So what is a Locost? Where did I get such a crazy idea? How much will it cost? How long will it take? These are the questions most often associated with the Lucky 7. I will try to address these and other such questions here.

What is a Locost?

The term Locost is a play on the “low cost” of building this car. First used in Ron Champion’s book “Build Your Own Sports Car for £250″, the term Locost has come to mean a few different things. A Locost is loosely defined as a Lotus 7 replica built at home or in a garage for as little money as possible. In Ron’s book the car was built as low cost as possible, for about $500. While it is nearly impossible to build one on that budget these days, it can still be a truly low cost project. The exception is that these days a Locost is essentially any vehicle built in one’s own home, and by a person or small group. Some people will spend enough on their Locost that they could purchase a modest brand new vehicle, but they still call it a Locost.

Why would you want to build one?

Why?! There are any number of reasons for every individual. For most it is a challenge, a way to accomplish something that can be enjoyed for years to come by just about anyone. For me it is more than just an ends to a mean. The experience will teach me things no classroom or book can, and expand my abilities far beyond where they currently lay. Beyond increasing my skills, the build will fulfill my strong desire to do something interesting with my life. Not to say that I, or Locost builders, are enlightened or anything, but most people that I have met simply don’t do anything interesting with their lives. They go to school, get a job, have a family and do that for the rest of their life. I have idolized the creators of the past, people like Nikola Tesla, who spent their time building and creating awesome things with their lives. While building the Locost will put me nowhere even close to such great men, it helps me feel like I’m on the way. In the words of “weconway” on the Locost USA forums:

…nowadays people are so intellectually lazy and lethargic that they can’t build ANYTHING with their hands. They’ll spend hours watching whiny people marooned on an island, but won’t spend a second adding anything to the world.


How much will it cost? How long will it take?

Again, changes with each builder. the Lucky 7 has no tight budget, but keeping the build under $5000 sounds reasonable. A car that will look, handle, and go, like a car that should cost ten times that amount, is certainly an exciting prospect. Some builds take a dozen years to complete, some less than a year. I am aiming for less than 2 years, but could be completed much faster or slower.


How fast will it go?

One of the most common questions, and one of the most annoying. It will go like stink, that’s for sure. The annoying bit is that it may not have a great deal of horsepower, and some people immediately dismiss it’s chances of being quick at that. BUT consider this: A Ferrari 612 Scagglietti weighs around 4000lbs, and has 540hp. That means each horsepower it has needs to move 7.5 lbs. Many Locosts can be built at around 1300lbs, with around 150hp. That gives it a weight/power ratio of just 8.6, just a pound more than a car that costs hundreds of thousands of dollars. So yes, it is fast.


Lotus 7 - wikipedia.org

An original Lotus 7 Mk4. Similar to what the Lucky 7 should look like.
Photo from Wikipedia.org