Launched in 1966, the Lotus Europa was the first mass produced, mid-engine road car that was based on a prototype built to compete for a Ford contract to build a Le Mans race car in the early 1960s. Only 9882 Europa’s were totally produced between 1966 and 1975, Twin Cams accounting for 4950 of this number. Although DVLA records show that only 474 Twin Cams are still registered in the UK as of today, survivors are increasingly sought after.
This lovely Twin Cam is a left-hand drive car that was originally imported from California to the Netherlands and was brought back to its British roots by the current owner in 2014. The car has been entirely reconditioned and still retains its original Pistachio Green paintwork. This historic vehicle is an exceptionally correct and well-preserved example of an increasingly desirable classic sportscar.
Lotus has a history as the most innovative of all the small British car builders, with a slew of innovations and “outside the box” thinking going back to the 1950s. This was a car of its time, designed for Europe, hence named accordingly. The name Europa works in various ways – it starts with E, as all Lotus names did and still do. Like any Lotus from the 7 to the current Elise, Exige and Evora, the Europa was a real driver’s car, with a focus on handling and roadholding that enabled the driver to benefit from the low weight and consequent power to weight ratio.
This Lotus Europa Twin Cam was produced from 1971 to 1972 and is a facelift of the 1968 Lotus Europa S2. This particular Pistachio Green Europa (BVM37IK) was imported from Netherlands, by the current owner who is an engineer and a sports classic enthusiast, who’s had a childhood attachment towards this particular car model. The chassis of the car was completely replaced, and the engine reconditioned by the previous owner, making it very strong and fast. Unfortunately, due to lack of use, the owner has decided to sell the car to a keen buyer.
The car was originally purchased from a dealer called Stolze Classic Cars in Netherlands. The owner possesses all the documents since purchase including the V5C document issued by the DVLA to confirm proof of ownership, specifications, addresses and history. The car is currently tax and MOT exempt.
The owner has also made several spare part purchases for the car, and all bills are with the file. Other paperwork includes the HMRC Import receipt, Receipt of purchase, MOT Test certificates and the Lotus workshop manual.
The interior of the Europa has seating for two, with excellent visibility for both the driver and passenger. The cabin features lovely upholstery, with a stunning custom carbon fibre dashboard and new Lotus black carpets. The seats are in good condition that have been retrimmed to the original material.
The current owner has also purchased a new head cloth (lining) from Europa Engineering (see receipt), which is not yet fitted. There is a small leak (when raining) to windscreen seal on driver's side.
A new top-end Momo Prototype black steering wheel rests in front of an instrument panel housing Jaeger gauges, which includes a 130mph speedometer along with oil pressure, amperage, and fuel level gauges. The current owner has requested to note that the speedometer doesn’t work very well and needs a Nylon worm gear fixed.
The exterior is one of the reasons this car is so special – nothing else looks quite like it.
The Pistachio lime green paintwork is well chosen for a car of this era, and as expected for a historic car, there is a bit of crazing on the body paint. The car has 2 doors and has had brand new head and tail lights installed.
What stands out most about this vehicle is its unusual shape, making it even more striking, enchanting and a unique piece of motoring history. A special feature of this particular car is that it has been installed with new Brabham replica split rim alloy wheels which are quite expensive.
This historic car is arguably the most desirable sports vehicle back in the 70s. It is a rear wheel drive car that has a 4-cylinder 1558 cc engine - a rear mid-engine sports coupé.
With 105 BHP, the naturally aspirated 1.6 Litre 8v Inline petrol engine accelerates this Europa Twin Cam to 62 mph in 7.9 seconds and on to a maximum speed of 117 mph. It has a kerb weight of 711 kg and comes with a 4-speed manual gearbox. Additionally, luggage space in this vehicle is about 212 litres.
According to the current owner, the car is complete, and the engine runs well without any leaks or problems. It has got an electronic ignition and the following parts have been replaced to make this classic sports vehicle into almost as new as you can get; new brake discs, calipers, brake lights, start motor, clutch, Lotus Esprit radiator. Gearbox has been reconditioned.
The Lotus Europa has always been something of an acquired taste, however, has been a relatively rare sight in the UK. Driving a Lotus Europa is quite an experience as period advertising admitted: "The Lotus inflames passions. Some love it, some hate it."
Whichever Europa you drive, you’re assured of getting plenty of attention, and loads of rear-wheel drive fun, while the overall lightness of the car makes for a true Lotus experience. The Lotus Europa Twin Cam represents a rare opportunity to acquire a piece of motoring history for the vintage sports enthusiast.
Owners quote: “Best handling car ever owned.”
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