This car has been superseded by a newer model, click here to go to the latest Lotus Elise review.

Parkers overall rating: 4 out of 5 4.0

The light but rigid body structure makes the Elise the strongest sportscar of its time and measures up to modern crash standards, but there are no airbags or ABS; which may be of concern. The Elise comes with an immobiliser, but as it is difficult to stop someone from getting in, most will have additional after-market systems fitted, too. If yours does not, it may be advisable to fit one as it will add appeal to potential buyers and give your insurers greater peace of mind.

One particular problem with the Elise is the leaky, impractical roof. Not only does it take a while to assemble, but the design is also a little clumsy and slap-dash, allowing water to seep into the cabin in heavy downpours. Accessibility is also problematical, as getting in and out of the cabin is awkward and an art form in itself. One you are inside the Elise, space is meagre, but it is practical for moderate weekend use and short motorway journeys.

It is equally suited to B-roads, where the handling capabilities can be fully utilised on twisty bends and tight corners. Finally, storage space is also undersized and cannot accommodate much more than a couple of bags of shopping or a weekend-sized suitcase.

Basic equipment

The basic equipment list includes equipment that is standard across all versions of the Lotus Elise (96-00).

Equipment by trim level

To view equipment options for a specific trim level, please select from the following list:

Equipment included on some trim levels
  • Alarm
  • Alloy wheels
  • Cloth seat trim
  • Leather seat trim
  • Metallic Paint
  • Partial leather seat trim
  • Sports seats

Standard Trim equipment

Standard Trim standard equipment
Same as basic equipment
Standard Trim optional equipment
  • Alloy wheels
  • Cloth seat trim
  • Leather seat trim
  • Partial leather seat trim
  • Sports seats

111S equipment

111S standard equipment
  • Alloy wheels
  • Cloth seat trim
111S optional equipment
None available

Anniversary equipment

Anniversary standard equipment
Same as basic equipment
Anniversary optional equipment
  • Alloy wheels
  • Cloth seat trim
  • Leather seat trim
  • Partial leather seat trim
  • Sports seats

Sport 135 equipment

Sport 135 standard equipment
Same as basic equipment
Sport 135 optional equipment
  • Alloy wheels
  • Cloth seat trim
  • Leather seat trim
  • Partial leather seat trim
  • Sports seats

Sport 160 equipment

Sport 160 standard equipment
  • Alarm
  • Alloy wheels
  • Metallic Paint
Sport 160 optional equipment
  • Cloth seat trim
  • Leather seat trim
  • Partial leather seat trim
  • Sports seats