Hammond drives the icons: Lotus Esprit

What else? It's quick enough to keep you entertained, but never to startle. It makes 210bhp - not a huge number - but it's light at just 1,220kg, so 0-60mph takes around six seconds, and it'll top out at 155mph.

But this is still the original ‘wedge’, if you ask me – a proper supercar with pop-up headlights and everything. And even in this outlandish colour scheme, it’s a gorgeous-looking thing. True to Lotus form, it’s light and makes the very best use of its power. And it’s got history and pedigree; it was around in one form or another for 28 years. There are better cars, more sophisticated, ground-breaking cars, but the Esprit has properly earned its place in the halls of motoring folklore, and to own one, any version of it, will always be to own, and drive, a legend.

(Words: Richard Hammond, Photos: Justin Leighton)