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						Haynes Lotus 4
Haynes-Style Lotus Seven

Home-built "Locost Seven" for sale

By Dean Larson

Imagine for a moment that you’re in possession of a “used” Mazda NA or NB roadster that’s a little rough around the edges. Maybe, like us, you’re from the Midwest where these cars are unusable for half the year during winter, but still seem to rust out anyhow. Or maybe your fine Miata is rusted from living in a salty coastal region, or has a few too many door dings these days. Sure, you could post it up on the used market for a few thousand bucks, but why do that when you could transform it into a custom sportscar with some new parts and a little know-how from the Locost Seven community. Still not inspired? Well maybe this Haynes-style Lotus replica on Craigslist can change your mind.

If you’re unfamiliar with the term, the Locost Seven was designed in the UK as a way to build a Lotus Seven at home using salvage Ford Cortina and Escort components. The process was well documented in several publications, which inflated the popularity of the Locost build style. As these components became harder to find, builders began to vary from the Locost design and use different donor cars. Finally, many of these improvements were brought together in a new book called Build Your Own Sports Car on a Budget published by Haynes Publishing in 2007. The Haynes method also gained traction here in the U.S. due to the prevalence of Mazda Miata donors over the popular UK donors. One characteristic common to most Haynes Roadsters is an independent rear suspension.

Haynes Lotus 1

The Haynes Roadster here on Craigslist is a nicely finished build based on a Mazda Miata (NA) donor. The entire car, including the tube chassis and bodywork, was constructed by the builder, but it’s unclear whether if the current seller built the car. The car is powered by the Miata’s 1.6-liter engine, which is said to be unmodified. The stock four cylinder should have plenty of life left in it at 72,000 miles, especially given the decreased weight it has to push around. The finished roadster weighs in at just 1,300 pounds empty, roughly 700 pounds lighter than the Miata.

The roadster is finished conservatively, reinforcing the bare-bones budget philosophy behind these cars. The aluminum bodywork was left raw, but has definitely seen some finish work, as it’s free of any tool marks. The chassis was painted in a green shade, but not quite the British Racing Green one would expect. The front suspension arms have a gold zinc plating type finish that looks very professional. The heavily reinforced roll bar is also a confidence booster. The car carries a rebuilt Ohio title following a highway patrol inspection, so future registrations shouldn’t be an issue.

Obviously with any home-built car, prospective buyers should be sure to thoroughly inspect every part of the car’s construction, but this Haynes roadster looks well built. The seller is asking just $14,000 for the car, which seems like a bargain considering the price of motorcycles, ATVs and other fun toys these days. Check out the seller’s ad here on Craigslist.

Thanks to J. R. Jones for sending this listing our way.

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