SOLD 12/17

1964 Lotus
30 Sports Racer

Known and Documented History From New. Period Accurate Restoration by Sports Car Specialists Huffaker Engineering. Beautifully Prepared and Presented, Widely Event Eligible.

  • VIN30/L/8
  • Exterior ColorRed
  • Interior ColorBlack
  • MileageTMU
  • Engine4.7 Litre 8-Cylinder
  • TransmissionZF 5-Speed Transaxle
  • StatusSold
  • StockFJ2098


1964 Lotus 30 Sports Racer
s/n 30/L/8
Red with white stripes

It was inevitable. Lotus founder and genius engineer Colin Chapman had accomplished so much in a very short period of time. Sooner or later he was going to advance his prototype 19B with the powerful Ford V8 into a more refined design. Mid-engine configuration was clearly the direction of modern racing, and Lotus was leading the pack developing lightweight cars with excellent grip and reliable performance. Chapman and Len Terry completed their design for the Lotus 30 in 1964, assembling and delivering just 33 cars (21 of which are Series 1 cars, such as this example) to teams and privateers before deciding to cease production and focus instead only on Formula 1, thus making the Lotus 30 Sports Racer the last Lotus of its kind. Throughout the short build period for the Lotus 30, Team Lotus entered factory cars driven by legendary racing icons Jim Clark, Trevor Taylor, and Richie Ginther, while in the US A.J. Foyt competed in a Lotus 30 prepared by Holman and Moody.

This particular car was completed December 29, 1964 at the Lotus factory. It has been fully documented from the day it was sold new to Homer Rader, owner of Lotus Southwest in Dallas, Texas. Rader raced the car successfully in USRRC and SCCA competition before selling it to Leroy Melcher of Houston, Texas who competed with the car. In the late 1960s, the car was leased to Universal Studios where it appeared with Paul Newman, Robert Wagner, and Joanne Woodward in the 1969 movie “Winning”. A total of nine documented owners from New York to California (each identified with name and address in records) cared for and maintained this Lotus 30 until 1995 when Northern California enthusiast Julio Palmaz purchased the car and embarked on a five-year $127,000.00 restoration, engaging racing experts Huffaker Engineering and a host of specialists to complete the stunning car seen today. Most importantly, the restoration was a great deal more involved than general restorations as several components required hand fabrication using specialized materials including, but not limited to fabricating and sand blasting vintage Brembo calipers, fabricating half shafts for spiders, machining a new steering column and column support, machining new steering arms, half shaft yokes, reworking wheels and crash cell platform mounts, and dozens of other custom built pieces specifically crafted to maintain the authenticity of this great car. Shortly after the restoration was completed, the car sold to the current owner who has properly cared and preserved the car while also participating in various vintage events including the Monterey Historics in 2008, 2009, and 2011, and most recently, the 2015 Sonoma Historic Motorsports Festival.

Today, the car is accompanied by a complete and detailed history including a documented unbroken chain of ownership (with bills of sale) documented USA racing competitions, Lotus MSO, period photographs with accurate written identifications, Lotus 30 Registry class listing, news articles, race results, correspondences between owners, and copious mechanical notations for service, repairs, and most recently detailed receipts for the comprehensive restoration, and detailed dyno sheet recording performance figures. Recent follow up service records and receipts are also included for post-restoration service and improvements, further validating this already amazing car.

Currently, this Lotus 30 must be counted among the finest and most correctly equipped examples in existence. The restoration was completed to a very high standard and all updates have been performed with the same level of excellence from marque experts and racing specialists under current ownership. While the restoration was performed on the original chassis, considerable care was taken when restoring the chassis to eliminate the minor design flaws and flex issues which all Lotus 30s suffered from. To that end, the pyramid over the transaxle was remade out of much heavier gauge material than Lotus used in period thus improving the “tuning fork”. The paint was completed to higher than competition standards and remains in very nice condition with excellent panel fit, and very nice body surfacing, displaying gorgeous, accurate period livery. Excellence continues as one circles the front, sides, and rear of the car admiring the beautifully finished wheels, shod with Dunlop tires. Of particular note are the seamlessly integrated headlights and clear covers, blending perfectly into the sweeping front fenders. As stunning as the bright red paint and curvaceous bodywork is, once your eyes become fixated on the chrome plated velocity stacks erupting from the engine, everything seems to fade in the distance. Somehow this mechanical disruption to the fluid form creates a captivating partnership of brawn and beauty that reverberates through your entire body even though the engine has yet to fire.

Under the deck lid, the beautiful and powerful Ford 302 V8 engine mated to a ZF 5 speed transaxle reveals the heart of this potent racer. The carburetors are true original (not the common recreation) sand cast IDA’s, which are nearly impossible to find. Fit and finish achieved throughout the engine compartment far exceed original specifications, resulting in a very reliable and handsome car, pleasing both the eyes and the driver’s confidence. Dyno sheets boast just over 500hp (with shop headers, likely just under 500hp with the headers in the car) echoing the high standards Huffaker restoration specialists insisted on achieving. Finishes, mechanical linkages, wiring, hoses, and supporting performance equipment are all prepared with reverence to the original design, but again offered with sensitive updates critical to making a competitive but safe historic racecar. The nicely designed (currently compliant) roll bar and wraparound windshield reveals just a few of the many historic events and races this car has competed in. The interior is purposefully equipped with quality materials working in harmony with historically accurate details and tastefully updated safety features. There is literally no component of this car that has not been addressed with excellence either in the Huffaker restoration or in subsequent servicing performed by the current owner.

The car comes with multiple spares including a dozen spare wheels, a spare formed completion seat for racing use, various suspension parts, a complete set of spare body parts, a spare windshield, radiator, spare oil cooler, and spare 289 engine block and heads. Also included are various structural chassis parts including a spare center box main frame from another Lotus 30 which with some research may even constitute the underpinnings of another car. Also present is a spare exhaust, and dozens of other miscellaneous parts finish off the ample list of spares. Also included are all documents recording the history and restoration as well as recent service records.

This Lotus 30 represents an exceptional opportunity for a competition-minded enthusiast to obtain and race one of the finest examples in existence. Well sorted mechanicals, exceptional documentation, and a comprehensive restoration all come together in this sultry V8 powered Lotus, ready to challenge even the most confident vintage racer to the razors edge of their driving capabilities.

Lead photo credit: Wayne Hill

The above vehicle information is complete and accurate to the best of our knowledge at the time it is posted to this website. Corrections or additional information is always appreciated. All advertised prices exclude government fees and taxes, any finance charges, any dealer document preparation charge, and any emission testing charge. Vehicles are subject to prior sale. All advertised to be true but not guaranteed. We assume no liability for errors or omissions.

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Fantasy Junction  •  510-653-7555  •  1145 Park Ave, Emeryville, CA 94608