Esprit X180 ( NA Turbo & SE ) 1987 to 1992
Lotus Esprit X180 ( NA Turbo & SE ) 1987 to 1992
Lotus's halo supercar model went through some important changes in this period, and a mildly confusing range of versions! Whilst the platform remained the same as the previous Turbo HC model, the body had a complete facelift. The 70s sharp-edged wedge was rounded-off and brought up-to-date, without changes to the chassis, wheelbase or track - which was something of a miracle really. Lotus also moved to a more modern Renault gearbox and outboard rear brakes. There were N/A and Turbo versions of this 'X180' model, differentiated externally by nose and rear-window features, and different wheels. There were some variations in engine specification by market (this became more pronounced in later models). The SE model of 1989 brought a chargecooler, more power, and 911 beating performance. The N/A cars became less and less popular, and this version was quietly discontinued after 1990.
Although the N/A and Turbo cars had different wheels at launch, they used the same size tyres; 195/60VR15 front, and 235/60VR15 rear. Availability of these sizes has been a problem for some time. Lotus have, in the past, confirmed that 225/60VR15 can be fitted as a rear alternative. As a result, there is a set of Vredestein tyres available in 195 front, and 225 rear. Please contact us to confirm current availability. From 1990 the SE fitment became standard across the range, so if your car has 15-inch front, and 16-inch rear wheels please see the SE entry.
The SE model was built on the 'Eagle' chassis, a reference to the Goodyear tyres its staggered wheel sizes were designed for. The front wheels were 15-inch diameter, while the rears were 16-inch. The standard fitment tyres were 215/50ZR15 front, and 245/50ZR16 rear. This fitment later became standard accross the Esprit range.