One of the very first modern roadsters: Joaquin and his 62’ Lotus Elan S2
While I was in Barcelona, I had the chance to meet Joaquin and his amazing car. He brought me to the family’s garage to show me the impressive collection they have which is where I discovered one of the very first modern roadsters, the Lotus Elan. It was my very first time driving and photographing this car, for me it’s a car that brings a lot of joy to all speed lovers. The Elan is a very good example of what Japanese engineers and designers used as an inspiration to create one of the most successful roadsters in history: the Mazda MX-5. Because of that, it’s clear that the design of the Elan is absolutely timeless.
To share a bit of the history of the Elan, I asked Joaquin some questions about his car. I hope you enjoy the interview.
Tell me about you.
My name is Joaquín Cumellas, I’m from Barcelona, Spain and I was born in 1997. By that time, my uncle was racing the Dakar Rally finishing third in motorbikes and now he has built Silence, the biggest factory of electric motorcycles in Spain where I’m working at the moment.
How did you first become interested in cars?
Cars have been part of my life since I was born. My family had been collecting cars since my grandfather was member number 007 of the 365 Porsche Club Spain, by that time he also had an Aston Martin DB4 that he unfortunately sold many years ago.
It’s a family car that is part of a private collection, right?
Right, my father’s first car was an MGB from 1965 – a car that we still have. He had always liked English cars so when he found this Lotus even knowing that it wasn’t working really well he decided to buy it.
What condition was the car in when your family bought it?
At the beginning the car had many issues, in fact, it stood in the barn of the family farm for some years until the death of my grandfather, when my dad decided to rebuild the engine with a big valve preparation and bring the Lotus back to life.
What’s your favorite detail or what do you love most about the Elan?
What I like most about the Elan is its weight, which doesn’t even reach 600 kilos, and when you drive the car it feels like a bourgeois kart. My favorite detail of the car is undoubtedly the small plaque that it has on the side of the co-pilot. With its two Laurel Crowns it commemorates the World Championships of Formula One won by Lotus in 1963 and 1965 with Jim Clark behind the wheel of his Lotus 25.
For me, the green stripe gives a really nice touch aesthetic-wise, what was the idea behind that, or does it come like that from the factory?
The truth is, I don’t know if it came out from the Factory like this, but I agree with you a lot, it gives the car a racing look just like the Lotus 25 but in inverted colors.
Is there any other classic you would like to have?
Nowadays, my daily car is a beautifully conserved Mazda MX-5 NA form 1996 also known as Miata. The Miata has always been considered a future classic, but in fact, next year will be its 25th anniversary and so it will officially become a classic. And to top it off, the car that the Japanese designers relied on to find the best-selling sports car in history was the Lotus Elan.
In response to your question, I would be very happy if I still have my Miata next year to be able to proudly say that my daily car is a classic.
Tell me about your project.
My project is called Escuderia Barcelona. Our mission is to attract all those young lovers of classic cars that feel like they don’t fit into the events and this classic stuff because of their age.
At least that was my point of view every time I went to any meeting, parade, rally or concourse. I felt like the only child messing around until I grew a bit and met some other young fanatics like me.
It was at that moment when three of us decided to create this project with the purpose to gather a group of young people with whom to take our classics for a drive and to attend events of the classic motor world surrounded by a youthful atmosphere.
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