Lotus closed the 20th century with a special edition Lotus Elise 49 that commemorates Lotus’ Grand Prix glory and racing history. It is painted in the same red, gold and white colour scheme as the Lotus Type 49 Formula One car (along with several other Lotus F1, F2, F3 and sports racers). Just 92 standard 118 hp Elise Type 49 were produced and 43 of the 111S 143hp based Type 49 totals 43 cars covering both LHD & RHD. Unveiled at the 1999 London Motorshow at Earls Court and with a fraction of the total 135 cars made surviving, this ‘Gold Leaf’ special edition is a collectors dream.
The Lotus Elise 49 comes with composite body panels with detachable front and rear clamshells, extruded anodised aluminium epoxy-bonded spaceframe chassis, integral roll over hoop, STACK electronic speedo and tacho with multifunction LCD, 12v socket, interior lamp switch, tell-tale warning lamps, odometer, trip recorder, instrument brightness control, pump lumbar support. The color scheme matched the Type 49 Specification; Special red, white and gold colour scheme. As a Type 49 ‘Gold Leaf’ special edition.
The Type 49 was powered by the standard the four cylinder in-line 16-valve engine with aluminium engine block and cylinder head that displaces 1796cc to produce 118 hp at 5,500 rpm and 165 Nm torque at 3,000rpm.