A fairly ratty 1983 Lotus Legend on ebay via Anaheim, CA. Buy It Now for $349 plus $119.99 to ship or Make an Offer. The seller, feel-the-deal, must be a pawn or resale shop, as there is more fine print warranty/return policy info than there is actual info on the bike. The listing does say “In GOOD condition, Works great. Item shows normal wear with some scuffs and scratches. Comes as seen in pictures, so don’t miss out on this great deal.” An informed bike fanatic would say this bike is in poor/ugly condition. The drilled Sugino Super Mighty Comp cranks is there, along with the Suntour Cyclone II derailleurs, and Dia Compe Gran Compe Aero brakes and levers. There are some good things happening here and perhaps a thorough degreasing would help, but not for the asking price. That’s just my opinion. 

I was going through some very old posts yesterday and was surprised to see how uninformed I was about Lotus bikes a few years ago. I would never purport any expertise on the subject, it’s just that I have obsessive opinions on all things Lotus. I believe my knowledge and identification skills have improved, though mistakes are certain to pop up-see my recent Oxide Green Competition post.

Given my limitations, it’s great that there are two, totally different sites dedicated to Lotus bicycles. Tim at Vintage Lotus Bicycles has a very organized catalog of Lotus information. My site, is a little more eccentric (erratic) and shows all facets of customized, restored, and generally used Lotus bikes, with a close watch on the marketplace. Both are useful in their own way. 

Additionally, I’m a little disappointed with the search feature in my new tumblr theme. I wish there were a search panel on the home page, but instead you must click on tags in a given post. It’s not an impossible task but not as easy as I would prefer it to be. While trolling old posts, I also noticed that some 2011 images won’t load. It’s frustrating and probably requires a note to someone at tumblr. 

That’s my moment of reflection.

This post comes after the sale, but I believe this bike is totally worth mentioning. I’ve not seen one like this before, so let me analyze. 

Tim’s Odyssey page only goes to 1987, but this Odyssey is not exactly like the ‘87 model, and based on the setup, I believe it must be an ‘88. It’s definitely got the features of very late model Lotus: the Lotus Design USA decal at the bottom of the seat tube; three color ‘Odyssey’ decal at the back of the crossbar; strange mountain/tree decal at the front of the crossbar; and odd components like the Sakae Oval Tech crank and Shimano Light Action derailleurs. You can really see Lotus struggling to build a decent bike while battling the Yen/USD exchange rate. Interestingly, the the frame still carries a Made In Japan sticker. I suppose this model was too high within the model range to be sent to Taiwan for construction. Who knows. 

Even though I have been scrutinizing the pics, I kept seeing the bike as navy blue. The listing says gunmetal grey and now I can see the color distinction. 

After 54 bids, the bike sold for $377.00 plus $89.00 to ship. Honestly, I’m very surprised by the price and the bidding activity. I would not have estimated it that high nor expected so much interest. Judging the pics, it’s obviously used and could use a thorough degreasing. Minus the tires and bartape, everything is original, including the Lotus branded toe straps.

It’s good to be pleasantly surprised sometimes.

This ‘83 Oxide Green Competition is simultaneously on ebay and Omaha, Nebraska’s craigslist. Fortunately, the seller has the same price ($450) on both listings. As described, the bike has scuffs and chips to the paint, and the ‘Competition’ decal is nearly obliterated. Numerous changes, such as the stem, bars, brake levers, wheels, saddle. The drivetrain retains all Suntour Superbe components, though those have seen heavy wear. The crank teeth appear heavily chewed. Topped off with $150 shipping, this bike becomes quite expensive if you consider the aforementioned details. Everyone must make their own decision though.

Update: maybe it was being out of town for a week or so, but I totally overlooked the relisting of this Competition. I first posted this bike on May 27, 2014 when it was originally listed on ebay. At that point, it was being auctioned with a starting bid of $1, but the seller had a high minimum bid set, probably somewhere near the old $495 asking price, and it did not sell. So here we are two months later.

Saw a guy riding a white Lotus Eclair (second gen ‘83-‘84) on the lakefront trail in Chicago this AM. Shouted and screamed that I loved his bike and wanted him to send me a pic, but I think that freaked him out a little. He did not turn around to hear me out. 

A handsome ‘83 Lotus Odyssey on Dayton, Ohio’s craigslist. I have not seen one of these in some time, so yes, it’s not a common Lotus. Lovely Pearl Orange paint, and although this one has received some modifications, it does come with the original bars/stem so that it can easily be restored. Though I’m not sure the brake levers are included. Seller is asking $350, but considering the condition, I would say it’s not totally out of proportion. Keep ‘em coming Ohio!

Hello, I noticed On the record, you mentioned the bike was too big. My question is how do you know the size based on picture. also What size is that Lotus Record?

Asked by pentree64

I suppose I should have been more clear-the bike is too big for me, it may be perfect for someone else. I know a 56cm frame is perfect for me. The Record in Tennessee is a 58-60cm. I judge frame sizes by looking at the space between the crossbar and the downtube-the smaller the space the smaller the frame; the larger the space, the larger the frame. I could ride that Record, but the crossbar would chafe my crotch when I stood over it. Since the bike is 600 miles away, I was not willing to take a chance on a larger frame. Also, my specified frame size keeps me from buying too many used bikes.

Hey! Another Chicago find: fourth generation Lotus Eclair. I must be looking at every bike I see, because I spotted this one without much effort. A very subtle Lotus in navy paint and Suntour Alpha components. The head badge caught my eye, but I’ve seen another Lotus at the same corner, so maybe that’s what I was looking for. Who knows… I really should stop looking at other bikes while I’m biking-it’s not safe. AND… I was not riding a Lotus at the time. Yes, I ride bikes that are not Lotus; a Schwinn and a Trek to be specific. The Trek is a Multitrack and is good for bumpy routes. The Schwinn is only good for short trips, but is old, classic, and is fun to ride because of it’s coaster brake. I saw this Eclair after running a bumpy route errand, but felt guilty when I stopped to photograph. What if the owner of this bike had caught me snooping his/her ride? "I manage a blog about about Lotus bicycles BUT I’m riding a Trek right now…" Totally lame!

Final post of the day: batch dropped mixtes. The red Lotus is a America in Santa Fe, NM; the silver Louts is a Grand Prix in New Jersey. It’s not clear to me if the upright bars and city levers are something Lotus specified. I’ve seen quite a few mixte bikes with this setup, but I’m inclined to think it was a dealer modification at the point of purchase. I see lollipop reflectors and a Kashimax saddle, so I’m inclined to believe this is hardly used as the seller describes. Asking $150.

The Special has a fat saddle and is a little dusty, but looks to be in decent, mostly original condition. Noodle bars, not uprights. Seller describes the bike as smoooooth and is asking $120. 

A horribly photographed ‘84 Classique in St. Louis, MO. Most notably is the price: $100. Considering this bike appears to be in decent shape and 98% of the components are there (missing toe clips?), this is a great price. I’ve always liked the extra chrome on the fastback paired with the Electric Blue paint. Suntour ARX drivetrain, DiaCompe 500GX brakes, and Ukai 700C anodized rims. Bring it on! I don’t see many Lotus in St. Louis-unlike Columbus, Ohio-so this bike is a rare one in this area at an unusually great price. 

A 1980 Classique on Fort Wayne, IN’s craigslist. For some reason, the seller has it listed as a Venture Lotus bike-it’s uncertain where that comes from. The ad says Light blue racing bike no rust with original book specifications mint condition”. The upright bars and city brake levers are far from the original specifications, as is the saddle. From a distance, the rest of the bike looks good. Similar to the Legend in the previous post, the Classique is outfitted with Shimano 600EX. The drivetrain looks intact, the wheels too. Missing some toe clips but you may consider the handlebar bag a bonus. Not for $450 though. Consider your options: a mint Unique in DC, a handsome black Legend in NYC, or a Classique in Indiana that’s in decent condition but modified, all for $450. I suppose geography comes into play.

Actually, there are a bunch of first generation/early model Lotus on craigslist at the moment. I recognize the Prospect Park backdrop of this Brooklyn, NY Lotus Legend. This looks like an 1981-82 model because (I think) the water bottle is brazed-on, not clamped to the frame. It’s missing the chainguard on the Shimano 600EX crank and the rear derailleur is a replacement, but the rest looks stock. The Kashimax saddle shows much use but whatever. The seller mentions much love for Lotus bikes by linking to my site and Tim’s at Vintage Lotus Bicycles. Nice! The seller also suggest converting it to a single speed or fixed. Don’t do it please. Premium NYC price: $450.

As of posting, this well documented, all original Unique is still on Washington, DC’s craigslist. It’s truly a stunning example. There are signs of use, such as torn decals and some minor scuffing, but the IRC tires, cotton bar tape, and Kashimax saddle are in place. I even like the Campagnolo water bottle. Not Lotus branded, but as the receipt indicates, it’s been on the bike since 1983. Love the juicy red paint. Seller is asking $450. It’s expensive, but if you are obsessed with originality, you can’t say no to this bike.

Submission: Early model Unique with ALL original parts. 

Thank you for sending along this image of your Unique From what I can see, it looks amazing! Juicy red paint. Unfortunately, the system tumblr has set up for photo submissions does not allow for numerous images to be sent and you (sivartrednaxela) do not have a message/contact feature on your tumblr page. Let’s exchange emails-I’d like to see and hear more about your Lotus. 

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