Sunday, February 24, 2013

Lotus Europa

When I started this blog I wrote that I may sometimes write about things other than boats. Today is one of those times.

I have been rebuilding a 1970 Lotus Europa since 2010. It was in a very sad state, requiring the body to be removed so that I could renovate the chassis, rebuild the suspension and replace all of the brake lines. In the process I also replaced the motor because the original was very badly seized. On the body I have replaced the firewall, as well as all steelwork that had rusted away in the previous 20 years.

That work is now all done. Today was the day to reunite the body and chassis. This car is so tiny that body and chassis could fit one-behind-the-other diagonally across our double garage.

Body and chassis waiting to be reunited.
Friends came to help with this job. The body is fibreglass, so it is very light. It took 4 guys lifting and two people guiding to get the job done in less than 5 minutes.

The job done, looking more like a car again.
Still much work to do before I will be driving, including new dashboard, windscreen and reconnecting all of the wiring. Only when it is back on the road will I get around to repainting. I have posted a video of fitting the body to the chassis on my YouTube channel .

I promise I will get back to boating in my next post.


  1. Very cool, Dudley. While studying aerospace engineering in college I found a Europa in sad shape for almost no money and was sorely tempted to buy it. But I had no garage nor tools nor practical knowledge so I regretfully passed. Blessings on your project!
    (But don't take so much time that you can't work on designing a 39 ft proletarian version of Wild Vanilla . . .)

    Mitch Hay

  2. Thanks Mitch. A reasonable garage is a definite requirement for a rebuild like this. Tools one can source as needed. Practical knowledge grows as the project progresses. I had never even stood next to one of these cars before this one came my way.

    I do need to get this project finished so that I can get back to boatbuilding. It doesn't get in the way of my designing though, that aspect of my life continues to be very full.