1957-58 Lotus-Climax Type 12 Heads to Bonhams|Cars Monaco Sale, ‘Les Grandes Marques à Monaco’, on 10 May

1957-58 Lotus-Climax Type 12 chassis ‘353’

Thanks to Bonhams|Cars

A club legend, the 1957-58 Lotus-Climax Type 12 chassis ‘353’ will head to auction at Bonhams|Cars Monaco Sale, ‘Les Grandes Marques à Monaco’, on May 10 2024.

The car was Lotus’ first Formula 1 contender and was driven by Graham Hill at both his and the Lotus Formula 1 team’s Formula 1 debut in the 1958 BRDC International Trophy race at Silverstone, as well as by Hill in the Monaco Grand Prix, which he would go on to win five times.

The Lotus Type 12 was designed by Colin Chapman in late 1956 – the first of the legendary designer’s single seaters. Seven of the cars were built initially for Formula 2 competition in 1957, with five going on to become works entries. In 1958 the team fit an uprated 1960cc Coventry Climax engine to 353 with the goal of entering Formula 1, which had a maximum engine size of 2.5-litres at the time, and being competitive on tighter twisty circuits. Hill placed seventh in the Formula 1 class at their debut at Silverstone.

The car would then move to John Fisher’s hands and continue being campaigned in 1959, including by Italian Maria Theresa de Filippis, before being acquired by Frank Gardner and heading to Australia. It was maintained in remarkably original order for much of its life, and then restored by its current owner, who wrote the literal book on the model and in particular the story of chassis no. 353, Lotus 12 Chassis No. 353: The History (2006).

Chassis ‘353’ will head to auction at Bonhams|Cars Monaco Sale on May 10 2024.

1957-58 Lotus-Climax Type 12 chassis ‘353’

May 3, 1958. BRDC International Trophy, Silverstone – Graham Hill making both his own and Team Lotus’s Formula 1 racing debut in Type 12 chassis ‘353’. GPL photo.

Wanted: Lotus Evora S or 400

Richard in Sydney is seeking a Lotus Evora S or 400 in manual with rear seats.

If you are looking to sell or would like to chat with Richard, send us an email at web@clublotus.com.au and we’ll put you in touch.

South Australia’s Lotus Torque for February, 2024

2023 All British Day

Last year’s All British Day at Echunga: Courtesy Andrew Stevens

Well, 2023 is fast receding in our rear view mirrors and the fun and games of 2024 are well advanced. This year’s F1 cars are being released ahead of testing, we’re already through two Sunday get togethers, the number of Lotus owners in SA continues to grow, the annual All British Day is only weeks away, and the rollup of cars at our new meeting spot at Beaumont Rd in the East Parklands continues to grow. Our latest initiative is to commence offering historic registration capability to SA members later this year. The early Elises are now eligible, but more of that as the steps are put in place.

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Wanted: 1978 to 1986 Lotus Esprit

Thomas is a recent arrival in Sydney from the USA and is seeking a 1978 to 1986 Esprit. Read on for the details, and reach out via web@clublotus.com.au if you’re able to help.

I have owned several Lotus cars over the years and currently own a Stevens Esprit with GM electronics. I’m looking to purchase a 1978 to 1986 Esprit (2, 2.2, Turbo models and would consider a S1 as well). I would rather pay more for one in good shape rather than a project but I am a retired mechanic (I owned a chain of Automotive repair shops in New Orleans). $100k ish budget.