Midlana design goals:
  • Create a self-built affordable high performance sports car
  • Styling to resemble a classic Lotus Seven
  • Drivetrain shall be FWD in a mid-engine configuration
  • Use commonly available donor parts
  • Provide the builder the choice of inboard or outboard front suspension
  • Provide a complete yet open-ended and flexible design with many options

Why self-built?

Cost. It’s a way to own a high-performance sports car without the expense. Additionally, some people just enjoy building things with their hands, or building something with a parent or child as a bonding experience.

Why the Lotus shape?

Low weight and simplicity. Increasing horsepower helps acceleration but doesn’t improve cornering or braking – reducing weight improves all three. A Lotus Seven-type car is small and light so it’s a great starting point on which to base the Midlana design. Also, by installing a FWD drivetrain mounted mid-engine, the rear weight bias improves acceleration and braking, all without changing overall weight, horsepower, or cost. Finally, because Midlana somewhat resembles a Lotus, it simplifies registration and insurance because it’s something the government offices understand, something they have checkboxes for.

Before starting the build, builders must decide what they want the car to do and this points comes up repeatedly. Far from a cookie-cutter car, Midlana requires builders take an active role in the decision making; a weekend cruiser for driving to lunch will be very different from a purpose-built track car.

Given the above, the design coalesced into the following – click on the links:

Wheels and Tires

Shocks and Springs

Drivetrain

Construction

Testing and Driving