1956 Lotus Eleven Le Mans Series I

Courtesy of Bonhams

The present owner of this shining Lotus Eleven is no stranger to the type, having owned and raced another Eleven.

Keen to add to his Lotus collection, he found another Eleven in the U.K., though it had been badly crashed — when and by whom is unknown. This car’s long recovery to health began in the early 1980s and included a completely new body from Williams and Pritchard. While most of the damaged panels were discarded, the owner retained the original doors and center section. Completed over the past three years, the restoration used a host of original parts, including the suspension, gas tank, differential, throttle assembly, instruments and carburetors.

Although this Eleven has lost its original chassis plate, and its provenance is unknown before the accident, Lotus experts have deemed this spectacular car as authentic. It has not been campaigned since the restoration, so a complete review of its structure and mechanicals is recommended before this treasure is returned to the track, where it belongs.

Thor Thorson

Thor Thorson - SCM Contributing Editor - %%page%%

Thor grew up in northern Iowa. His father bought a red Jag XK 150 in the late 1950s, and that was all it took; he has been in love with sports cars , racing cars and the associated adrenaline rush ever since. He has vintage raced for more than 20 years, the bulk of them spent behind the wheel of a blue Elva 7. When he’s not racing, he is president of Vintage Racing Motors Inc., a collector-car dealer and vintage-racing support company based in Redmond, WA. His knowledge runs the full spectrum of vintage racing, and he has put that expertise to good use for SCM since 2003.

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