Other than the first Porsche 911, the Lotus Esprit is the only sports car that, in my opinion, truly deserves the moniker "evergreen sports car."
Esprit was manufactured for an amazing 28 years, from 1976 to 2004. It also did show its age because ongoing development kept it modern and competitive.
After experimenting with semi technologies with Europe, Colin Chapman was inspired to adopt a more daring strategy.
He came up with a stunning design that combined a wedge profile in the Countach style with clean lines and ideal proportion. It had a supercar-like appearance.
Lotus originally intended to provide two engines, a base straight-four and a top-tier V8. However, the V8 never materialized for financial reasons (until 20 years later)
The 1973cc engine, which Lotus itself designed and constructed, was genuinely cutting edge. It produced about 160 horsepower and had an all-alloy structure, dual cams, and four valves per cylinder.
The Lotus weighed less than one ton, to start. The car's modest engine, glass-fiber body shell, and signature backbone chassis from Colin Chapman allowed it outweigh competitors by 200–300 kg.
With such a 0-60 mph time between 7.5 and the low 8-second range, it still fell short of its more potent competitors, therefore a cheaper price tag was needed as a backup plan.
The initial Esprit cost £8,000, which was between £2,000 and £5,000 less than just its competitors. This explained the decline in performance.
It had a low, wide-built chassis. Its compact engine was longitudinally positioned ahead of the 5-speed transmission and behind the cockpit (which came from Citroen SM).
Along with the rear suspensions, which were made out of mid arm and lower transverse links, it was placed on a tube rear subframe. Double wishbones up front offered the best possible wheel control.
Esprit wasn't very effective as a daily transportation option. Its lowness suggested a very small cabin, and the floor-mounted chairs were challenging to sit in. Outside, its fast-angle windscreen can appear outstanding.