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						Caterham Seven 8
Brand-new 2003 Caterham Seven

2003 Caterham Seven Clubsport for sale

By Dean Larson

Obviously the Lotus Seven is a car that hasn’t changed much in its 60 years of production, but I have to admit, this particular Seven for sale on eBay had me fooled. With a wide set of retro wheels, perfect detailing and just 500 miles on the clock, I assumed this to be a brand new Caterham, fresh off the production line in the U.K. But despite the car’s modern looks, do a little digging and you’ll find that this car is indeed 15 years old.

The biggest clue to the Caterham’s actual age is under the hood. Where Caterham’s newer Sevens make extensive use of the Ford Sigma engine, this car uses a slightly older version of the Duratec line, the Zetec. The Zetec saw extensive use in the U.S. and U.K. from 1992 to 2004, putting it right in line with this Seven’s ’03 build date.

Caterham Seven 2

The little 1.8-liter looks right at home under the hood of the Caterham and should be plenty easy to service if need-be. A nice set of individual throttle bodies spice things up a bit for looks, and performance no doubt, but I’d be interested to know if the setup uses any air filters.

While the alloy wheels on this Seven do it perfect justice, the Goodyear Eagle NCT 50 tires are another clue to the Caterham’s age. Just from a quick glance, it’s pretty easy to see that these tires are a few years old, but thankfully there’s a sure-fire way to tell a tire’s age from the information on the sidewall. All tires manufactured since 2000 will have a four digit number identifying the week and year they were manufactured. For example, 5107 would tell you a tire was manufactured on the 51st week of 2007. Tires built before 2000 will only have three digits though, slightly complicating the process. The code on these tires reads 231, followed by a small triangle. The incorporation of the triangle is seen on many tires from the ’90s, letting us know that these tires were built in the 23rd week of 1991 — definitely due for a change!

While the car has aged 15 years since its completion, there are still some incentives that should help this Seven sell quick. For one, the car has logged just 500 miles since it was built, making it a brand new car as far as the odometer is concerned. Also, the car wears an ideal coat of paint for a Seven and has great presentation overall. Finally, buyers should consider that the Caterham is 100 percent complete, assembled and titled, which means no waiting to have an engine installed or complicated DMV processes.

At $44,950, this Caterham Clubsport is priced just under the newer 280, 360 and 480 models. Check it out here at Hillbank Motor Corporation's eBay listing.

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Caterham Lotus Seven