across the country trip in the Elan

Our Elans were built to be driven and not all of us want to to use them on Track Days. If you use, or plan to use, your Elan as a Grand Tourer and have completed or are planning some great trips then inspire the rest of us with the details.

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across the country trip in the Elan

Postby tedtaylor » Tue 15.07.2014, 03:08

No one posted anything since my previous posting of a winter trip in my M100 (see Winter Weekend With Wife's Wotus) so I can't help myself doing it once again. Although this forum topic of "Touring" might be reserved for official "organized" touring, i'm taking a shot at my amateur attempt at a personal vacation as a substitution for one.
We packed something into every square available inch of the car. I left my home state of New Jersey just outside Philadelphia and headed west. We stopped at Cleveland to visit the "Christmas Story" house, then headed west around Toledo and northward up the lower peninsula of Michigan. We took the Eastern shore along Lake Huron stopping along the way for sightseeing anywhere and everywhere. No particular itinerary and just "winging it" along the way. Some nice motels, and some not-so-nice motels. It becomes hit or miss if you don't plan ahead, but what the heck!
Pictured is the M100 parked with the Mackinaw Bridge in the background. We head up to the upper peninsula today and want to reach Lake Superior. The car is running flawlessly. The A/C worked very well for a nice trip out, but with top down driving now that we're further north in cooler temps. Hope we continue to have good luck and put on more enjoyable miles on the Elan (and get home safely too)!
Happy motoring!
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TED
"Driving a Lotus is a triumph of bravery over intelligence." Stirling Moss

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Re: across the country trip in the Elan

Postby DeanG » Wed 16.07.2014, 20:40

Excellent way to travel. Cleveland has a strong Lotus club and a lot going for it (I was there for surgery earlier this year).

The M100 can swallow a huge amount of luggage. I know that I couldn't carry all of it at one time!

Consider taking the coal fired ferry between Michigan and Wisconsin.

Keep track of the number of states visited in the M100. We are at 47.
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Re: across the country trip in the Elan

Postby tedtaylor » Thu 17.07.2014, 14:21

we heard about that ferry and it sounded interesting, but my wife gets a little sea sick, so we passed on it. sounded like a real piece of history to experience too.
47 states??? then you must have racked up a lot of miles on her. I'll never do that many, but this week we have done 7 of them. I feel real guilty when the odometer just turned over 41K miles. I bought this car 2 years ago with only in the low 30K's miles, but i really do love driving it, so naturally, the odometer keeps clicking away. it's the age old tug of war..... don't drive your car and retain its youth and beauty, or drive the car, enjoy, and risk the stone chips and wear and tear of use??? A little of both for me. :)
I just can't get over how comfortable we are. Plenty of room in the trunk for luggage (and stuff strewn around the cabin too). Having working A/C is a real plus. to be able to roll up the windows on highway traffic to keep out the road/truck noise, all the while staying cool and comfortable. Also, when appropriate, putting the top down and enjoying the top-off experience too. with top down and windows up, cruising 70+ MPH is still very comfortable.
I would never have been able to do this trip with the wife and luggage in our Elise or previously owned Europa!
Well, outside of Chicago area and heading back toward the east coast. I think a stop at the Indy 500 Speedway is in order today.
Happy motoring!
TED
"Driving a Lotus is a triumph of bravery over intelligence." Stirling Moss

'73 Elan Sprint DHC
'74 Europa JPS#059
'91 Elan M100
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Re: across the country trip in the Elan

Postby tedtaylor » Sun 20.07.2014, 03:32

Well a final tally of total miles on this vacation trip was just under 3000 !!! The last day was spent at the Indy 500 museum where several Lotus race cars are displayed. We drove through 8 states (NJ, PA, OH, MI, WI, IL, IA, IN) all in seven days! I don't think we could have done this in any other Lotus car. Only the M100 has trunk space for two travelers, the comfort of air conditioning, the ability to drop the convertible top down, be comfortable getting in and out easily, use less than 1 pint of oil, and get about 31 MPG. What a great trip! The car ran perfectly without a hitch. Of course, the front bumper is covered in bugs and the car needs a complete cleaning and detailing, but it was worth it.
TED
"Driving a Lotus is a triumph of bravery over intelligence." Stirling Moss

'73 Elan Sprint DHC
'74 Europa JPS#059
'91 Elan M100
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Re: across the country trip in the Elan

Postby DeanG » Sat 26.07.2014, 02:17

Sounds like an excellent trip. How about posting a few pictures?
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Re: across the country trip in the Elan

Postby tedtaylor » Wed 30.07.2014, 17:58

lincoln hwy.JPG

Lincoln Highway in the "hub" city in Illinois somewhere mid-state.
TED
"Driving a Lotus is a triumph of bravery over intelligence." Stirling Moss

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'74 Europa JPS#059
'91 Elan M100
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Re: across the country trip in the Elan

Postby tedtaylor » Wed 30.07.2014, 18:00

mississippi river.JPG

Driving up and over a levee in Iowa and low and behold, the over flowing Mississippi River we almost drove into!!!
Last edited by tedtaylor on Thu 31.07.2014, 03:08, edited 1 time in total.
TED
"Driving a Lotus is a triumph of bravery over intelligence." Stirling Moss

'73 Elan Sprint DHC
'74 Europa JPS#059
'91 Elan M100
TaylorMadeClassicCars on WWW and Facebook
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Re: across the country trip in the Elan

Postby tedtaylor » Wed 30.07.2014, 18:04

route41.JPG

Tip of Upper Peninsula of Michigan where US Route 41 begins. Now to drive down to bottom in Florida??
TED
"Driving a Lotus is a triumph of bravery over intelligence." Stirling Moss

'73 Elan Sprint DHC
'74 Europa JPS#059
'91 Elan M100
TaylorMadeClassicCars on WWW and Facebook
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Re: across the country trip in the Elan

Postby tedtaylor » Wed 30.07.2014, 18:07

indy500.JPG

Very appropriate for a Lotus to visit the Indy 500 Speedway museum where other Lotus race cars are displayed.
TED
"Driving a Lotus is a triumph of bravery over intelligence." Stirling Moss

'73 Elan Sprint DHC
'74 Europa JPS#059
'91 Elan M100
TaylorMadeClassicCars on WWW and Facebook
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Re: across the country trip in the Elan

Postby EM One Hundred » Wed 30.07.2014, 19:00

Great story Ted! I am one who believes these are among the best touring Lotus cars and should be used that way. I am glad you do too. I have been on at least five trips of over 1,000 miles in mine, (One of which I am posting a story about as a separate item) and I applaud you for getting out of state in yours. Well done! :clap: :clap:

Now if we could just catch up to the Emperor of the Road, Mr. Dean Giacopassi! :m100: :bowdown:

In an attempt to do that, my wife and I will be attending LOG 34 in Asheville, NC this fall in our M100. See you all there.
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Re: across the country trip in the Elan

Postby DeanG » Sat 02.08.2014, 01:33

I just wish I could do trips like Bill B. Long distance touring in a series 2 Seven!
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