physician
physician Reader
8/26/23 5:43 p.m.

I've been looking to buy or build a sevens for about 30 years.. yesterday, that came for sale locally...
an RM classic 7. the seller says its a lotus but, hey, RM plate and miata engine.. its been parked for 15 years.. , do not run, clutch pedal frozen, shifter does not move, brake all rusty, wheels are hard to turn...

 

Finally had a chance to sit in one and.. well.. i shouldnt.. its is exactly what i had dreamed all those years..

What are these worth? anyone have information on them? problems ? whats the parts donor?
 

i know they have been closed by caterham and since they were selling complete cars ans not kit, it probably didnt have a miata engine in first.. 

 

Pete. (l33t FS)
Pete. (l33t FS) GRM+ Memberand MegaDork
8/26/23 6:18 p.m.

Not enough pictures to be definitive, but the rear upright looks like a one-off part with something European for the bearing and hub, judging by the CV joint that bolts in.  Caliper looks kinda like a Ford part but difficult to tell.  Control arms front and rear are definitely not from a mass produced car.

 

Definitely, 100% not a Lotus, as only Series 1s had cycle fenders (thanks, GRM article from like 25 years ago!) and I am fairly certain that all of them had solid axles in the rear.  But you're aware of that already.

I believe RM made a couple different versions, i.e. standardish-size chassis, and bigger chassis. I think they also did live axle and IRS.

Unsure on your car, but Ford Sierra would be my guess for the rear end.

Here's some threads to pull on:

https://grassrootsmotorsports.com/reader-rides/13464/

https://www.locostusa.com/forums/viewtopic.php?f=35&t=18606

https://7rcb.be/page.php?id=145

Keith Tanner
Keith Tanner GRM+ Memberand MegaDork
8/26/23 6:38 p.m.

There were a bunch of RM kits scattered around for years, they seemed to show up in Canada fairly frequently. They were definitely sold as kits. We've talked about them a few times in this forum, and even had an owner. 
 

https://grassrootsmotorsports.com/reader-rides/13464/

https://grassrootsmotorsports.com/forum/grm/westfield-vs-caterham-vs-other-lotus-7-kits/180281/page1/
 

I would not try to hard to research the car, as it's clearly evolved since originally built. I'd try to figure out  what's actually on it instead, and would assume that I'd want to do a very thorough inspection stem to stern once I took ownership. It will not have a single donor.

physician
physician Reader
8/26/23 6:39 p.m.

Thanks for the quick answers! funny that those didnt pop in my search.. looks likes my skills are going down..

how  much do you think a running one would be worth? i know locations influence value.. here they are rare...

There was a Flyin miata westfield  kit,  for sale, complete and approved with a turbo kit.. 20 000$ can.. it was unsold after 3 months.. dont know if it solds or owner just kept it..

 

DeadSkunk  (Warren)
DeadSkunk (Warren) UltimaDork
8/26/23 6:47 p.m.

Well, this Westfield is for sale, here in Michigan, asking $15,000 and appears to be better done.....You're also going to pay a premium for anything automotive in Quebec.

Marketplace - 2009 Lotus 7 | Facebook

Product photo of 2009 Lotus 7

Keith Tanner
Keith Tanner GRM+ Memberand MegaDork
8/26/23 6:50 p.m.

They're rare everywhere. This is worth a bit more than a Locost probably would be, but less than a Westfield, Birkin or Caterham. Based on condition, it wouldn't be a lot because it's basically retuned to being a kit at this point. I would guess no more than $5k Cdn at the highest end as it sits. Running, it will be more but it all depends on how well it's executed.

If you're in Canada, be aware that you can't import most kit cars or kits unless they're at least 15 years old. There are some very specific exceptions like the Factory Five kits and the Miata-based Westfield that use a significant part of a single donor.

From a western U.S. perspective, $7k-$25k ballpark for a running Seven replica, mostly dependent on condition, fit and finish, and documentation. Caterhams and genuine Lotuses can be worth a lot. Rotus/RM/Westfield/Brunton/Superformance/etc a bit less. Homebuilt Locost even less. Engine can impact value as well...a stock Miata engine isn't worth the same as a good Cosworth BD-series.

Maybe low teens for your example once done, depending on how well it is done???

Non-running projects are worth quite a bit less, like only a few thousand at most.

physician
physician Reader
8/26/23 7:01 p.m.

In reply to Keith Tanner :

totally agree.  the seller only had 30 minute for me, so i di not have much time to look at everything.. i'll need another visit

the shifter did move side to side but not front and back.. any idea what can cause that in a miata transmission? 

physician
physician Reader
8/26/23 7:08 p.m.
Keith Tanner said:

They're rare everywhere. This is worth a bit more than a Locost probably would be, but less than a Westfield, Birkin or Caterham. Based on condition, it wouldn't be a lot because it's basically retuned to being a kit at this point. I would guess no more than $5k Cdn at the highest end as it sits. Running, it will be more but it all depends on how well it's executed.

If you're in Canada, be aware that you can't import most kit cars or kits unless they're at least 15 years old. There are some very specific exceptions like the Factory Five kits and the Miata-based Westfield that use a significant part of a single donor.

Thank you, it helps positioning it. there was a lotus serie4 in october last year with the twincam engine running rough.. sat for 2 months at 10$k.. i past on it because.. you know series4.. and highly expensive engine...
It works with your logic, thank you for your input!

 

But, are you saying i could import a 15 year old kit car built in the US? intersting, that could open up possibilities

Keith Tanner
Keith Tanner GRM+ Memberand MegaDork
8/26/23 7:20 p.m.

Yes, you can import a 15 year old kit from the US.

I'm not that familiar with Miata transmission internals, I'll let someone else do the remote diagnosis. But they're usually not a very expensive transmission to buy. First think I would do would be to pull the shifter and take a look to see if there's anything obvious. The early transmissions did have the ability to get stuck in reverse and first at the same time (easy fix if you can get to the reverse switch on the side of the trans, which is not a given in a Seven), but I don't know how the shifter moves when it's in that mode. 

physician
physician Reader
8/26/23 7:34 p.m.
Keith Tanner said:

Yes, you can import a 15 year old kit from the US.

I'm not that familiar with Miata transmission internals, I'll let someone else do the remote diagnosis. But they're usually not a very expensive transmission to buy. First think I would do would be to pull the shifter and take a look to see if there's anything obvious. The early transmissions did have the ability to get stuck in reverse and first at the same time (easy fix if you can get to the reverse switch on the side of the trans, which is not a given in a Seven), but I don't know how the shifter moves when it's in that mode. 

Thank you! i'll look into that if i can get a good deal, miata transmission are cheap.. 
 

BoxheadTim
BoxheadTim GRM+ Memberand MegaDork
8/26/23 8:12 p.m.

Definitely not trying to rain on your parade as I have an unhealthy liking of Seven-esque cars, but one thing to keep in mind is what you want to use it for.

Mainly mentioning this because I got bit by that when I bought my Maxton Rollerskate as none of the local track day organizers that I trust to run a decent day will let that on the track without modifications to both rollover protection and seatbelts. So if you ever plan to track this car, be at least prepared to put a better roll bar or even cage on, and probably a a 5-6 point harness.

Of course that's all irrelevant if you just want to enjoy it on some great roads .

lotusseven7 (Forum Supporter)
lotusseven7 (Forum Supporter) Dork
8/27/23 12:04 a.m.

Finally a topic I can contribute something to! My father, his brother and I purchased and imported 11 of the RM body/chassis "kits" into the USA from Ontario, Canada back in the mid-90's.

 

RM Ltd was in Port Elizabeth, South Africa. They were "supposedly" manufactured under license from Westfield. The whole story can be found online. The cars were built to use Ford/Merkur Scorpion suspension uprights, rear center sections, brakes and more. If the car you are looking at has Miata components, they were installed by a builder somewhere after it left the factory. 

 

There weren't different models that were made, a smaller and more true to the original and a larger cockpit/wheelbase model. I currently have one of each here in the warehouse and have built 2 of the smaller models in the past. The smaller was built to accept a straight axle and the wider model was made for an IRS set-up. The cars had some very basic design and fabrication issues along with thin wall tubing and poor welding. 
 

I can tell you anything that you might want to know, but it's late and I'll check back in the morning. 
 

1. The white car was my old DD and track toy. It had a Toyota 4AGE/T-50 and Mazda RX-7 GSL rear axle. 

2. The blue one is "in-process" and has a Honda F20C/6-speed out of an S2000 and a Mazda RX-7 GSL-SE rear axle.

3. The light blue one is sitting up on a shelf waiting to be built.......

 

 

jgrewe
jgrewe Dork
8/27/23 12:26 a.m.

There is a little spring/ring in the synchro assembly that a tab can break off. (17-244 or 17-244A in the image)

It spins a little out of place.

This allows part number 17-243 or 17-243A to drop out of place and jam the transmission in gear.

You only need two special tools. You need to make a socket that is about 15" deep to reach nut #17-332 and then a bearing puller that can reach about that far to pull bearing 17-180B(i think that is the one)

physician
physician Reader
3/20/24 8:53 p.m.

In reply to lotusseven7 (Forum Supporter) :

Nice cars! That car sold to someone else.. 

So you know what size is that irs frame i sat in? 442? I found a cheap miata donor and think i can build one in my shed..

 

lotusseven7 (Forum Supporter)
lotusseven7 (Forum Supporter) Dork
3/20/24 9:56 p.m.

Here's the EZ button for you and just a bit under a 7 hour drive.

 

https://grassrootsmotorsports.com/forum/cars-sale/locost-7mcsorley-442-project-plus-parts/261699/page1/

 

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