If you’re big on Lotus collector cars, here’s one you won’t want to pass up: a 2002 Lotus Esprit V8, rebuilt at the factory in 2010 for then-CEO Dany Bahar.
First spotted by Piston Heads, the car is currently listed for sale by U.K. dealership Fairmont Sports and Classics. A price tag isn’t mentioned.
Bahar, who helped Red Bull enter Formula 1 and NASCAR, and also shortly served as a senior executive at Ferrari, joined Lotus as CEO in 2009. The following year he made his famous string of five concept car debuts at the Paris auto show, among which was a modern Esprit. None of them made it to production, due to financial struggles Lotus was undergoing at the time.
It’s not clear when Lotus took back the keys, but we’re guessing it was around 2012, which was when Bahar was let go and his rebuilt Esprit first sold to the public. It has had two owners since then, according to the listing.
2002 Lotus Esprit V8 once owned by Dany Bahar – Photo credit: Fairmont Sports and Classics
The car’s engine and transmission were both completely rebuilt in 2010. The engine is a twin-turbocharged 3.5-liter V-8 rated at close to 350 hp, and paired to a manual transmission. The body was repainted in its original pearl white color, while the interior was done over in leather and Alcantara.
The choice bits from the 2003 Final Edition Esprits also made their way onto Bahar’s Lotus, including OZ wheels, AP Racing four-piston front brake calipers and Brembo rears, an oversized rear wing, unique taillights, and an exhaust that exits through the center of the rear fascia. Bilstein dampers and an ECU recalibration were also part of the upgrades.
The odometer currently reads about 42,000 miles, with only 7,000 miles added since the rebuild. It’s rumored the cost of the rebuild was in the vicinity of 100,000 British pounds, worth approximately $126,500 at today’s exchange rate.
Bahar is still active in the auto industry. Today he runs Ares, an Italian car customizer and coachbuilder.