'If you've just bought an ordinary sports car, we're sorry. Every Lotus is designed to give a man one thing above all - the greatest driving satisfaction the world can offer. Nothing hugs the road so closely, nothing corners so fast and true, nothing so happily combines performance, styling, comfort and pure handling pleasure.' - Lotus Europa advertisement, 1971.
Launched at the 1967 Brussels Show, the Lotus Type 46 - the Europa - was the marque's first mid-engined road car, and was powered by a Renault 16 engine mounted in an Elan-type backbone frame. Its specification also included all-round independent coil-sprung suspension and disc brakes on the front wheels (subsequently on the rear, too).
Unusual styling provided ample luggage space while rearward visibility through the narrow, full-width back window was surprisingly good.
Having been manufactured exclusively for export for its first two years, the Europa made its UK debut in 1969 in improved S2 form. Renault engined like its S1 predecessor, the S2 reverted to a conventional body/chassis attachment, the S1 'shell having been bonded in place. This greatly simplified, and cheapened, accident repairs, while electric windows and adjustable seats were welcome additions to the previously somewhat penny-pinching specification.
In the autumn of 1971 the Type 74 Europa Twin Cam was introduced, powered, as its name suggests, by the Ford-based DOHC engine from the Elan. With 105bhp on tap, the Twin Cam was good for close on 200km/h, a figure bettered by the more powerful (126bhp) 'big valve' engined Special model that superseded it after one year.
Dating from the penultimate year of production, this Europa Special was restored by JMW Racing of Gueux, France in 2010 and comes with a detailed, illustrated report on its condition complied by Cabinet Rodex in September of that year. Presented in commensurately good condition, the car is offered with restoration invoices, valid French Carte Grise and Contrôle Technique.
Datant de l'avant-dernière année de production, cette Europa Special restaurée par JMW Racing de Gueux (France) en 2010 est accompagnée d'un rapport illustré et détaillé sur son état établi par le Cabinet Rodex en septembre 2012. Présentée dans un état excellent, la voiture est offerte avec ses factures de restauration, sa carte grise française et son contrôle technique.