If you think a sweet new Caterham represents the purest driving experience, try a Lotus Super Seven from half a century earlier. It’ll be a conversation starter everywhere you go.

Being exposed to the elements means you will need to get a shower after each drive in a Lotus Seven, but that’s not a huge price to pay for an experience that will put a smile on your face all the time, perhaps even when it’s raining.

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When Geoff Wise bought his Seven, it was in a rather sorry condition, having been a race car all along. After swapping the engine for a stroker Cosworth that can run on pump gas, the Lotus got back to its road car roots to become one of those shiny California rides that make people walk up to them.

As Geoff explains to Petrolicious, for all the right reasons:

Added lightness means everything can be smaller. Including your interest in health and safety.