Cohort Pic(k) of the Day: 1965 Lotus Elan In Carmel

Even if vintage cars survive at higher rates in the US West Coast, Lotus sightings don’t come often. Even in posh and ritzy Carmel By The Sea, an Elan out in the open is an unusual thing. 911s and BMWs, that’s a whole different thing. But Elans?

Even the most ardent fan of these will admit they’re fragile wondrous little things. Take a short ride, enjoy its light and tossable dynamics. But do stay away from long distance travelling.

Fun in small doses is definitely the way to go with the Elan.

William Garrett captured this Elan at the Cohort in Carmel. Was it on its way to Pebble Beach or just out on a weekend drive?

Cars like the Elan can bring heated discussions, detractors will refer to it as tiny and unreliable, while supporters will reply “So what?” Of course, the Miata would create an efficient Elan for the masses, far more common and easier to obtain (though early ones are getting a bit thin lately). Still, without the original Elan, would there be a Miata? The model definitely left a lasting impression.

Carmel probably raises many emotions too. In all honesty, it’s a lovely place; which is why it’s so ritzy to begin with. Have you ever seen the moneyed move in droves to a lousy location? Regardless, I visited the place on quite a few occasions and I always found myself to fit right in, even though arriving at the wheel of a 1968 Beetle. No police was ever called on me (my careful disguise in J Crew shirts must have done the trick).

As for myself, I love the Elan. Though looking at my bank account, a tired Miata will have to do.

The Elan has been covered at CC before:

Cohort Outtake: Lotus Elan – A Study In Extremes

Vintage R & T Review: 1967 Lotus Elan S/E “We’ve Never Driven A Car That Is More Sheer Fun To Drive”

As well as the show that brought it to US households on a weekly basis:

CC TV: Cars Of The Avengers