1999 Lotus Esprit

Multiple records set at Mecum Indianapolis 2021
Friday, 14 May - Saturday, 22 May 2021
Sale Price
$50,000 - $60,000
Est. Range
22 May 2021
Sold Date
Lot Number
Unrestored original
Mecum Auctions
Auction House
Chassis no. SCCDC0824XHA15810, Gunmetal over black leather, 3506/350hp twin-turbo V-8, 5-speed, alloy wheels, Michelin tires, Brembo brakes, Alpine CD stereo, power windows, air conditioning.

Evaluation: Represented as one of just 97 Esprits brought to the U.S. for 1999, with 13,200 miles, and as having the same owner since 2002. Also represented with the original tires and window sticker, but no word on service history. A few small chips on the nose and bottom front lip. Small curb scrape on the right front wheel. Several long scratches on the left rear fender flare. Very lightly worn seats. A lightly used late Esprit with forgivable flaws.

Bottom Line: When the S4 Esprit gained Lotus’s all-aluminum twin-turbo flat-plane crank V-8 in 1996 it gave the British wedge a huge leap in performance, but US imports hovered at around just 100 cars per year from 1997-2002. Given that they’re the quickest, the most developed and the last Esprits, the V8 cars naturally command a big premium over the four-cylinder cars but even V8 Esprits generally command less money than other exotics of the period. They have been getting pricier over the past few years, however, and this is another strong result, one of the most expensive ones we’ve seen at auction.

by Andrew Newton
29 May 2021
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Condition definitions
Condition #1: Concours
Condition #1 vehicles are the best in the world. The visual image is of the best vehicle, in the right colors, driving onto the lawn at the finest concours. Perfectly clean, the vehicle has been groomed down to the tire treads. Painted and chromed surfaces are mirror-like. Dust and dirt are banned, and materials used are correct and superbly fitted. The one word description for #1 vehicles is “concours.“
Condition #2: Excellent
#2 vehicles could win a local or regional show. They can be former #1 vehicles that have been driven or have aged. Seasoned observers will have to look closely for flaws, but will be able to find some not seen by the general public. The paint, chrome, glass and finishes will all appear as excellent. No excessive smoke will be seen on startup, no unusual noises will emanate from the engine. The vehicle will drive as a new vehicle of its era would. The one word description for #2 vehicles is “excellent.“
Condition #3: Good
#3 vehicles could possess some, but not all of the issues of a #4 vehicle, but they will be balanced by other factors such as a fresh paint job or a new, correct interior where applicable. #3 vehicles drive and run well, but might have some incorrect parts. These vehicles are not used for daily transportation but are ready for a long tour without excuses, and the casual passerby will not find any visual flaws. “Good” is the one word description of a #3 vehicle.
Condition #4: Fair
#4 vehicles are daily drivers, with flaws visible to the naked eye. The chrome might have pitting or scratches, the windshield might be chipped. Paintwork is imperfect, and perhaps the body has a minor dent. Split seams or a cracked dash, where applicable, might be present. No major parts are missing, but the wheels could differ from the originals, or other non- stock additions might be present. A #4 vehicle can also be a deteriorated restoration. “Fair” is the one word that describes a #4 vehicle.
Condition #5: Poor
Running, but battered, incomplete, and perhaps rusty.
Condition #6: Parts car
Parts car.
Hagerty only assigns condition ratings to vehicles we can inspect in person or, for online listings, via high-quality photography.