Lotus Eleven #36 – Spark

1956 Lotus Eleven 
Pilots: R.Bicknell, P. Jopp
Team: Lotus Engineering
Race: 7th GC (1st S 1.1 class) at Le Mans in 1956
Spark - S2188 (resin)

Published 08/21/17

Produced from 1956 to 1958, the Eleven came from the pen of Colin Chapman himself. And Frank Costin created a very aerodynamic body, that guaranteed a very low drag . You could buy it in three distinct specifications, ranging from the basic “Sports” model to the top-of-the-line “Le Mans”. It became a quite popular car among privateers, with a total of 270 units built. The car’s chassis, derived from the Lotus Mark 9, was a tubular space frame that was covered by an aluminum body. The engine usually was a 1.1 or 1.5 l by Coventry Climax, but privateers used different power plants. The car was absurdly light – fully loaded, it weighed only about 450 kg (1000 lb)!

Though to my eyes it doesn’t look so, the car was really petite.

At La Sarthe in 1956, for their three cars, the works team used the Coventry-Climax FWA engine. It was a 1098 cm³ SOHC inline-4 that produced a feeble 83 hp of power. However, on an ultra lightweight car, those puny 83 horses were enough to make Eleven #36 (chassis #210) finish in 7th place overall. And, as a bonus, 1st place in the S 1.1 class. Another oddball for my collection, and this time a pretty ugly one. Honestly, I think this is one of the ugliest Lotus that I’ve seen, so ugly that it’s cool. And in 1:43 it came out great, and one more win for Spark. Although this looks like something I would expect from Bizarre.

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