted to the rugged steel backbone chassis enhances overall performance while it optimizes the car’s handling attributes.

1962 Lotus Elan…a bold & beautiful brute

The iconic symbol of success…

To quote an advertisement from 1970: “Who made it before the others? Who got here quicker than most? Who arrived ahead of the crowd? Who has asserted himself all the way making the others content to follow? Answer – The man in the Elan…” Impressive? Very. The Lotus Elan is an adrenalin inducing sports car that is the perfect synthesis of a racing-inspired heritage combined with sheer elegance. It is for the enthusiast who wants to be in total control of his car with precise handling and blistering performance. Because of this car’s technical sophistication, the Elan became Lotus Cars’ first commercial success.

Anthony Colin Bruce Chapman (1928-1982) aka Colin Chapman was a British mastermind in every respect. He was an astute design engineer associated with prodigious innovation in the automotive industry. He founded Lotus Cars in 1952. His knowledge of aeronautical engineering influenced his automotive technical advances. He had a fascinating view on horsepower vs lightweight construction: “Adding power makes you faster on the straights – subtracting weight makes you faster everywhere.”

The Elan conforms to Colin Chapman’s technical philosophy: lightweight design, aerodynamically enhanced architecture, with racing-inspired brakes, transmission, and suspension. Ron Hickman designed this car as the “Type 26 Elan” in the late 1950s. This legendary sports car was introduced at the Earls Court Motor Show in October 1962. Some of the first Elans were available as kits to be assembled by the owner.

Colin Chapman was active in all aspects of the Lotus Group. He worked throughout the factory as well as with the administrative demands. Chapman was seen looking over the design of a new car, running a board room meeting, as well as watching dials in the engine test house. His decisions were quick and decisive. No aspect of the Lotus Group from complicated designs to the colors for the next year’s motor show escaped his attention. He was known for his “natural smile” and was quick to praise – but poor workmanship transformed him immediately!

 Ferocious Lotus…élan

Automotive aficionados consider the Elan as the most prolific Lotus of all time. The Elan is the benchmark for modern sports car design. A “real” sports car doesn’t have to prove the point with massive engine displacement and numerous cylinders. A total of 12,224 were built from its inception in 1962 until the final Sprint exited the assembly hall in 1973. The Elan’s spirited performance and exquisite handling attributes maintains its popularity today. And the best part of all…Lotus Elan ownership requires no outrageous maintenance or restoration eccentricities. The Lotus Elan was far ahead of its time. It bristles with technology.

The robust 1558cc in-line 4-cylinder Lotus Twin Cam is inherently a very reliable engine if properly maintained. Its two valves per cylinder are positioned within hemispherical combustion chambers. The cast iron 116E Ford Cortina block has a light alloy cylinder head bolted on. The intake manifold is cast as an integral part of the cylinder head. The water pump is integral with the timing chain cover. Contrary to popular belief, the water pump is virtually trouble-free providing the “V-belt” that also runs the dynamo has proper tensioning.

This type of component consolidation was expedited to comply with Colin Chapman’s philosophy of using one mechanical part for as many purposes possible. A single roller chain positioned at the front of the engine drives the double overhead camshafts. A cast iron crankshaft runs in five main bearings. The four bolt crankshaft on S1 & S2 models incorporate a rope seal between the sump and the block. This seal requires service intervals at 15,000 miles. The later S3, S4, and Sprint models with the six bolt crankshaft utilizes an oil-tight rubber lip seal which seals against leakage.

It moves with tremendous verve and élan…

Lotus is synonymous with legendary performance. The Lotus Twin Cam is a naturally aspirated engine. The Elan used three different carburetion variations from the factory during its production. The S1, S2, and S3 models were factory equipped with Twin Weber 40DCOE carburetors. This fuel system produces 105 hp @ 5,500 rpm with 146 Nm of peak torque @ 4,000 rpm. Longitudinal acceleration is rated as 0-60 mph in 7.3 seconds, 0-100 mph in 22.6 seconds with an ungoverned top speed in the 113-115 mph range. It does the ¼ mile @ 88 mph in just 16.1 seconds. The engine Redlines @ 6,300 rpm. (S1 1962-1964), (S2 1964 -1966) & (S3 1966 -1968).

The launch of the Elan is one of the biggest projects ever for Lotus. The sales division wanted to upstage the Elan to broaden its appeal even further. They wanted to offer a fixed head coupé with creature comforts inside and highly styled lines outside to join the roadster. It was to be a cross between elegance and of course sport. Designer John Frayling was summoned for the project. The Elan Coupé version began in October 1963.

This new car was to include a fancy upscale elegantly styled interior, power window lifts, suspended headlining, and an excellent heating/ventilation system – in est – a luxury sport touring coupé. The Lotus Elan Coupé was unveiled at Earls Court in September of 1965. This is the first Lotus to benefit from careful market research. The Elan Coupé is a bona fide luxury sport car with poise as well as fierce Lotus performance.

The svelte Elan SE (Special Equipment) was introduced for some late S2 models and available for all S3 models forward. The Twin Weber 40DCOE carburetors produced 115 hp @ 6,000 rpm with 150 Nm of peak torque @ 4,500 rpm. The engine Redlines @ 6,750 rpm. The SE package included a higher lift “C” camshaft and a new cast iron exhaust manifold with a double down pipe. This version’s longitudinal acceleration is rated as 0-60 mph in 6.8 seconds, 0-100 mph in 21.8 seconds with an ungoverned top speed in the 120-123 mph range. It does the ¼ mile @ 89 mph in 15.5 seconds. This Special Edition also included servo-assisted brakes, special “Knock-Off” wheels, and SP tires. 

The Elan S4 came factory equipped with Twin Zenith-Stromberg 175CD carburetion. This unit used a different cylinder head and is not interchangeable with Weber or Dell ‘Orto carburetors. It produces 105 hp @ 5,500 rpm with 146 Nm of peak torque @ 4,000 rpm. Its longitudinal acceleration is rated as 0-60 mph in 7.5 seconds, 0-100 mph in 23.8 seconds with an ungoverned top speed of 114 mph. It can do the ¼ mile @ 86 mph in 15.8 seconds. (S4 1968-1971)

The Zenith-Stromberg units were documented with a few eccentricities. These units are prone to icing when ambient temps plummet to the freezing point. Air leakage thru the spindles will be indicated by overheating, pinking, and engine run-on. They also cause the engine to run around five degrees hotter than the Weber units. The Zenith-Stromberg units require maintenance intervals every 12 months. I have heard my cousin grumbling about the idiosyncratic behavior of his S4 with this carb. The Engine used a different cylinder head which is not interchangeable with the Weber nor the Dell’ Orto DHLA40. Some have experienced plug electrode failure with this unit which burns pistons. Lotus reverted back to the Weber units in October of 1970.

The S4 with the SE package produces 118 hp @ 6,000 rpm with 152 Nm of peak torque @ 4,600 rpm. Longitudinal acceleration is rated as 0-60 mph in 6.8 seconds, 0-100 mph in 21.1 seconds with an ungoverned top speed in the 122-125 mph range. It can do the ¼ mile @ 90 mph in 15.4 seconds.

Lotus Elan S4

1964 Elan 26R (competition version 97 built)

The Lotus Elan was homogulated in 1964 as the formidable 26R. Racing champions such as Jim Clark, Jackie Stewart, and Sir John Whitmore had successful competition wins in 1964. John Miles won 15 races and the Autosport Championship in 1966. They continued in competition for around 10 years. The lightweight design simplicity combined with its slippery aerodynamics makes it a viable contender in classic motorsport competitions today.

Elan Sprint (1970-1973)

The most impressive of all Elan models is the performance behemoth, Elan Sprint. Tony Rudd joined Lotus from BRM. He had been involved with Twin Cam development for the racing Lotus Cortinas and the Mike Spence Elan BRM project. His “Big Valve” modification combined the “D” camshaft with two fabricated tubular exhaust manifolds in place of the cast iron units. The mighty “Big-Valve” version of the 1558cc in-line 4-cylinder is the most powerful of this first generation series.

There are two factory fuel systems: Twin Weber 40DCOE units or Twin Dell’ Orto DHLA40 carburetors. The compression ratio increased from 9.5:1 to 10.3:1. The inlet valves were enlarged to 1.6” as well. The Elan Sprint’s power output is 126 hp @ 6,500 rpm with 153 Nm of peak torque @ 5,500 rpm. Longitudinal acceleration is rated as 0-60 mph in 6 seconds, 0-100 mph in 18.1 seconds with an ungoverned top speed in the 124 mph range. (With 5-speed gear box 0-60 mph in 6.8 seconds with a top speed in the ungoverned range of 130 mph)  It does the 1.4 mile @ 93 mph in just 14.8 seconds. The Elan Sprint embodies all that makes a Lotus…a Lotus!

The Elan Sprint has a hood with perfect fit

The Lotus Elan is beautiful coming or going

Technological élan…

First generation Elan models includes technology that out-shined the competition at the time. The Lotus Twin Cam engine is equipped with a 4-speed manual gear box. A  few later model year Elan Sprints were badged as “Sprint 5”  and are equipped with a 5-speed manual gear box. A unique 4-wheel independent back bone suspension is simple and highly effective. The front suspension is based upon the Triumph Herald with double wishbones of unequal length, coil springs, telescopic dampers, and anti-roll stabilizer bars. Chapman struts, triangulated lower wishbones, coil springs, and telescopic dampers make up the rear network. The Elan Sprint has a strengthening bridge over the differential. The driveshaft incorporates Rotoflex rubber doughnut U-joints which protects the differential by absorbing road shock.

To maintain optimum control under all driving situations, it incorporates a network as a true sports car without compromising speed or safety. The Elan has superb Alford and Adler rack & pinion steering. This type of system was standard on racing cars and sports cars for the day making it the first choice for Lotus. A modified Herald rack incorporates a lock stop to guard against high-speed rollovers while negotiating turns. The steering column also comes from the Herald.

Standard 4-wheel disc brakes brings the Elan to a safe, fade-free halt which is vital for a car of such torque-thrust. Girling discs are fitted all the way around with 9.5” fitted to the front axle and 10” fitted to the rear. Very few cars for the day had disc brakes installed on the rear axle. The rear calipers has a hand brake mechanical mechanism with a special pair of pads with one fitted to each side of the disc. Servo assistance is part of the SE and Sprint packages.

From The Avengers episode “Mission…Highly Improbable”

This very fast roadster began life very popular. When Diana Rigg, as the famous Mrs. Emma Peel character drove her Lotus Elan in “The Avengers” it raised interest even more so. There were magazine articles about it. The Elan 26R was winning competitions. Sales began soaring setting new sales records. Those who saw it for the first time wanted to know more about it. Americans were a bit restrained at first but by the time the S3 drop head was released, sales went beyond expectation and actually created shortages in the U.K.

From The Avengers episode “Epic”

Here’s Emma Peel’s first Lotus Elan featured in “Man-Eater of Surrey Green.” This episode is from the early B&W  segments introducing Diana Rigg as the indomitable Emma Peel who succeeded Mrs. Catherine Gale played by Honor Blackman. Notice the Elan’s lack of permanent window frames which makes it look a lot sleeker.

“Mrs. Peel, we’re needed…”

There are now tools available to properly remove and torque on your Elan wheels properly. If you have ever tried to remove an over-torqued spinner…you have learned exciting new ways to use expletives. A hammer, and a block of wood used to be the only way to remove an improperly torqued wheel. Check out this unique Knock-off spinner removal kit: http://knockoffspinnertool.com/lotus_elan_spinner_instructions if you value your Elan’s fibreglass bodywork and its beautiful wheels…

The #4 factory 300 yards from the main factory at Cheshunt Hertfordshire, 50 Lotus Elan bodies were produced and painted each week. After an essential period of curing in the open air, they are taken to the Elan shop where the backbone chassis is fitted with the gearbox and suspension. 

The body/chassis unit moved down the production line passing numbered work stations where separate operations were expedited under the careful scrutiny of the quality inspection staff. At the end of the production line all adjustments were checked and the car is started for the first time. After the final safety inspection, the Elan leaves for a 30 mile sprint on a road test by one of two inspectors who had tested over 1,600 Elans. On its return, the car is carefully checked again and then prepped for delivery to dealers.

Behind the Elan Shop is the Lotus Cortina Division, Spares, and service department with a “secret area” by Lotus Developments Limited. In another building Lotus Components Limited made 10 different types of racing cars from the Indianapolis 4.2 litre to the latest racing Elan. In a section no bigger than four lock-up garages, Team Lotus prepared their cars for the many races of the year.

The Lotus Elan is an exquisite hand-built, low volume sports car. Its one-piece fibreglass body shell fits over the backbone chassis attaching at 16 points. This type of construction makes the Elan exceptionally rigid with a lower center of gravity which is imperative to a high-speed sporting vehicle such as this. The other advantages to its torsional rigidity of the chassis and body construction are lack of rattles, harshness, and vibration – with low-cost production.

Today, the Lotus Elan is one of the most coveted classic sports cars. Its avant-garde glamour is timeless…it has challenged the years gracefully. It is one of a few cars that if in tip-top condition can take on the contemporary muscle cars without skipping a beat. Unlike most sports cars from this genre, the architecture is pure and unpretentious escaping status-quo. From the vacuum operated hide away headlamps to the stylish Lotus 3-eared knock-on spinner steel wheels, the Elan takes its place in automotive history.

Epilogue…

To drive the Elan is what true sports car performance is all about. This car was far ahead of its time. Its ferocious 1558cc Twin Cam in-line 4-cylinder engine with twin Weber or even twin Dell’ Orto carburetors, a close-ratio manual gearbox, and its sleek aerodynamic architecture enables it to achieve 105 to 130 mph without even working up a sweat. It will go down in automotive history as one of the world’s most significant sports car designs of all time. The Lotus Elan proves the point that a sports car doesn’t need humongous engine displacement or numerous cylinders to be a potent performer…

This is the 1960s genre and the Elan sported onto the automotive scene with a handcrafted fibreglass one-piece body shell with a rigid steel backbone chassis, independent 4-wheel suspension, 4-wheel disc brakes, and one of the world’s finest rack & pinion steering systems. To quote Graham Arnold former sales director for Lotus: “The Elan is a car for dreamers but when the owner wakes up…the pleasure remains – “ The first generation Lotus Elan saved the company from financial ruin getting the business out of the red and back to black which the contemporary Lotus models owe it a debt of eternal gratitude…the success of the Elan is a primary factor of Lotus’ commercial success to this day.

Special thanks to all of the Lotus Elan owners I talked to, Lotus historians, Graham Arnold’s book “Lotus Elan Super Profile” and Mark Hughes book “Classic and Sportscar – Lotus File”  for the specifications and general information to make this tribute to the formidable first generation Lotus Elan possible.

Welcome to Greg’s World…

Greg’s World IS NotoriousLuxury © 2017

Wendell’s Unique World of Papercraft

Posted in Editorials, Notoriously Outrageous with tags , , , , , , , , on February 28, 2017 by 99MilesPerHour

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I thought I’d switch gears and take a break from the ordinary and focus on the extraordinary. Let’s travel into the world of Wendell Koch. I remember the first time I traveled down his memory lane I had to stop and do a double-take – it looked so real it was surreal! It’s evident that his impetus is a labor of love. Welcome to Wendell’s World. It is a dream with an edge on reality. Who would ever have thought that pieces of paper could come to life in such a remarkable way – he refers to this unique hobby as “Papercraft!” No, the Mercury Grand Marquis above isn’t paper it’s one of Wendell’s favorite cars…this is his tribute. NotoriousLuxury salutes him  for an outstanding contribution to the world of Auto Art – 

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Compare the real Lincoln at the bottom to Wendell’s work above

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Papercraft “Vacation” Family Truckster Ford wagon 

His totally unique craft caught my eye a couple of years ago. These are so fantastic I had to share them with my audience. This is a change from anything you’ve ever seen. Wendell Koch is a good guy who has been dealt a bad hand in the card game of life. He has been a musician and a musical instrument instructor.

A debilitating disease he contracted as a child had been dormant for years now forced him into an early retirement. It attacked his respiratory system and left him with mobility issues because of muscle atrophy. But that didn’t rain on his parade! To interact with Wendell…one would never know the cross he bears because of his enthusiasm and spirit which is due in no small part to his positive mental attitude. I admire his indomitable stamina. He LOVES cars…so does his loving wife!

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Wendell is a lot like me with his love for cars. He too fell in love with cars at an early age. Throughout his early years he was surrounded by cars. (like I was) He said all of his toys were cars. Wendell’s parents supported his hobby avidly. He comes from a “car-loving” family. His dad and two brothers collected real antique cars. Wendell himself collected real cars from the 1930s thru the 1970s with great enthusiasm. Due to his illness he was forced to liquidate his beloved collection which forced him into a deep depression.

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This is one of my favorites! Check out the 1956 Nomad wagon, and 1955 Pontiac Safari wagon in the rear left hand side. The right hand foreground is a 1956 Ford wagon and behind it is a 1956 Plymouth wagon. These are really neat the way they resemble the real life vehicles they represent. Wendell’s work involves vehicles that never made it to plastic or die-cast models, which I think is great. It gives collectors the cars we really want to see replicated in miniature. Wendell has the staunch approval of his wife who supports his talent 100%. He says she is also his biggest critic!

Cars of Yesteryear: The complexity of creating older cars 

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According to Wendell, it’s the older cars which presents the biggest challenge to re-create. The curves of the hoods, fat fenders, and tail fins do not work well replicated on paper brought into 3-D. The pre 1961 vehicles are the hardest he says.

Per Wendell: “I did design and make some 1930’s, 1940’s and 1950’s cars. They required a lot more time and work. An example of this is my Father’s 1935 Ford wrecker (above) that he had used in his auto repair business. This truck had many separate parts to cut out and keep adding to the truck. There was never a photo taken of my Dad’s wrecker, I had to do it by memory and with the aid of a Ford truck book to help with accuracy. His 1940 repair shop is shown in the background.” Wendell is talented wouldn’t you agree?

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1935 Chevy Hay truck

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1932 Ford Coupe and 1957 Plymouth from the “California Kid”

This illness didn’t stop Wendell! He fine-tuned this art which has become his therapy to take his mind off of his infirmities. It’s interesting how it all began. His father made his first paper vehicle for him in the late 1950s. He took a piece of paper, hand etched the vehicle design – cut it out and taped it together. This tweaked Wendell’s curiosity as it would any kid. His dad’s love for cars rubbed off on him. Wendell experimented through the years on and off.  It was the mid-1990s when Wendell’s talent flourished. He designed and made two paper cars. One was a 1977 Mercury Grand Marquis fashioned after his own real car and the other was a 1977 Buick Electra fashioned after a friend’s car.

It took Wendell a few months to create the templates. He sketched every part of each car ensuring all details were accurate. The computer has since taken Wendell’s art to new heights in his Papercraft art. After experimentation, this man created the brilliant works displayed throughout this article. I tell you, I was incensed the moment I saw them on eBay where you may also purchase these unique works. I have purchased many, and from personal experience…I am amazed! They look just like the real cars. When you cut them out and tape them together they actually come to life. Display them with your 1/24 & 1/25 scale models and they really stand out! They add a realm of realism to your collection.

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1957 Plymouth from the “California Kid” and “Christine” right

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1955 Imperial limousine

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“Other vehicles that are similar to this in complexity were the 1956 Rolls Royce from the movie starring Dudley Moore “Arthur,”  and “The California Kid” with the 1934 Ford coupe along with the 1957 Plymouth police car. So are the blood-thirsty 1958 Plymouth Fury from Stephen King’s “Christine,” “The Addams Family’s” Packard, “Batman’s” Batmobile, and Col. Klink’s Mercedes from the TV sitcom “Hogan’s Heroes.” They all were fun to make but each one took quite a few months to complete. The Batmobile took the longest to make (4 months) and it required the most parts added on to it. The Gotham City police station is a printout and you will see the difference in quality as compared to background settings described later on in this article”

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Batmobile & Gotham City Police Car

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What a combination this is! On the left is Col. Klink’s Mercedes-Benz from Hogan’s Heroes” next to it is “The Addams Family” Packard and “Itts” Messerschmitt! (Of course you remember Itt!) This is absolutely amazing how Wendell brought pieces of paper to life in such a magical way. You really have to look closely to see that they are paper!

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A real custom Ford coupe

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“Back to the future”

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The Ford Anglia from Harry Potter

Wendell adds: “I have since stopped making any foreign vehicles and cars that require a complex build. The demand for one piece paper cut-out 1970’s American vehicles is all I can handle. All years of other American cars now are on permanent hold for the time being. The requests for 1970s American cars which come in every week, is astounding. These are easier for me to create using my established templates and I can get one finished in about a month.”

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Wendell LOVES the real Mercury Grand Marquis

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Background details: From town to auto dealerships

Per Wendell: “I started using a town background found on the internet to showcase the cars. The type of background was nice but got boring because I was using it for all my pics. I had to come up with something else. I then switched to dealerships with actual period correct advertisements. I created the car dealerships to help promote the look of the cars that are displayed for sale. The dealership backgrounds are for sale as well. They are the same size as my vehicles and will also compliment 1/24 & 1/25 scale model kits and promos.

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1975 Oldsmobile Custom Cruiser with town background

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1975 Pontiac Grandville convertible with top up

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1975-1978 Ford Country Squire station wagon 

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1976 Oldsmobile Delta 88 4-door hardtop sedan

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I am using real cars to contrast Wendell’s talent

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Papercraft 1975-1978 Mercury Colony Park wagon 

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1975 Pontiac Grandville convertible with top up

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Now this is really, really, interesting here. Look at the detail Wendell has added to these! They are the Papercraft 1972 Dodge Polara Highway Patrol cars! The cars at the back look like they are real don’t they? I had to look when I uploaded the photo to make sure they are paper! You GO Wendell!

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Papercraft 1975 Chevrolet Caprice 4-door sedan

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Now here are the auto dealership backgrounds. This is a Chrysler showroom with the Papercraft Chrysler New Yorker Fifth Avenue. If it weren’t for the cut-out at the bottom, it would be hard to tell if these are photos of a real Chrysler!

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Well if it isn’t “Uncle Buck” outside a Lincoln Mercury dealer!

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Papercraft 1977 Mercury Cougar Villager wagon

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Papercraft 1977 Lincoln Mark V Bill Blass Edition

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Papercraft 1979 Lincoln Continental Town Car sedan

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Wendell’s World includes a 1979 Continental limousine

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Ah, the real 1976 T-Bird…the Papercraft versions would be better than this! These cars were dubbed Ford’s luxury lemons for a reason. Maybe Wendell will give us a 1976 Thunderbird? (The paper version will most likely outlast the original)

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Here’s a GM showroom with the 1976 Olds 98 Regency 4-door

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1976 Oldsmobile 98 Regency coupe – don’t they look real?

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Wendell’s rendition of the Imperial is spot-on!

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Now for the trucks…this is the Papercraft 1971-1972 Fargo (Dodge) Tradesman Maxivan…are these real or what?

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Papercraft 1991 Chevrolet Suburban with 2-tone colors

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 Papercraft 1974 International Harvester Travelall Woody Wagon

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Wendell’s dealership backgrounds are very authentic

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Papercraft 1980 GMC Indy Hauler short bed

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Burt Reynolds from the movie “White Lightning”

“The T.V. and movie vehicle background scenery pictures were found on the internet. They are not print outs, I use my computer screen which makes a really clear picture. Sometimes a picture does not print out well and looks much better on the screen. I tried to recreate The California Kid downhill chase from the movie along with actual scenes from the movies. Rambo First Blood and the Burt Reynolds movie White Lightning. My computer screen also supplied the Hawaiian background to the original Hawaii Five-O T.V. show 1968 Mercury Parklane Brougham and the house background from the movie Christmas Vacation.”

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Steve McGarrett & his 1968 Mercury Parklane from the TV Series Hawaii 5-O. Look at the detail Wendell captured in the Mercury!

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The original 1970 Mercury Marquis Brougham

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Rambo First Blood

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“The California Kid” downhill chase…

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“Christmas Vacation” RV with Cousin Eddie!

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Wendell even captured the rust on Uncle Buck’s Mercury!

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Who couldn’t love the whimsical movie “Cars!”

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Check out Smoky & The Bandit

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Buford T. Justice Pontiac Lemans with Smokey & The Bandit 

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As you may clearly see, these paper vehicles take many man hours to complete. They all reflect Wendell Koch’s labor of love. It’s the astonishing detail that grabbed my attention. Look at how each contains intricate detail – and all made from paper!

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The Dukes of Hazzard! “EEEEEHA!”

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Wendell even captured Cooter’s Towing service

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Now it wouldn’t be complete without “The Rockford Files!”

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And lest we forget “The Junkman!”

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1976 Cadillac Sedan deVille

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1976 Cadillac Fleetwood Series Seventy-Five limousine

Talent is contributed to the world of art in many forms. It’s this diverse creativity that offers everyone something to tickle their fancy. Wendell Koch has a unique gift. Who would ever have thought a piece of paper could be brought to life in such a way? His unique talent requires a vivid imagination. Wendell puts a lot of himself into his works of art.

He says that it takes his mind off his health issues. I admire how this man thinks. He’s not sitting around feeling sorry for himself…no, it’s just the opposite. His passion for the automobile is evident. Wendell’s very own anime is a delightful change from the ordinary. NotoriousLuxury is dedicated to take the automotive enthusiast beyond the ordinary straight to the extraordinary. You gotta hand it to Wendell – this is unique! NotoriousLuxury salutes Wendell Koch and his exclusive Papercar Art.

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Here’s a Mercury Grand Marquis for you Wendell! It isn’t “paper” but it is a little something just for you! After all…you’ve given so much of yourself to the world of art – so enjoy! God Bless you Wendell Koch, the entire world loves ya!

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Welcome to Greg’s World of NotoriousLuxury © 2017

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Thank you Wendell Koch for your gift!

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1979 Lincoln Continental Collector’s Series

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The Mercury was nicknamed “The poor man’s Lincoln”