Tuesday, September 17, 2013

High Mileage Lotus - Benefits of 60pt Prep

Recently we serviced a repeat client who puts a ton of miles on his '05 Elise.  With 94,000 miles, this may be the highest mileage Elise in North America.  It is definitely the highest mileage car we have seen.  James first brought his Elise to us in Jan 2010 with 56,000 miles on the odometer.  At that time we conducted our 60pt Prep on the car.  This preparation checks over 60 of the critical areas, of a Lotus, that tend to loosen up.  Our service removes the fasteners, threadlocks them, torques them to spec and then paint markers each one.  You can find our 60pt Checklist on our Tech Tips page: HERE  Feel free to download this and use it to prep your car.

The picture below shows the old paint markers that we had put on James' car at the 56k service.  Even after 40k additional miles, you can still see them.  This technique allows you to visually inspect your car to quickly verify that your critical fasteners are still torqued correctly.  If you see that a paint line has shifted, this is a good indication that you need to retorque.

Once we inspected the car, we noticed that most of the fasteners had not moved.  We still removed each fasterner, reapplied threadlock, then cleaned off the old markers and repainted the joints.  These paint markers are readily available at auto parts or hobby stores.

One of the issues that we found during this inspection was the rear bushes had moved and the wishbones were making contact with the subframe.  The picture below shows what we found.  

Typically we see this on track cars but even high mileage street cars that are driven with some enthusiasm can exhibit this problem.  Luckily we have a couple of solutions that can help:  SL Bushes and the MONOballs or Nitron Bearings for the track/race focused cars.  We have a previous blog entry about this issue: HERE

We are big believers in the fact that these Toyota powered Lotus can be reliable cars.  The two basic requirements are that you:

  1. Keep the fluids & filters fresh
  2. Keep the critical fasteners torqued correctly
If you follow these basic rules you can run your Lotus for years with confidence and a grin on your face.

1 comment:

Wes said...

FYI....my 05 Elise is going to hit 120k soon. Only in 2012 did I stop driving it during my 90 mile round trip commute into Manhattan. Also got in some track days, as well.

Super reliable car!