Awhile back began thinking the Lotus Esprit Twin Turbo V8 is maybe the closest production model Lotus has made that sort of is configured like the 49. The Esprit weighs 2,866 pounds and depending on tune may have well over its stock 350hp. The original pre-production racing engine that was said to be around 500hp was only de-tuned for production.
Zero to 100 in less than 10 seconds. To 60mph in 4.3. Top speed well beyond prudence. Not bad for a 1996 supercar.
Road & Track certified it being one of the best handling cars money could buy, matching it up against other world class g-force contenders: the Viper, 911 AWD, Ferrari, an NSX, and a C5 Corvette, (all much newer cars).
That article, (link found on a Corvette forum), prompted an interest in how setting up a Lotus V8 might be similar to a Lotus 49 at least in some general respects.
This led to the discovery of reference to a late issue Lotus Service Bulletin on suspension upgrades that included spring rates for the standard version and the 350 Sport, (only fifty 350s were made out of over 10,000 V8s). They were tweaked for performance and only sold in Europe.
Standard street version F/R spring rates: 250/275.
350 Sport: 350/330.
JMHO, it seemed to me a curious thing the performance version would have softer rear springs. It goes against all this 40/60 balance stuff about Grand Prix Legends setups.
The Lotus V8 has nearly 50/50 balance built-in.The ratio of F/R spring rate for the street version is 47.6/52.4 by percent, while the ratio for the 350 Sport is 51.4/48.6. Ride height for both is the same front and rear.
However, for this and all my GPL setups, rather than computing the ratio of gross weight to spring rate and correlate to the 49, spring rates were determined by relying on a non-GPL chart posted here awhile back that indicated an appropriate front spring rate by gross weight for a typical race car. For a hotlap car at 1,350 pounds, a spring rate of 125 pounds is "in the range."
Therefore, 125/51.4 x 48.6 = Rear Spring Rate of 118 pounds when front is 125.
Searching through Lotus V8 forums for suspension tuning tips found various suggestions and specs. So far the following has seemed most credible and respected without too much argument among the Lotus forum gurus.
In my view these changes make a comfortable and capable 49. Not pretending its fast, faster, fastest...only that it is pleasant to drive and behaves well enough.
Front camber: -.5 (minus point five)
Rear camber: -1.0 (minus point one)
Front toe-out: .15 (point one five)
Rear toe-in: .13 (point one three)
Front bar: 180 (Current Preference)
Rear bar: 95 (Same)
Diff: 45/85/2 (Based on Kaemmer/Hine Interview reference)
Steering ratio: 9:1
Ride Height Front and Rear: 2.5in.
Enna Pergusa Setup Asymmetries:
Tires Front: 21L 20R
Tires Rear: 19L 18R
Bump Stops Front: 1.7inL 1.65inR
Bump Stops Rear: 1.75inL 1.7inR
This setup is for me about the easiest ever flat out in mid-corner.
Probably needs something tho...probably slow.
Edited by John Woods, Mar 21 2015 - 10:12 AM.