Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Quicker Lotus Steering? Oh Yes!

A few years ago, I bought an Evo8 after experiencing its quick steering response. What an amazing feeling - even though the feedback was too light. When I got my Elise, I revelled in the feedback but was a bit disappointed in the speed of the steering vs. the Evo. To make matters worse, I bought an Atom last year with lightening quick steering. The Lotus steering felt a bit like a Caddy in comparison..well, maybe an M-car(flamesuit on!).

So when I learned a quicker ratio rack was available for our Lotus, I secured one for fitment. It turns out to be built by the same company that previously supplied Lotus. They re-engineered their previous kit with a quicker ratio. The lock to lock was reduced from 2.75 turns to 2.5. This may not seem like much but what a difference it makes!

We installed the rack a couple of weeks ago. The installation was a straight forward bolt-on solution but is also a bit of pain. Working in the footwell of our cars is no fun. Disconnecting the pinion is especially a pleasure! We learned a few things the hardway... ;^) Luckily we have a shop manual, limited brainpower AND good resources - like AutoEurope! We called over to our friends in DTW and received the tips we needed to get the job done.

Unbolting the rack.

Stock on the left.

Chris and I took it to Streets of Willow for the last LCS ( http://www.lotuschallengeseries.com/) event. What a blast! Our Exige turned in beautifully and the quickness was noticeable. I had other Lotus owners drive the car and the feedback was universally positive. BTW: if you've not checked out the LCS, it is really a good time. Please check out their website.

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