SOLD 12/20

1966 Lotus
Lotus 47

One of approximately 55 built. Period racing history as the first North American delivered Lotus 47. Restored by marque expert with freshened dyno-time only engine, CSRG log books showing 25 year racing history. Numerous spares included.

  • VIN47/GT/09
  • Exterior ColorBlue with yellow stripe
  • Interior ColorBlack
  • MileageTMU
  • Engine1.6L Lotus Twin Cam
  • Engine no.9445
  • TransmissionHewland FT200 5-speed manual
  • StatusSold
  • StockFJ2435


1966 Lotus 47
s/n 47-GT-09, eng. no. 9445
Dark Blue with Yellow stripe and Black Interior

It could be said that the genius of Colin Chapman resided not in his engineering capacity, rather in his ability to deploy such excellence with a fraction of the budgets that were spent by major manufacturers. Chapman’s motto “Simplify then add lightness” resulted in remarkably novel approaches to performance cars that repeatedly yielded successful competition cars. Among the many innovations seen throughout the 1960s no other Lotus was more exemplary of Lotus’ engineering efficiency, design innovations, and Chapman’s moto than the Europa.

Originally intended as a club sport racer replacement for the aging Lotus 7, the Lotus 47 was reconfigured as a more specialized race car using the Europa as a base, but radically departing from the standard Europa employing mechanicals derived from Lotus Formula B cars. The Lotus 47 retained a similar lightweight folded/welded boxed steel backbone chassis as the original road going Europa at the front of the car, however, everything behind the bulkhead was pure Formula B. This approach allowed the 47 to outwardly appear very much like an “ordinary” Europa. This chassis design coupled with a very thin (80 pound) laminate fiberglass body created a GT car under 1300 pounds with virtually all the capabilities of an open wheeled Formula B car. One can really only tell the difference between the 47 and Europa by gazing under the rear of the car when it instantly becomes obvious as you see the massive 10” wide racing tires neatly tucked under the car. All this combined with a 1600cc Cosworth mid-engine twin-cam power plant and the nearly limitless gear ratios available to the Hewland FT 200 transaxle combined to deliver an impressive car. Due to their largely handmade construction, the Lotus 47 was specially constructed by Lotus Components instead of the Lotus factory. Other features of these unique cars included Hewland FT 200 5-speed gearboxes, reversed bottom wishbone suspension, top link and dual radius arms, and specially cast front uprights which accommodated larger Girling brakes. Fully homologated as a Group 4 production car in period, the Lotus 47 is considered among the fastest vintage legal pre-1967 production race cars today. With approximately 55 cars built in period and few with known history since new, it is rare to find such a well sorted example ready for race duty and capable of running 1:48 at Sonoma. In addition to being accepted by virtually all vintage groups, the Lotus 47 is one of the few Lotus cars that also qualifies to run at the Classic LeMans event.

One of the earliest examples in existence, this Lotus 47 is sequence production number GT-09, the ninth car built and the first Lotus 47 to arrive in North America. The first owner, Alan Pease raced the car to some success under a Castrol Motor Oil sponsorship. Pease, a budding professional race car driver, would ultimately rise to some prominence as a driver for Dan Gurney’s AAR (All American Racers) team, competing in three Formula 1 championship races. Although Pease passed away in 2014, the current and consigning owner was fortunate to have engaged in correspondence with him as he shared period photos and stories of his years with the car. After his ownership, the Lotus was sold to a second owner, a resident of Quebec. By 1982 the car was owned by Jack Boxtrom and then later sold to Dave Hinze. On, or around 1983, Hinze began work on the car. During restoration Hinze removed the original chassis plate and stored it in a binder with documents for the car. When Hinze sold the car to a collector in New York, he delivered the binder to the transport company for the new owner. The binder and chassis plate were subsequently lost during this period. Hinze, in discussions with the current owner, recalled seeing the car in the 1990s, recognizing it as his former car, GT-09. A signed statement from Hinze validating his ownership and the chassis plate is included with the car.

From New York, the car moved to vintage racing enthusiast Don Orosco. By the 1990s the car was purchased as a project by then CFO of Apple Computer, Joe Graziano. An avid vintage racer, Graziano engaged Northern California expert Jim Groom to perform a no expense spared restoration from 1994-1995. During the restoration, Groom engineered a clever shifting lever adaptation based on the Chevron Formula B race cars which moved the gear shifter from the center of the car to the right of the driver. Not only does this make for quicker shifts, the new location facilitates easier access for linkage adjustments. In preparation for racing, a compliant fire suppression system and full roll cage were installed. The car was sold to Jim and Steve Lawrence with the ownership trail concluding in 2006 when purchased by the current and consigning owner. Now ready for continued vintage racing events, CSRG racing logbooks support the many vintage racing events this Lotus has completed over the past 25 years of continued use.

Detailed documentation on the current mechanical specifications for the engine are copiously retained with the car today, including Hewland FT200 gearbox ratios, ignition specs, Lucas mechanical fuel injection settings, intake and exhaust cam measurements, and details on the 1600cc displacement 13.6:1 twin cam engine. Under current ownership this Lotus has been raced at various tracks, regularly prepared by race professionals including a recent engine refresh with honed cylinders, new rings, new pistons, valves, guides, and refreshed cams. In 2020, Huffaker Engineering, Sonoma, CA dyno tested the engine, recording 190.4 hp at 7,700 rpm. The engine has since logged only dyno time, ready for the next owner.

Today this rare Lotus 47 presents with a very nice combination of superb mechanical care matched to a proven restoration. The Lotus 47 is a marvel of lightweight materials and engineering with precise power to weight balance achieved in the mid-engine design. The mechanical vision, wide stance, and low profile are impossibly difficult to portray in photos. The dark blue profile, black wheels, and short wheelbase seem to slink away from view. The paint is glossy, and the body panels show good fit, still displaying the high-quality livery and restoration by Jim Groom. The condition of the paint is consistent with mid-level racecar cosmetics, though some areas now show selected evidence of use, including crazing on the left fender, a few small star bursts in the paint, and some chips along the hood edge. The body panels are nicely finished and exhibit very good panel fit given racecar construction standards of the past. The low-profile wheels, triple ear knockoffs, and Avon racing tires are deeply tucked into the body allowing for space to support the wider tires. The windshield, sporting numerous vintage racing event stickers spanning 2000-2016 and plexiglass side windows are in very good condition showing minimal wear or surface hazing. Tail light lenses, white roundels, yellow hood stripe, and front emblem are all in good to very good condition. Other exterior details include a polished alloy fuel filler cap, molded in intake scoops, and flush warm-air rear screen air extractor with an offset exhaust port. In all, the exterior presentation is quite nice for someone who wishes to race an historically important car with fantastic mechanicals and satisfying cosmetics.

The interior, while sparse and purposeful, displays typical finishes for race cars with very well sorted placement for key features. Most notably, the red rimmed Lotus steering wheel, which is flanked by the right-side gear selector and a center console panel with key instruments and marked switches. The driver’s seat has a specially contoured seat bottom cushion (though the original seat bottom also comes with the car) and Simpson racing harness, surrounded by a fully integrated roll cage. The dashboard is purposefully arrayed with a mix of contemporary safety features for vintage racing and vintage instruments accented against the brushed aluminum panels and satin black trim. The raw aluminum and black finishes supported by various polished metal accents deliver a confident mechanical presence.

Underneath the lightweight removable rear deck lid, the engineering genius of the twin cam mid-engine layout and supporting mechanical components is fully revealed. The open layout allows for easy access to all components including impressive Lucas mechanical fuel injection, tuned exhaust, and Hewland gearbox. The engine compartment is professionally prepared to the highest standards using authentic components updated for safety and reliability. The suspension, frame, engine, and gearbox have all been properly restored, still displaying excellent finishes throughout.

The car starts and runs very well, generating great exhaust sounds at idle or when blipping the throttle. Steering response is quick and very direct with a light feel and slot-car grip when cornering. In all respects, this Lotus 47 displays premier mechanical confidence and professional preparation for anyone seeking a competitive racecar combining historic roots and production rarity. This Lotus 47 comes with records from the current owner documenting mechanical work performed over the past few years, dyno sheets, engine specifications for the current build, a Hewland maintenance book, copies of period magazine articles, copies of period photos showing the car when first raced and through early ownership, restoration photos when fully restored by specialist Jim Groom, CSRG Log Books dating back to the early 1990s, and detailed reference notes outlining engine, gearbox, and fluid specifications.

The following extras are included with the car:

4 newer Mag wheels with older tires, restored condition
One Phase 9 muffler for Laguna
The original fuel tank for the right side
The original radiator
The original shift linkage
6 used but good gear sets
New radiator in box
A poster board for display at the track
One used alternator which might work, current runs on a constant loss system
Partial body molds: 4 parts for complete rear section Forward portion of the nose/air dam
Driveline donuts, used but good.
Car cover

This rare, professionally prepared Lotus 47 offers the next racing enthusiast an unrepeatable opportunity to experience one of the most capable and important Lotus race cars ever built. With its potent Cosworth twin cam engine and innovative chassis construction, this amazing Lotus 47 is sure to run at the front of the pack delighting anyone with the skills and fortitude to experience the brilliance of Colin Chapman.

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