[DML] Lotus Esprit Rear Suspension
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[DML] Lotus Esprit Rear Suspension

And now for something completely different...

Awhile back, there was some discussion of the differences
between the way the trailing arms are attached to the
DeLorean and the Lotus Esprit.  I finally have enough parts
on hand to take some pretty clear pictures of the Esprit 
setup on a bare frame.  The pictures have been posted 
in the photo area in the Lotus Trailing Arm Attachment 

The first photo shows the right rear suspension from the 
rear.  You can see the upper and lower links, the hub
carrier, and the trailing arm.  The second photo shows
the right rear from the side.  This attachment is typical
of the 1980-2004 Esprits.  The only major differences
over the model years was the switch to outboard brakes 
along with the Renault UN-1 gearbox in 1988.  The hub 
carriers and upper links change slightly, with the upper link
becoming an inch longer, and the hub carrier made stouter
to support the calipers and braking forces.  The trailing arm 
grew a couple of brackets on the bottom to attach some
hard brake lines.

The third photo shows the front trailing arm attachement 
from the inside of the engine compartment.  What you 
see is the mounting plate for the rubber bushing, the
attachemnt bolts, the snubber washer and the trailing 
arm bolt.  The hole below the mount is the space for 
the engine mount bushing.  The fourth picture is the attachment
from the outside of the frame.  You can see the mounting 
bracket, the trailing arm, the trailing arm bolt, snubber 
washer (barely), and the attachment bolts.  

The final photo is the front trailing arm attachment parts.
On the left is the rubber bushing.  In the center is the
alignment shim used to set rear toe.  Next to it on the 
right is the bracket.  Above and below the bracket are 
the attachment bolts.  The trailing arm bolt is in the lower
left corner, with the snubber washers.  The order 
of installation from the inside out is:

Frame mount
Alignment Shim(s)
Trailing Arm Bushing
Trailing arm

with the snubber washers on either side of the trailing 
arm bushing.

The main difference between the two setups is the
placement and security of the shims.  The Lotus shims
are stouter, and held in place by the attachment bolts, 
not the trailing arm bolts.  They can't fall out.  The trailing 
arm bolt itself is mounted the same - through a rubber 
bushing with freedom to move along all three axes.  The 
frame mount also appears to be more rigid, with additional 
stiffeners welded to the mount on either side of the bushing.
This mount will not "oil can" as the trailing arm moves.


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